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					   Evaluation Report


15th International Conference on
     AIDS and STIs in Africa

      3 – 7 December, 2008
          Dakar, Senegal
                                             Contents
Executive Summary

1.   Evaluation Context and Methodology                                       8
        1.1 Background                                                         8
        1.2 The Evaluation                                                    10

2.   Findings: ICASA 2008 - Impact, Programme and Organization                13
        2.1 Characteristics of survey respondents                             13
        2.2 Conference impact                                                 18
                2.2.1 How participants learned about ICASA 2008               18
                2.2.2 Participants’ reasons for attending ICASA 2008          18
                2.2.3 Achievement of key objectives                           19
                2.2.4 Professional benefits gained from attending             20
                2.2.5 Anticipated use of benefits gained at ICASA 2008        21
                2.2.6 Professional value of ICASA 2008                        22
        2.3 Conference programme                                              22
                2.3.1 Conference orientation session                          22
                2.3.2 Quality of programme elements                           23
                2.3.3. Quality of programme tracks                            23
                2.3.4 Most valuable types of sessions and activities          25
                2.3.5 Preferred mix of sessions and activities                25
                2.3.6 Comments about the programme                            26
        2.4 Conference planning, organization and logistics                   28
                2.4.1 Pre-conference services                                 28
                2.4.2 Organization and logistics during the conference        28
                2.4.3 Conference interpretation service                       29
                2.4.4. Comments about organization and logistics              29
                2.4.5 International Steering Committee feedback               32
                2.4.6 Other comments about ICASA 2008                         34

3.   Findings: ICASA 2005 - Longer-term Impact                                35
        3.1   Characteristics of interviewees                                 35
        3.2   Benefits gained at ICASA 2005                                   36
        3.3   Impact of ICASA 2005 at the individual level                    37
        3.4   Impact of ICASA 2005 at the organizational level                37
        3.5   Impact of ICASA 2005 at the country level                       38
        3.6   Role of ICASA 2005 in partnership and network building          39

4.    Key Findings, Discussion and Conclusions                                40
        4.1 Introduction                                                      40
                4.1.1 Limitations of the evaluation                           40
        4.2 Key findings and discussion                                       41
        4.3 Conclusions                                                       45

        Appendices
        1. ICASA 2005 participant interview                                   46
        2. ICASA 2008 International Steering Committee member survey          48
        3. ICASA 2008 participant survey                                      51




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
Acknowledgements

Sincere thanks are extended to the 1,200 people who contributed to the evaluation by
completing a survey and/or participating in an interview. As a result of their involvement,
valuable information was collected to guide future planning and to help assess the impact
of the International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa.

The evaluation could not have been undertaken without the assistance of a number of individuals
and their contribution is acknowledged. In particular:
•   Professor Souleymane Mboup, Conference Chair; Bintou Thiam Ndiaye and Shanthi Manian,
    ICASA 2008 Secretariat, and Bernard Kadasia, International AIDS Society, for ongoing advice
    and support;
•   Laetitia Lienart and Gurmit Singh, International AIDS Society, for conducting interviews
    during the conference;
•   Karalyn McDonald, Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society, LaTrobe
    University, Australia, for statistical analysis and review of the report.




Glossary

ART                       Antiretroviral treatment
ARVs                      Antiretrovirals
IAC                       International AIDS Conference
ISC                       International Steering Committee (ICASA 2008)
ICASA 2008                15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa
ICASA 2005                14th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa
HAART                     Highly active antiretroviral treatment
M&E                       Monitoring and evaluation
MSM                       Men who have sex with men
PMTCT                     Prevention of mother-to-child transmission
SAA                       Society on AIDS in Africa
STIs                      Sexually Transmitted Infections
TB                        Tuberculosis




Author

The evaluation was undertaken by Diana McConachy, Evaluation Consultant, Sydney, Australia;
dmcconachy@people.net.au

March 2009




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
                                      EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

1.      Background

The 15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA 2008) was held in
Dakar, Senegal, 3 – 7 December, 2008. The conference was attended by approximately
6,500 participants, of whom 3,721 were regular, paid delegates representing 86 countries,
the majority in the African region.

The theme of the conference was ‘Africa’s response: Face the facts’, and it had five
objectives:
1.    To create an atmosphere conducive to information, exchange, experiences, and evaluation
      of the response to the epidemic in Africa.
2.    To aim for greater coherence in the design and implementation of AIDS programs by
      cultivating synergy among scientific, community, and leadership approaches.
3.    To heighten public awareness of the continuing impact of HIV/AIDS and STIs and the
      importance of international solidarity in the response.
4.    To promote universal access to prevention, care, and treatment of HIV/AIDS and STIs by
      reinforcing the engagement of leaders through concrete action that integrates decision-
      makers from the public and private sectors.
5.    To build an institutional memory by strengthening the Society on AIDS in Africa and follow-
      up to ICASA 2008.



2.      Conference Evaluation

The evaluation had three objectives:
i.   To review key conference processes and activities to guide the planning of future
     conferences;
ii.  To consider the immediate and short-term impact of ICASA 2008 on participants;
iii. To investigate the longer-term impact of the previous conference, ICASA 2005, at
     individual, organizational and country levels.

A range of methods was used to collect information to address these objectives including:
review of conference documentation, consultation with secretariat staff and conference
organizers, and interviews with, and surveys of, participants and committee members.
The views of approximately 1,200 people informed the evaluation.

The primary data collection instrument was a bilingual, online survey completed by 1,161
participants, two to four weeks after the conference had ended. The survey sought
feedback about the ICASA 2008 programme, organization and immediate impact. At least
18% of conference participants completed a survey. Overall, the survey sample was
representative of regular, paid delegates with respect to country, with the exception of
participants from South Africa, who were under-represented.



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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
Prior to the conference, a short, bilingual email survey was sent to 40 members of the
International Steering Committee (ISC) seeking comment about the committee’s
operations, conference planning and programme building. Twelve people (32%) provided
feedback. During ICASA 2008, the opportunity was taken to interview people who had
attended the previous conference, ICASA 2005. Interviews were conducted with 46
participants about the longer-term impact of that conference on their work in HIV and
STIs, and the HIV/STI work of their organization and their country.



3.      Key findings

3.1     ICASA 2008
Attendance
1.   ICASA 2008 attracted approximately 6,500 participants, 3,721 of whom were
     regular, paid delegates representing 86 countries.

2.    Networking opportunities was the most frequently given reason for attending ICASA
      2008 (by 45% of survey respondents), followed by programme content (36%).

Impact
3.   A large majority of survey respondents considered ICASA 2008 ‘successful’ or ‘very
     successful’ in facilitating the exchange of information about the epidemic in Africa (84%).
     At least two-thirds deemed the conference to have been ‘successful’ or ‘very successful’ in
     strengthening the Society on AIDS in Africa for involvement in future conferences (71%);
     cultivating synergy between science, community and leadership to increase coherence in
     AIDS programmes (69%); creating an atmosphere conducive to evaluating the response to
     the epidemic (68%); and bringing together decision-makers to lead and promote universal
     access (68%).

4.    Virtually all survey respondents (99%) benefited professionally from attending the
      conference; with 72% identifying three or more benefits gained. New contacts and
      opportunities for partnership and collaboration was the most frequently identified benefit
      (63%), followed by improved understanding of the epidemic in Africa (63%) and a renewed
      sense of purpose (51%).

5.    Most survey respondents (94%) anticipated undertaking at least one activity using benefits
      gained at ICASA 2008, with a large majority anticipating undertaking three or more
      activities (81%). Sharing information with colleagues was the activity most frequently
      identified (by 85% of respondents); however, more than half the respondents planned to
      follow-up new contacts, strengthen advocacy or policy work, develop a new partnership or
      collaboration, and apply new insights to prevention programmes.

6.    The vast majority of survey respondents would recommend the International Conference
      on AIDS and STIs to a colleague (93%) and just over three-quarters would choose to attend
      the next conference based on their experience of ICASA 2008 (77%).




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
Programme
7.   The vast majority of survey respondents ‘agreed’ or ‘strongly agreed’ that their
     main track of interest had addressed current research questions and issues (92%),
     and examined how research can inform policy and programmes (89%). At least 75%
     of respondents rated the overall range of topics covered, usefulness of information
     presented and quality of speakers ‘good’ or ‘excellent’. The overall quality of
     sessions received a slightly lower rating (rated ‘good’ or excellent’ by 69%) and the
     quality of discussion and debate received the lowest rating (rated ‘good’ or
     ‘excellent’ by 60%).

9.    Plenary sessions, parallel/special sessions and skills building workshops were
      deemed the most useful types of sessions (identified by 55%, 41% and 33% of
      respondents, respectively), and poster viewing was deemed the least useful
      (identified by only 9%). Almost two-thirds of survey respondents would like more
      skills building sessions offered in the programme (61%).

Organization
10. Pre-conference services received mixed ratings. Although at least 70% of
     respondents rated accessing the conference website, registering online and
     submitting an abstract ‘easy’ or ‘very easy’, only half the respondents rated paying
     registration and obtaining requested information ‘easy’ or ‘very easy’. Two-thirds of
     respondents rated booking accommodation ‘difficult’ or ‘very difficult’.

11.   Aspects of on-site organization and logistics also received mixed ratings. While the
      PLHIV Lounge, conference venue and facilities and The Village were rated ‘good’ or
      ‘excellent’ by approximately 70% of respondents, approximately 50% of respondents
      rated on-site registration and badge and bag collection ‘poor’.

12.   Although a small sample, feedback from members of the International Steering
      Committee emphasised positive changes in the committee’s operations, the
      implementation of the four principles guiding the conference, and the programme
      building process.



3.2     ICASA 2005
Findings demonstrated that the 14th International Conference on AIIDS and STIs in Africa had a
positive and long-term impact on HIV work at individual, organizational and country levels.

Individual impact: Most interviewees (89%) identified a benefit gained at the conference and a
large majority (80%) reported that they had made a change in their practice as a result. The
most frequent changes were refinement of current work or the undertaking of a new project.

Organizational impact: Just over two-thirds of interviewees (65%) reported that the conference
had directed or influenced the HIV work in their organization, most commonly resulting in a
change in direction or focus.



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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
Country-level impact: A similar proportion of interviewees (63%) noted the conference had
influenced HIV work in their country, most frequently influencing current practice, guidelines or
policy.



4. Discussion

A number of findings warrant comment, especially those relating to aspects of planning
and logistics, and these are discussed in Section 4. Two key findings are discussed below.

The first relates to the value of networking. There was a high level of congruence between the
most frequently identified reason for attending ICASA 2008 (networking), the main benefit
gained (new contacts and opportunities for partnership and collaboration) and two key
anticipated post-conference activities (follow-up new contacts, and develop a collaboration).
This finding underlines the valuable role of informal learning and support, both during and after
ICASA 2008, and the value placed on interactive activities by many participants. Interestingly,
however, another type of opportunity for interaction, poster viewing, received relatively poor
ratings. Poster viewing can offer a useful, informal mechanism for discussion and sharing of best
practice, in addition to providing an opportunity to meet other professionals. It will be important
to extend the scope and raise the profile of this under-utilized activity at future conferences.

The second finding relates to future ICASA. Ensuring that the strengths of ICASA 2008 are built
upon, key issues are addressed, and institutional memory is maintained when the conference
moves to its next location remains an ongoing challenge. Quite a large proportion of survey
respondents considered ICASA 2008 had strengthened the Society on AIDS in Africa for
involvement in future conferences; however, only a small proportion were members of the
Society and the type of infrastructure required to strengthen the Society’s involvement and
retain institutional memory requires further investigation.



5.      Conclusions


Evaluation findings demonstrated strong support for ICASA 2008. Findings also revealed
that the conference provided an appropriate and sound mechanism to achieve its
objectives.

The evaluation also highlighted the ongoing need for future conference programmes to
continue to address the challenges of achieving universal access, to facilitate the
translation of research into evidence-based policy and programmes, and to focus on the
needs of vulnerable and marginalized populations. In addition, some important planning
and organizational issues were illuminated which require attention.

Findings about the longer-term impact of ICASA 2005 revealed that the conference had a
marked, positive effect on the HIV work of a number of individuals, organizations and
countries over the past three years.




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
                        1.       CONTEXT AND METHODOLOGY

1.1        Background

The 15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA 2008) was held in Dakar,
Senegal, 3 – 7 December, 2008. The conference was organized by the Republic of Senegal and
the Society on AIDS in Africa (SAA), and 12 co-organizers.

The theme of the conference was Africa’s response: Face the facts and five objectives were
developed to address the theme:

1. To create an atmosphere conducive to information, exchange, experiences, and evaluation
   of the response to the epidemic in Africa.
2. To aim for greater coherence in the design and implementation of AIDS programs by
   cultivating synergy among scientific, community, and leadership approaches.
3. To heighten public awareness of the continuing impact of HIV/AIDS and STIs and the
   importance of international solidarity in the response.
4. To promote universal access to prevention, care, and treatment of HIV/AIDS and STIs by
   reinforcing the engagement of leaders through concrete action that integrates decision-
   makers from the public and private sectors.
5. To build an institutional memory by strengthening the SAA and follow-up to ICASA 2008.

Conference planning was overseen by a 69-person International Steering Committee1, assisted by
three Programme Committees which reflected the three programme strands (Science,
Community, Leadership) and a Local Organizing Committee and its Task Forces.

The ICASA 2008 programme comprised oral abstract sessions (n=49; accepted abstracts=209),
non-abstract-driven sessions (n=31), special sessions (n=13), skills-building workshops (n=33) and
a poster exhibition (n=606). Other related programme activities included satellite meetings,
commercial and non-commercial exhibition booths (n=83) and The Village, a community
exhibition and meeting space.

The abstract-driven programme was built around five tracks:
•  Track A: Biology and Pathogenesis of HIV (45 abstracts)
•  Track B: Clinical Research, Treatment and Care (40 abstracts)
•  Track C: Epidemiology, Prevention and Prevention Research (48 abstracts)
•  Track D: Social and Behavioural Sciences (40 abstracts)
•  Track E: Policy and Health Economics (35 abstracts).

Approximately 6,500 participants attended the conference. This figure included 3,721 paid,
regular delegates representing 86 countries, and more than 2,500 other participants. The latter



1
    Members included representatives of SAA, Co-organizers, Partners, Sponsors, Funding Agencies and
    Committee Chairs

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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
included group registrants, committee members, scholarship recipients (n= 870) 2, media
representatives, hostesses, volunteers (n~300), exhibitors (n~240) accompanying persons (n~90).
A large majority of paid, regular delegates came from low and middle income countries (83%);
the remainder came from high income countries3. A large majority of regular, paid delegates
also came from the Africa region (82%) (see Figure 1)




                                    Asia (1%)


                             South
                            America &
                            Caribbean                             Africa
                             (<1%)                                (82%)

                           North
                          America
                           (4%)


                                 Europe
                                 (12%)




                   Figure 1.1: Paid, regular delegates by global region (n=3,607)

The majority of delegates who came from the African region came from West Africa (53%)
(see Figure 2).




                                                   North Africa
                                     Southern         (1%)
                                    Africa (18%)




                               East Africa                         West Africa
                                 (19%)                               (53%)



                                       Central
                                     Africa (9%)




              Figure 1.2: African paid, regular delegates by African region (n=2,975)


2
  156 were full scholarships and 714 were partial scholarships. The latter provided any combination of
   conference registration fee, economy-class airfare, accommodation and per diem.
3
  Defined by the World Bank.

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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
1.2        The Evaluation


1.2.1 Objectives

Although ICASA 2008 was the 15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa, few
previous conferences had been systematically evaluated, and the evaluation of ICASA 2005 had
mainly reviewed conference planning and logistics4. It was decided, therefore, that the primary
focus of the evaluation of ICASA 2008 would be its immediate and short-term impact on
participants, as well as some key programming and planning elements, and the longer-term
impact of ICASA 2005. This emphasis is reflected in the three evaluation objectives:

i.         To review key conference processes and activities to guide the planning of future
           conferences;
ii.        To consider the immediate and short-term impact of ICASA 2008 on participants;
iii.       To investigate the longer-term impact of ICASA 2005 at the individual,
           organizational and country levels.



1.2.2 Methodology

A range of methods was used to collect qualitative and quantitative data to address these
objectives, including:

•      Review of conference documentation, the ICASA 2008 website, previous conference
       reports and relevant monitoring and activity data;
•      Consultation with secretariat staff;
•      Interviews with and surveys of key informants including conference participants and
       members of conference committees.

Participant survey

The main data collection instrument was an online survey which, due to the proximity of
the Christmas/holiday season, was distributed two weeks after the conference had ended.
The survey remained active for four weeks, during which time two reminders were sent to
non-responders.

The survey was available in French and English and comprised 58 closed questions and
three open-ended questions. It sought a range of information including:


•      Demographic details (e.g., country of work, main occupation, length of time working
       in HIV/AIDS field);
•      Main reason for attending the conference;
•      Ratings of the conference programme, planning and organization;


4
    ICASA 2005 Evaluation Report (undated), Prepared by K.I.T. Association and Conference Management
     Group, p.9.

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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
•   Feedback about the success of the conference in achieving its objectives and its
    immediate impact on participants.

As the list of conference participants had not been finalized when the survey was
distributed, all people with an individual email address who had either registered online
prior to ICASA 2008, or who had registered on-site at the conference were sent an email
invitation to complete the survey5. People who received an invitation but had not
attended the conference were asked to check one of two boxes, indicating they had not
attended the conference, or they had attended but not as a delegate (e.g., they had been
an exhibitor).

Surveys were emailed to 8,819 people of which 1082 (12%) could not be delivered6. Of the
7,739 people who received an email, 1,972 (25%) replied. However, 811 people in this
group did not complete a survey, indicating they had not attended ICASA 2008 (n=526) or
they had attended the conference, but not as a delegate (n=285).

A total of 1,161 completed surveys were received, resulting in a 17% response rate7.
Although an exact figure for conference attendance is not available, there were
approximately 3,721 registered, paid regular delegates, and more than 2,500 other
participants, many of whom also attended conference sessions8. Therefore, a minimum of
18% of participants who attended ICASA 2008 provided evaluative feedback about the
conference.

Participant interview

During ICASA 2008, the opportunity was taken to interview people who had attended the
previous conference (ICASA 2005) held in Abuja, Nigeria, to collect information about the longer-
term impact of that conference. Participants were approached in a variety of locations within
the conference venue and asked if they had attended ICASA 2005. Those who replied ‘yes’ were
invited to take part in a short, 5 to 10 minute interview about the impact of that conference on
their work in HIV /STIs, and the HIV /STIs work of their organization and their country.
Approximately 200 people were approached, 46 of whom had attended ICASA 2005 and took part
in an interview.

The interview was offered in French and English and comprised 10 closed questions and six open-
ended questions. It sought information about any benefits the delegate had gained from
attending ICASA 2005, the impact of the conference at the individual, organizational and country
levels, and brief demographic information.




5
  The evaluator was given a list of more than 11,000 email addresses but when duplicates and group
   addresses were removed the number dropped to 8,819.
6
  The main reasons for non-delivery (bounce-backs) were that the emails address did not exist or the email
   address was no longer available.
7
  Calculated after excluding those respondents who indicated they did not attend ICASA 2008, or had
   attended but not as a participant, as well as emails that could not be delivered.
8
  A final figure is not available because on-site registration was done manually, the IT system malfunctioned
   during the first three days of the conference, and some pre-registrants did not attend.

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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
International Steering Committee member survey

The International Steering Committee (ISC) comprised 69 people who represented a wide range
of global, African and Senegalese organizations. Forty ISC members (selected because they
represented this range of organizations) were sent a short, bilingual email survey prior to the
conference The survey comprised 13 closed questions and two open-ended questions and sought
information about the operation of the committee, and conference planning and programme
building.

Twelve people responded to the survey, representing a 32% response rate9.


Data analysis

Responses to open-ended questions were transcribed and analysed for content and key
themes. Responses in French to open-ended questions were translated into English prior to
analysis. Frequencies and cross-tabulations were tallied for closed questions. Total
numbers (Ns) vary in some instances because non-responses were excluded from valid
data. Statistical comparisons, including chi-square, were employed in the analysis of the
data. Where the term significant is used in the report, differences have been found with
a probability of at most α 0.05. Where appropriate, the qualitative and quantitative
survey information was triangulated to illuminate similarities and differences and to
highlight key issues10.




9
    Three emails could not be delivered.
10
     Parlett, M. & Hamilton, D. (1976). Evaluation as Illumination: a new approach to the study of innovatory
     programs. In Glass, G (Ed.) Evaluation Studies: Review Annual. Sage: Beverley Hills, CA

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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
         2.       FINDINGS: ICASA 2008 IMPACT, PROGRAMME AND
                     ORGANIZATION (PARTICIPANT SURVEY)

2.1     Characteristics of survey respondents

Information about survey respondents’ age, gender, occupation, organizational affiliation,
length of time in the HIV/AIDS field, main country of work and attendance at previous
conferences is presented in this section.

2.1.1 Age and gender
More than half the survey respondents were female (60%); the remainder identified as male
(40%); two people identified as transgender (see Table 2.1).

                                Table 2.1: Gender of survey respondents
                                                               % Survey
                                            Gender
                                                             respondents
                                                              (n=1,161)

                                     Female                       60

                                     Male                         40

                                     Transgender                  <1
                                                     Total       100



Just over half the respondents were under 40 years of age (55%) (see Table 2.2).

                                  Table 2.2: Age of survey respondents
                                                               % Survey
                                             Age             respondents
                                                              (n=1,161)

                                     Under 26 years                5

                                     26 – 40 years                50

                                     41 – 60 years                43

                                     Over 60 years                 2
                                                     Total       100




2.1.2 Main occupation/profession and type of organization
Survey respondents were asked to select their main occupation from an 11-item list.
Clinician/physician was the occupation most frequently selected (by 17% of respondents)
(see Table 2.3).




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
                     Table 2.3: Main occupation/profession of survey respondents
                                                                             % Survey
                                    Occupation/profession                  respondents*
                                                                             (n=1,161)

                      Clinician/physician                                       17

                      Other health worker/social services provider              13

                      Policy/administrator                                      13

                      Researcher/scientist                                      12

                      Advocate/activist                                          9

                      Teacher/educator                                           9

                      Funder                                                     4

                      Journalist/media representative                            2

                      Student                                                    2

                      Volunteer                                                  2

                      Pharmaceutical representative/manufacturer                 1

                      Other (nominated by respondent and                        16
                      generally in one of the above categories)

                                                                  Total         100




Survey respondents were asked to select their main affiliation or organization from a 15-item
list. Large non-government organization was most frequently selected (by 25% of respondents)
(see Table 2.4).

                       Table 2.4: Main type of organization of survey respondents
                                                                            % Survey
                                     Type of organization                 respondents
                                                                           (n=1,161)

                         Large non-government                                   25

                         Academia (e.g. university, research                    14

                         Intergovernmental (e.g. UN, WHO)                       13

                         Government                                             12

                         Hospital/clinic                                        11

                         Grass-roots community based                              9

                         PLHIV group/network/organization                         4

                         Private company (not pharmaceutical)                     2

                         Media                                                    2

                         Charitable foundation                                    1

                         Pharmaceutical company                                   1

                         Other (e.g. Trade Union, Cooperative,                    6
                         self-employed)

                                                               Total           100



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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
2.1.3 Country of origin and main country of work
Survey respondents represented 86 countries. The country of origin and the main country
of work of the largest proportion of survey respondents was Senegal (identified by 12% and
13% respectively) (see Table 2.5).


           Table 2.5: Most frequently reported countries of origin, countries of work &
                                 countries given at registration
                                                   Survey           Survey      Paid regular
                              Country           respondents      respondents     delegates
                                                % country of     % country of   % country at
                                                    origin           work       registration
                                                 (n=1,161)        (n=1,161)      (n=3607)

                    Senegal                          12              13             17

                    Nigeria                           7              7              7

                    Burkina Faso                      7              7              5

                    France                            7              5              6

                    Kenya                             5              5              4

                    Cameroon                          4              3              2

                    United States                     4              2              3

                    Benin                             3              3              3

                    South Africa                      3              4              13

                    Uganda                            3              3              2

                    Ivory Coast                       3              3              3

                    Mali                              3              3              3

                    More than one country            n/a             3             n/a




2.1.4 Years worked in HIV/AIDS and/or STI field
More than one-third of survey respondents (38%) had worked in the HIV/AIDS and/or STI field for
less than six years. Just under one-third (30%) had worked in the field for more than 10 years
(see Table 2.6).

                      Table 2.6: Years worked in HIV/AIDS by survey respondents
                                                               % Respondents
                                            Number
                                                                 (n=1,161)

                                    2 or less                         11

                                    3-5                               27

                                    6-10                              32

                                    11-15                             17

                                    more than 15                      13
                                                     Total          100




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
2.1.5 Main area of work/activity
Almost equal proportions of respondents worked in the HIV/AIDS area, and in the HIV/AIDS
and STIs area (45% and 40% respectively). Only a small proportion worked in the area of
STIs alone (1%) (see Table 2.7). Respondents who selected ‘other’ for their main area of
work were not asked to describe their area of work.

                       Table 2.7: Main area of work of survey respondents
                                                              % Respondents
                                              Area
                                                                (n=1,161)

                                      HIV/AIDS                      45

                                      HIV/AIDS & STIs               40

                                      STIs                           1

                                      Other                         14
                                                      Total        100




2.1.6 Attendance at other conferences
Survey respondents were asked whether they had attended the three previous International
Conferences on AIDS and STIs in Africa held in Abuja (2005), Nairobi (2003) and Ouagadougou
(2001), or another ICASA. ICASA 2008 was the first ICASA attended by a large majority of
respondents (70%). Only small proportions of respondents had attended any of the three previous
conferences (13%, 11% and 12% respectively) (see Table 2.8).

Respondents were also asked if they had attended the XVII International AIDS Conference (AIDS
2008) held in Mexico City, August 2008. A slightly higher proportion of respondents (16%) had
attended that conference (see Table 2.8).

                        Table 2.8: Conference attendance by survey respondents
                                                                         %
                                              Conference            respondents
                                                                     (n=1,161)

                               14th ICASA, Abuja 2005                    13
                                 th
                               13 ICASA, Nairobi 2003                    11

                               12th ICASA, Ouagadougou, 2001             12

                               An ICASA not listed above                 8

                               AIDS 2008                                 16




2.1.7 Main track of interest at ICASA 2008
The conference programme comprised five tracks. Social and Behavioural Sciences (Track D) and
Epidemiology, Prevention and Prevention Research (Track C) were the main tracks of interest of
the largest proportions of respondents (29% and 26% respectively). Only small proportions of



                                                                                                16
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
respondents selected Biology and Pathogenesis of HIV (Track A) and Policy and Health Economics
(Track E) as their main track of interest (6% and 10% respectively) (see Table 2.9).

                         Table 2.9: Main track of interest of survey respondents
                                                                     % Respondents
                                           Track
                                                                       (n=1,149)

                        A: Biology & Pathogenesis of HIV                        6

                        B: Clinical Research, Treatment & Care                 20

                        C: Epidemiology, Prevention & Prevention
                          Research                                             26

                        D: Social & Behaviourial Sciences                      29

                        E: Policy & Health Economics                           10

                        No main track of interest                               9

                                                             Total            100




2.1.8 Membership of Society on AIDS in Africa
A large majority of survey respondents (86%) were not members of the Society on AIDS in Africa.
Nine percent (n=104) were members; a further 5% did not know if they had membership.



2.1.9 Representativeness of survey sample
Conference participants’ country was the only type of demographic information collected at
registration. A comparison of survey respondents with the 3,607 regular, paid delegates for
whom this information was available showed that, overall, the survey sample was representative
with respect to country, with the exception of participants from South Africa who were under-
represented in the survey sample (see Table 2.5).



2.1.10 Survey of International Steering Committee members
Twelve members of the ICASA 2008 International Steering Committee (ISC) provided feedback
about the committee’s operations, the achievement of the four principles which guided the
conference, and conference planning and programme building.

Equal numbers of males and females completed the survey. Half the respondents worked in an
international organization. Four respondents’ organizations were based outside Africa. A further
eight respondents’ organizations were based in Africa, of which three were in Senegal.

Where appropriate, findings from the ISC member survey are reported to supplement findings
from the online participant survey.




                                                                                               17
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
2.2     Conference Impact

The impact of ICASA 2008 was investigated in terms of its effect on participants and their work in
HIV/AIDS and/or STIs, and the achievement of five key conference objectives.

2.2.1   How participants learned about ICASA 2008

Survey respondents were asked to identify how they had learned about ICASA 2008 from a seven-
item list. A recommendation from a colleague or friend was the most frequently identified
source of information (selected by 27% respondents) (see Table 2.10). Most responses in the
’other’ category named the respondent’s workplace or a specific organization.

                          Table 2.10: Source of information about ICASA 2008
                                                                          % Respondents
                                           Source
                                                                            (n=1,153)

                       Recommended by a colleague/friend                          27

                       Conference invitation programme/brochure                   18

                       Through the internet/email                                 16

                       Attended previous ICASA/aware of schedule                  13

                       At a workshop/conference                                   10

                       Not sure                                                    1

                       Other                                                      15
                                                                 Total           100



2.2.2 Participants’ reasons for attending ICASA 2008
Survey respondents were asked to identify up to two main reasons for attending ICASA 2008 from
an eight-item list. Although networking was selected by the largest proportion of respondents
(45%), programme content and presentation of a paper or poster were also important factors
(selected by 36% and 26% of respondents respectively) (see Table 2.11).

                           Table 2.11: Main reasons for attending ICASA 2007
                                                                          % Respondents*
                                           Reason
                                                                             (n= 394)

                       Networking opportunities                                   45

                       Programme content                                          36

                       Presenting paper or poster                                 26

                       Skill-building opportunities                               19

                       Organizing satellite, workshop or exhibition               19

                       Recipient of scholarship or grant                           8

                       Geographic location (Dakar, Senegal)                        5

                       Other                                                       5
                                                                 Total           100
                          *Total exceeds 100 as more than one benefit could be selected



                                                                                               18
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
2.2.3 Achievement of key objectives
Survey respondents were asked to rate how successful the conference had been in achieving the
following key objectives using a four-point scale:

1.    Facilitating the exchange of information and experience about the epidemic in Africa;
2.    Creating an atmosphere conducive to evaluating the response to the epidemic in Africa;
3.    Bringing together decision-makers from the public and private sectors to lead and promote
      universal access to prevention, care and treatment of HIV/AIDS and STIs;
4.    Cultivating synergy between science, community and leadership to increase coherence in
      the design and implementation of AIDS programmes;
5.    Strengthening the Society on AIDS in Africa (SAA) for involvement in future conferences

Overall, survey respondents were positive in their assessment. A large majority considered the
conference had been ‘successful’ or ‘very successful’ in facilitating the exchange of information
and experience about the epidemic in Africa (86%) (see Table 2.12).

At least two-thirds of respondents deemed the conference to have been ‘successful’ or ‘very
successful’ in strengthening the Society on AIDS in Africa for involvement in future conferences
(71%); cultivating synergy between science, community and leadership to increase coherence in
AIDS programmes (69%); creating an atmosphere conducive to evaluating the response to the
epidemic (68%); and bringing together decision-makers to lead/promote universal access (68%).

A very small proportion of respondents rated the conference ‘not successful’ in achieving each
objective (6% or less).


                      Table 2.12: Ratings of achievement of conference objectives
                                               Very     Successful Somewhat            Not           Total*
                      Objective
                                             successful            successful       successful        (%)

           1. Facilitating exchange of
            information (n=1,134)                32          52           14            2            100

           2. Creating atmosphere to
            evaluate response (n=1,117)          25          45           25            5            100

           5. Strengthening SAA for
            future involvement (n=951)           29          42           24            5            100
           4. Cultivating synergy to
            increase programme                   28          41           25            5            100
            coherence (n=1,084)

           3. Bringing together
            decision-makers (n=1,082)            29          39           26            6            100

                   * Respondents who indicated they did not know were not included in the data set




When ratings of Objective 3 and Objective 4 were further analyzed, looking for differences in
relation to occupation/profession, it was found that there was no significant relationship
between a rating of ‘successful’ or ‘very successful’ and a respondent’s occupation/profession.




                                                                                                              19
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
2.2.4 Professional benefits gained from attending ICASA 2008
Survey respondents were asked to identify any benefits they had gained as a result of attending
ICASA 2008 from an eight-item list. Almost all respondents who answered this question reported
that they had benefited professionally from attending ICASA 2008 (99%). The establishment of
new contacts and opportunities for partnership and collaboration was the most frequently
identified benefit, followed by an improved understanding of the epidemic in Africa (selected by
73% and 63% of respondents respectively) (see Table 2.13).

                            Table 2.13: Main benefits gained from ICASA 2008
                                                                               % Respondents*
                                               Benefit
                                                                                  (n=1,161)

                   New contacts and opportunities for partnership and                  73
                   collaboration

                   Improved understanding of the epidemic in Africa                    63

                   Renewed sense of purpose                                            51

                   New insights into the prevention of HIV & STIs                      49

                   New insights into treatment and care of HIV & STIs                  43

                   New insights into the science of HIV & STIs                         42

                   Affirmation of current research or practice                         40

                   Other                                                                   3

                   Did not gain anything                                                   1

                           *Total exceeds 100 as more than one benefit could be selected




A total of 4,231 benefits was identified by 1,149 survey respondents. Almost three-quarters
reported they had gained three or more benefits (72%) (see Table 2.14).

                                   Table 2.14: Number of benefits gained
                                                            % Respondents
                                               Number
                                                              (n=1,149)
                                           1                     12
                                           2                     16
                                           3                     21
                                           4 or more             51
                                                    Total        100




When this question was further analyzed, looking for differences related to length of time in
field and occupation, it was found that whether a respondent gained three or more benefits was
not significantly related to:
•   the length of time the respondent had worked in HIV/AIDS and/or STIs, or
•   the respondent’s occupation.




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
2.2.5 Anticipated use of benefits gained at ICASA 2008
Survey respondents were asked to identify how they anticipated using the benefit/s they had
gained at ICASA 2008 from a list of nine activities. Most respondents anticipated undertaking at
least one activity (94%); the remainder reported they were unsure or would not do anything
differently. Sharing new information with colleagues was by far the most frequently identified
follow-up activity, selected by a large majority of respondents (85%); however, more than half
the respondents intended to follow up new contacts, strengthen advocacy or policy work,
develop a new partnership or collaboration, or apply new insights to prevention programmes
(see Table 2.15).

                      Table 2.15: Anticipated use of benefits gained at ICASA 2008
                                                                            % Respondents*
                                             Activity
                                                                               (n=1,158)

                      Share new information with colleagues                      85

                      Follow up new contacts                                     60

                      Strengthen advocacy or policy work                         55

                      Develop a new partnership or collaboration                 54

                      Apply new insights to prevention programmes                53

                      Apply new insights to care & support                       41
                      programmes

                      Initiate a new project/activity/research                   40

                      Apply new insights to research                             28

                      Apply new insights to clinical practice                    17

                      I am unsure                                                 1

                      Other                                                       1

                         *Total exceeds 100 as more than one response could be selected




Most respondents intended undertaking more than one follow-up activity (92%), and a large
majority planned to undertake three or more (81%)(see Table 2.16). A total of 5,051 activities
was identified by 1,132 respondents.

                               Table 2.16: Number of anticipated activities
                                                            % Respondents
                                             Number
                                                              (n=1,132)
                                         1                        8
                                         2                       11
                                         3                       16
                                         4 or more               65
                                                    Total        100




                                                                                                   21
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
When this question was further analyzed, it was found that respondents who had worked in the
field for three to five years were significantly more likely to say they would undertake three or
more activities, compared to respondents who had worked in the field for two years or less11.



2.2.6 Professional value of ICASA 2008
As an indicator of the conference’s professional value, survey respondents were asked if they
would recommend the International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa to a colleague.
Almost all respondents stated that they would recommend the conference (93%).

Survey respondents were also asked if they would choose to attend the next conference, based
on their experience of ICASA 2008. The majority (77%) indicated they would choose to attend.
The remainder were unsure (18%) or would not attend (5%).

Respondents who indicated they would not choose to attend (n=60) were asked why this was,
and 40 people provided reasons. The most frequently noted reason, identified by half the
respondents, related to poor conference organization. Other reasons related to cost, or the fact
that the conference provided limited new information, was not perceived to be useful, or was
too close in timing to the International AIDS Conference.




2.3        Conference Programme

The potential impact of a conference is influenced by the quality and relevance of its
programme. Feedback was sought from survey respondents about key programme elements (e.g.,
quality of sessions), the five programme tracks, the range of topics covered, preferred session
types and activities (e.g., plenary sessions, networking), and the overall usefulness of content.

2.3.1 Conference orientation session
The day before ICASA 2008 began, a conference orientation session was held for community
participants. Some survey respondents (13%, n=148) had attended the session and these
respondents were asked to rate its usefulness using a four-point scale. The session was highly
regarded, with 86% of respondents rating it ‘useful’ or ‘very useful’ (see Table 2.17).

                                    Table 2.17: Rating of orientation session
                                                               % Respondents
                                              Rating
                                                                  (n=138)
                                         Very useful                40
                                         Useful                     46
                                         Somewhat useful            10
                                         Not useful                 6
                                                       Total       100


11
     3 to 5 years (85.1%) versus 2 or less years (70.7%); p<0.05



                                                                                                    22
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
2.3.2 Quality of programme elements
Survey respondents were asked to rate the overall quality of sessions, speakers, chairpersons,
discussion and debate, and the range of topics covered using a four-point scale. The most highly
rated programme elements were the range of topics covered, the usefulness of the information
presented and the quality of speakers (each rated ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ by at least 75% of
respondents). The overall quality of sessions received a slightly lower rating (rated ‘good’ or
excellent’ by 69%). The quality of discussion and debate received the lowest rating (rated ‘good’
or ‘excellent’ by 60% (see Table 2.18).

                                   Table 2.18: Rating of programme elements
                                Aspect                    Excellent   Good   Fair   Poor   Total (%)

               Range of topics covered (n=1,124))            26        49    22      3       100

               Usefulness of information (n=1,123)           23        52    22      3       100

               Quality of speakers (n=1,128)                 20        57    22      1       100

               Quality of chairpersons/moderators            16        56    25      3       100
               (n=1,121)

               Quality of sessions (n=1,135)                 12        57    28      3       100

               Quality of discussion & debate (n=1,130)      13        47    33      7       100




When the ratings for the quality of sessions, usefulness of information, and range of topics were
further analyzed, looking for differences related to length of time in the field and main track of
interest, it was found that:
•     a rating of ‘good’ or excellent’ for usefulness of information and range of topics was not
      significantly related to the length of time a respondent had worked in the field, or to a
      respondent’s main track of interest.
•     respondents whose main track of interest was Track B or Track C were significantly more
      likely to rate the quality of the sessions as ‘good’ than respondents whose main track of
      interest was Track A12.



2.3.3 Quality of programme tracks
The abstract-driven programme at ICASA 2008 comprised five tracks:
A: Biology and Pathogenesis of HIV;
B: Clinical Research, Treatment and Care;
C: Epidemiology, Prevention and Prevention Research;
D: Social and Behavioural Sciences, and
E: Policy & Health Economics.




12
     Track B (58%), Track C (64%) versus Track A (46%); p<0.05

                                                                                                       23
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
Survey respondents were asked to consider their main track of interest (the track in which they
attended the most sessions), and to indicate their level of agreement with the following
statements:
•   The track addressed current research issues and questions, and
•   The track examined how research can inform policy and programmes.

Almost two-thirds of respondents ‘agreed’ and just over one quarter ‘strongly agreed’ that their
main track of interest had addressed current research questions and issues, and had examined
how research can inform policy and programmes (see Table 2.19)

                                    Table 2.19: Rating of overall track quality
                               Aspect                 Strongly   Agree     Disagree    Strongly    Total*
                                                       agree                           disagree     (%)

                Track addressed current
                research questions & issues              29        63         5           2        100
                (n=981)

                Track examined how research
                can inform policy &                      27        62         8           3        100
                programmes (n=937)

   * Respondents who indicated they did not know or who had no main track of interest were not included in the data set




When these ratings were further analyzed by track (by collapsing the four-point scale into a two-
point, agree-disagree scale), it was found that respondents in each track had similarly high levels
of agreement with each statement (see Table 2.20).

                             Table 2.20: Rating of overall quality of science by track
                          Track addressed current research        Agree     Disagree     Total*
                          questions & issues                                               (%)

                          Track A (n=66)                            94          6         100
                          Track B (n=225)                           94          6         100
                          Track C (n=287)                           97          3         100
                          Track D (n=306)                           89         11         100
                          Track E (n=97)                            90         10         100


                          Track examined how research can         Agree     Disagree      Total
                          inform policy & programmes                                       (%)

                          Track A (n=60)                            88         12         100
                          Track B (n=821)                           90         10         100
                          Track C (n=270)                           90         10         100
                          Track D (n=299)                           87         13         100
                          Track E (n=100)                           90         10         100

                     * Respondents who indicated they did not know were not included in the data set




                                                                                                                          24
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
2.3.4 Most valuable types of sessions and activities
Respondents were asked to identify the two types of sessions or activities they had found most
valuable at ICASA 2008. Plenary sessions were by far the most popular (55%), followed by
parallel/special sessions (41%) (see Table 2.21).

                           Table 2.21: Most valuable session/activities at ICASA 2008
                                                                        % Respondents
                                                  Type
                                                                          (n=1,161)

                                  Plenary sessions                              55

                                  Parallel/special sessions                     41

                                  Skills-building workshops                     33

                                  Satellite meetings                            22

                                  Informal networking                           15

                                  The Village                                   11

                                  Poster viewing sessions                        9

                                  Other                                          2

                        *Total exceeds 100 as respondents were asked to identify two session types




2.3.5 Preferred mix of sessions and activities
Respondents were asked if they would change the mix of the programme for the next
conference. The vast majority of respondents would like more skills-building workshops (61%) or
would like the current number of workshops maintained (25%). At least 40% of respondents
would not change the number of plenary sessions, parallel/special sessions, satellite meeting or
poster viewing sessions. The proportions of respondents who would like either more or less of
these types of sessions were reasonably similar (see Table 2.22).

                              Table 2.22: Preferred programme mix for next ICASA

                             Session type            More of     No      Less of       No      Total
                                                      these    change     these      opinion    (%)

                     Skills-building (n=1,076)           61      25         4          10       100
                     Parallel/special (n=1,049)          29      40         21         10       100
                     Plenary (n=1,088)                   24      55         13          8       100
                     Satellite (n=1,056)                 24      40         17         19       100
                     Poster viewing (n=1,017)            22      44         19         15       100




When responses relating to skills building were further analyzed in relation to length of time in
the field and main track of interest, it was found that:
    respondents who had worked in the field for less than six years were significantly more likely
    to say they would like more skills building workshops than people who had worked in the
    field for longer13;

13
     2 or less years (63%), 3 – 5 years (68%) versus 6 or more years (57%); p<0.05

                                                                                                       25
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
       respondents whose main track of interest was Track E or Track C were significantly more
       likely to say they would like more skills building workshops than delegates whose main track
       of interest was Track A14.



2.3.6 Comments about the programme
Survey respondents were asked if they had any additional comments about the conference
programme and 297 people (26%) responded. A small number (approximately 15) made a brief,
positive statement (e.g., ‘Programme good’, ‘Well done’). The vast majority of respondents
offered suggestions or highlighted areas for improvement. These most frequently related to
programme time-tabling and particular topics, issues or groups. Other aspects, noted by smaller
proportions of respondents, related to areas such as programme quality and the balance of
sessions (see Table 2.23)

                                 Table 2.23: Comments about the programme
                                                                    % Respondents*
                                       Focus of comment
                                                                       (n=297)

                               Time-tabling                              32

                               Content/representation                    31

                               Programme quality                         15

                               Balance of sessions                       13

                               Other                                     14

                               Brief positive statement                   5

                             *Total exceeds 100 as more than one comment could be made




Programme time-tabling and timing (n=93)
The vast majority of comments in this category noted that too many sessions had been scheduled
at the same time, resulting in participants having to miss some important sessions. Other
comments related to overcrowding in the programme and the fact that too many sessions were
offered. Several people either recommended extending the conference by a day, or reducing the
scope of the programme.

Topics, issues or groups (n=91).
The majority of respondents in this category identified topics or issues they believed warranted
more attention in the programme. The areas most commonly noted (each by 3 or 4 people) were
the sharing of best practice, disability and HIV/AIDS, STIs, and the prevention of new HIV
infections. A wide variety of other topics was also identified (each by one or two people). These
included homosexuality, the different epidemics in Africa, injecting drug use, legal issues,
mental illness and sex work.

Several respondents felt that too much attention had been paid to some topics or issues,
including quantitative research (rather than its implementation into practice, or the role of


14
     Track C (61%), Track E ( 62%) versus Track A (41.0%), p<0.05

                                                                                                  26
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
qualitative research), and medical research (rather than social research). The under-
representation of children and young people, women, PLHIV and people with disability was noted
by several respondents, several others applauded their presence in the programme.

Quality of the programme (n=45)
Most of the comments about programme quality related to content. The comments were wide-
ranging and referred to the presentation of old or re-hashed data or limited new information,
the poor quality of some content, duplication of subject matter, and too great a focus on
superficial issues. A small number of respondents reported that the skill levels of presenters
and/or moderators and chairpersons were inconsistent; several others noted that some
presenters, especially poster presenters, had not been present at their allocated sessions.

Balance of sessions (n=40)
The lack of opportunity for discussion during and after sessions was noted by more than half the
respondents in this category. A small number of other respondents would like more
opportunities for informal information exchange; several others would like more skills building
workshops, plenary sessions, abstract-driven sessions or poster viewing opportunities.

Other comments received about the programme (made by one or two people) included making
the printed programme available earlier, ensuring the title and content of presentations match,
translating abstracts into French and English, and ensuring that sessions are not cancelled
without warning.

The following quotations exemplify the types of comments received about the programme:

             The programme was so crowded I had a hard time choosing exactly which
             sessions to attend. My recommendation would be matters that are almost
             similar to be held around the same time.

             Too many interesting topics were offered at the same time

             Excellent, well-devised programme, but too many posters of dubious
             scientific value.

             Some studies were outdated and presented on topics where there is
             strong evidence in other countries e.g., PMTCT. Youth activities were not
             clearly seen, however, it was good that ICASA involved minority groups
             e.g., men who have sex with men, traditional healers, physically
             challenged etc.

             There should be more time for discussion and feedback from participants
             in sessions. Also a few of the presenters had low skills in presenting
             information professionally and in a timely fashion which can be
             frustrating for the audience.




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
2.4     Conference planning, organization and logistics


The quality of conference planning, organization and logistics influences participants’
engagement with a conference. As part of the evaluation of ICASA 2008, feedback was sought
about pre-conference services (e.g., conference website, online registration) and logistics,
organization and services during the conference (e.g., opening ceremony, on-site registration,
PLHIV Lounge). Findings are reported in this section.

Feedback was also sought from members of the International Steering Committee about the
committee’s operations, the achievement of the four principles which guided the conference,
and conference planning and programme building. The findings are also reported in this section.



2.4.1 Pre-conference services
Survey respondents were asked to rate the ease with which they had used pre-conference
services on a four-point scale. Although quite a large majority of respondents rated accessing
the conference website, registering online and submitting an abstract ‘easy’ or ‘very easy’ (76%,
75% and 70% respectively), only around half had found it ‘easy’ or ‘very easy’ to pay registration
and obtain requested information (52% and 45% respectively). Booking accommodation attracted
the most criticism, with two-thirds of respondents (66%) rating the process ‘difficult’ or ‘very
difficult’ (see Table 2.24)


                               Table 2.24: Rating of pre-conference services
                            Aspect                        Very      Easy    Difficult    Very       Total
                                                          easy                          difficult   (%)*

            Access conference website (n=1,116)            44        32        17          7        100

            Register online (n=1,022)                      42        33        16          9        100

            Submit an abstract (n=607)                    34         36        16         14        100

            Pay registration (n=834)                       23        29        24         24        100

            Obtain requested information (n=945)           18        27        26         29        100

            Book accommodation (n=762)                     13        21        26         40        100

               * Respondents who selected ‘don’t know/not applicable’ were not included in the data set




2.4.2 Organization and logistics during the conference
Survey respondents were asked to rate nine conference services or aspects of organization using
a four-point scale. The most highly rated were the PLHIV Lounge, the Village and the conference
venue and facilities (rated ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ by 73%, 70% and 69% of respondents
respectively). All other elements were rated ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ by a majority of respondents,
with the exception of badge/bag collection and onsite registration. These services attracted the
most criticism, with approximately half the respondents rating badge/bag collection and onsite
registration ‘poor’ (54% and 47% respectively) (see Table 2.25).



                                                                                                            28
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
                                  Table 2.25: Rating of conference organization
                           Aspect                      Excellent        Good         Fair     Poor        Total (%)*

         PLHIV Lounge (n=501)                              30            43          22        5            100

         Conference venue & facilities (n=1,089)           29            40          23        8            100

         The Village (n=1,.030)                            26            44          22        8            100

         Exhibition areas/displays (n=1,034)               17            48          28        7            100

         ICASA 2008 website (n=1,096)                      20            42          28        9            100

         Opening ceremony (n=926)                          20            39          24       17            100

         Poster organization/display (n=1,004)             14            44          31       11            100

         Time-tabling of sessions (n=1,115)                12            45          33       10            100

         Conference materials (n=1,114)                    15            40          28       17            100

         Pre-conference information (n=1,022)              15            37          33       15            100

         Onsite registration (n=943)                       9             21          23       47            100

         Badge and bag collection (n=1,083)                7             17          22       54            100

               * Respondents who selected ‘don’t know/not applicable’ were not included in the data set



2.4.3 Conference interpretation service
ICASA 2008 primarily attracted English-speaking and French-speaking participants and an
interpretation service was offered in both languages. More than half the survey respondents had
accessed the service (n=671), 54% of whom had used the English-to-French service and 46% had
used the French-to-English service. These respondents were asked to rate the overall quality of
the service they had used. Each service was rated ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ by approximately half
the respondents who had used it (see Table 2.26)


                                                Table 2.26: Rating
                               Aspect              Excellent    Good          Fair    Poor    Total (%)

                    English to French                 11           40          42         7     100
                    (n=360))

                    French to English                  7           42          39      12       100
                    (n=306)




2.4.4 Comments about conference organization and logistics
Survey respondents were asked if they had any additional comments about the organization of
the conference and 411 people (35%) responded. Sixty respondents made short, general
comments, of which one-third were positive (e.g., ‘organization good’) and two-thirds were
negative (e.g., ‘overall organization poor’). The remainder offered suggestions or highlighted
areas requiring improvement. Although comments were wide-ranging, the most frequently noted
related to on-site registration, accommodation, the interpretation service, badge and bag
collection, and food at the venue (see Table 2.27)




                                                                                                                       29
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
                                                 Table 2.27: Rating
                                                                       % Respondents*
                                       Focus of comment
                                                                          (n=411)

                                On-site registration                          18

                                Accommodation                                 17

                                Interpretation                                13

                                Staff & volunteers                            13

                                Badge/bag collection                          10

                 *Total does not add up to 100 as only the most frequently identified issues are listed




On-site registration (n=73), badge and bag collection (n=41)
Comments in these categories highlighted a variety of problems associated with on-site
registration, including insufficient desks and staff, long queues, lengthy delays, computer
problems, lack of a clear procedure, the need for more bilingual staff, and issues with pre-
payment confirmation and payment on site. Long queues and lengthy delays for bag and badge
collection were also commonly noted. Some respondents reported that they had missed key
sessions as a result of delays with registration and/or badge collection

Accommodation (n=69)
A number of different problems were identified around accommodation. Some respondents who
had confirmed, pre-paid accommodation arrived to find the accommodation was not available;
others found there was no record of their booking or payment. Several respondents reported
that, as a result, they had nowhere to stay on their first night, and felt insufficient concern had
been shown for their situation.

Other respondents noted that some accommodation was sub-standard or a long way from the
venue and several suggested that accommodation, especially in private homes, should be vetted
by the conference organizers. Price was an issue for several people who noted the high cost of
hotels, or a difference in prices quoted on the website and by the hotel.

Interpretation (n=54)
The majority of comments in this category expressed concern about the need to deposit
important documentation (e.g., a passport) in order to receive headphones. Several respondents
had felt the risk was too great and so missed out on sessions. Several others reported that the
headphones did not always work. The quality of the interpretation was also an issue for some
respondents; others noted that several interpreters had either arrived late or left a session
early, and that not all sessions had provided interpretation.

Staff and volunteers (n=52)
Over half the comments in this category drew attention to the fact that the secretariat and/or
other relevant organizing groups (e.g., accommodation) did not respond to queries in a timely
manner before or during the conference, and that some email responses were only in French.




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
Several respondents suggested that a conference the size of ICASA 2008 demanded a larger
secretariat.

Other comments related to hostesses, drivers and volunteers. Some respondents noted their
helpfulness, while others identified a need for more training to ensure they had the necessary
information, for example, regarding registration and transportation. The need for more bilingual
speakers was also noted.

A variety of other issues was highlighted by smaller numbers of respondents. These included:

•     Food and the need for greater variety and higher quality, more outlets, and wider
      availability.
•     Transport and the need for bilingual speakers on airport buses, fair prices for taxis, and
      punctual transportation to and from the hotels.
•     Opening ceremony and the need for a venue that can accommodate a majority of
      participants.
•     Signage and the need for signs to be plentiful and accurate, and for maps to reflect the
      signage and the venue layout.

The following quotations exemplify the types of comments received about conference planning,
organization and logistics:

             On-site registration and collection of bags and badges needs to improve.
             Many people waited hours. This has been a major problem in previous
             conferences as well as ICASA 2008. Also the website needs to be re-
             designed to facilitate online payment.

             Some participants did not get hotels as promised and a lot of time was
             spent searching for hotels rather than attending the conference. In my
             case the accommodation was not worth the money.

             I would have liked to attend many sessions but I was hampered by the
             language barrier. I did not feel comfortable depositing my passport to
             get headphones so I missed out. Some people had their documentation
             lost – this system needs to be improved.

             It was very difficult to get information prior to the conference; emails
             were rarely replied to and on the few occasions when there was a reply
             the information was insufficient.

             Accommodation and transportation were difficult. Luckily I could speak
             French and find my way but it could have been very challenging
             otherwise.




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
2.4.5 International Steering Committee feedback

Twelve members of the ICASA 2008 International Steering Committee (ISC) provided feedback
about the committee’s operations, the achievement of the four principles which guided the
conference, and conference planning and programme building. Findings are reported in this
section.

Operations of the committee
Clarity of mandate and tasks: Using a three-point scale (not clear/somewhat clear/very clear),
eight respondents rated the committee’s mandate and tasks ‘very clear’ from the beginning;
four respondents rated them ‘somewhat clear’.

Size: Using a three-point scale (too few/about right/too many) six respondents rated the number
of members on the committee ‘about right’ for the ISC to work effectively. Five respondents felt
there were too many members and one felt there were too few.

Number of meetings: Using a three-point scale (too few/about right/too many) seven
respondents rated the number of meetings (telephone and face-to-face) ‘about right’ for the
committee to work effectively. Five respondents felt there were too few meetings.

Support for committee: Using a three-point scale (too little/about right/too much) nine
respondents rated the support provided by the Secretariat ‘about right’. One respondent felt
there was ‘too much’ support and two did not know.

Representativeness of committee: Using a three-point scale (not well/moderately well/very
well), eight respondents considered key stakeholders in the HIV/AIDS response in Africa were
‘very well’ represented on the committee. Three respondents felt stakeholders were
‘moderately well’ represented and one felt they were ‘not well’ represented.

Additional comments about ISC operations
Six respondents provided additional comments about the operations of the ISC. These primarily
related to communication, suggesting it could be enhanced by the establishment of a mechanism
to allow members to offer feedback in real-time, clear delineation of steps in the conference
planning process, and management of language barriers. Several respondents noted that in trying
to be representative, the committee became very large, and its productivity may be been
compromised. This was due both to size and because not all representatives contributed. One
respondent felt the Secretariat was insufficiently staffed to respond to the committee’s queries
in a timely manner.

Principles guiding the conference
Four principles were described in the Invitation Programme which defined ICASA 2008. These
were:
• Transparency in organizational processes;
• Integrity and openness in relationships with key stakeholders;
• Creation of a new management policy and institutional memory to guide future ICASA; and




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
•     Raising the conference profile to position ICASA as a high quality event which strives for
      excellence15.

Respondents were asked to rate the achievement of each principle just prior to the conference.
Overall, respondents rated the achievement of the conference principles quite highly, with at
least two-thirds assessing transparency of processes, integrity and openness in relationships and
success in raising the conference profile as ‘good’ or ‘excellent’. The achievement of a new
management policy and institutional memory was rated slightly lower, with just under half the
respondents rating this ‘excellent’ or ‘good’ (see Table 2.28)

                                 Table 2.28: Achievement of conference principles

                            Principle                  Excellent     Good    Fair      Poor      Don’t      Total
                                                                                                 know        (n)

             Transparency of processes                       3          5      3        0         2            12

             Integrity & openness in relationships           3          6      2        0         1            12

             Creation of new management &                    3          2      5        0         2            12
             institutional memory

             Raising conference profile                      4          4      3        0         1            12




Three respondents provided additional comments about the achievement of the ICASA 2008
principles. All noted the importance of the principles and the marked improvement in
conference processes as a result of their implementation.

Conference programme building
The conference was framed by the theme ‘Africa’s response: Face the Facts’, and five key
objectives. Feedback was sought from ISC respondents about the programme-building process,
and how well this was guided by the theme.

Overall, respondents were positive about the conference building process. Three-quarters
‘agreed’ or ‘strongly agreed’ that the conference theme had guided planning and programme-
building, the process for building the conference programme had worked well, and the theme
had been adequately addressed in the programme (see Table 2.29).

                                   Table 2.29: Planning & programme building
                                          Strongly   Agree       Disagree   Strongly     Don’t           Total
                     Statement
                                           agree                            disagree     know             (n)

             The conference theme
             guided planning and             5         4            1          0            2             12
             programme-building

             The programme-building
             process worked well             4         5            2          0            0             11

             The theme was
             adequately addressed in         4         5            1          0            1             11
             the programme


     15th ICASA: Invitation Program and Call for Abstracts (undated). Message from the Conference Chair
15

     (unpaginated)

                                                                                                                    33
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
Three respondents provided additional comments, noting that although the process had
definitely improved from previous conferences, programme development was not always
integrated or clear, and greater attention needed to be paid to STIs.



2.4.6 Other comments about ICASA 2008
At the end of the online participant survey, respondents were asked if they had any other
comments about ICASA 2008. Just under one-third (31%, n=368) provided comments which fell
into three main categories:
 •    Feedback about the programme (n=33), primarily reiterating the issues reported in Section
      2.2.5;
 •    Feedback about organization and logistics (n=107), primarily reiterating the issues reported
      in Section 2.4.1, and
 •    Positive remarks about the conference (n=185).

Respondents who provided positive feedback generally made a brief comment (e.g., ‘fantastic’,
‘a wonderful experience’), thanked or congratulated the organizers, or highlighted valuable
aspects of the conference. Several people stated that ICASA 2008 had been a better conference
than ICASA 2005; a small number advised that although the conference had been good, there was
room for improvement. The following quotations exemplify the types of comments received:

             ICASA is the only avenue that brings Africans together to share our health
             problems and solutions so it should be encouraged.

             It was a conference of sharing experiences, challenges and learning new
             innovations

             Generally, it seems that ICASA 2008 was much better organized than the
             previous ICASA. The community programme in particular was excellent.

             Congratulations for the job done, however, attention must be paid to all
             aspects of conference planning.

             It was my first time at ICASA and I learnt a lot of useful information. I also
             carried away a lot of materials which will be useful, as well as skills from
             the skills building workshops.

             Many thanks to the government of Senegal, the organizers, sponsors and all
             who helped make the conference a success.




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
            3.       FINDINGS: ICASA 2005 LONGER-TERM IMPACT
                           (PARTICIPANT INTERVIEW)


3.1     Characteristics of interviewees

During ICASA 2008, 46 participants who had attended ICASA 2005 were interviewed about the
longer-term impact of that conference. Information about interviewees’ gender, occupation,
organization, length of time in the HIV/AIDS field and country of work is presented in this
section.

The greatest proportion of interviewees’ classified themselves as policy/administrator (28%), and
the largest proportion worked in a non-government organization (26%). HIV/AIDS was the main
area of work of 75% of interviewees, and the majority had worked in the HIV field for over five
years (67%); almost one-third (30%) had worked for more than 10 years. Just over half the
interviewees were female (54%), and almost all worked in Africa; the largest proportion working
in Nigeria (33%). Almost two-thirds (61%) attended their first ICASA in 2005 (see Table 3.1).

                        Table 3.1: Summary of interviewees’ demographic details
                                                Attribute                       Percent*
                                                                                 (n=46)
                              Gender
                                Female                                            54
                                Male                                              46
                              Main occupation/profession
                                Policy/administrator                              28
                                Health care worker/social services                20
                                provider (other than clinician/physician)
                                Researcher                                        20
                              Main type of organization
                                Non-government organization                       26
                                Government                                        20
                                Intergovernmental                                 13
                                Academia                                          11
                              Years worked in HIV/AIDS
                                2 or less                                          2
                                3-5                                               31
                                6 - 10                                            36
                                11 - 15                                           20
                                More than 15                                      11
                              Main country of work
                                Nigeria                                           33
                                South Africa                                       9
                                Senegal                                            7
                                Kenya                                              7
                             Attended previous ICASA
                                No                                                61
                                yes                                               39
                  *Totals do not always equal 100 as only the most frequent responses are reported.


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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
It was not possible to determine if the interviewees were representative of all conference
participants as detailed demographic information was not collected during ICASA 2005
registration.



3.2     Benefits gained at ICASA 2005
Interviewees were asked to recall any benefits they had gained from attending the conference.
Forty-one people (89%) reported a total of 49 benefits. Five people reported they did not gain
anything from the conference.

The most frequently identified benefit related to the acquisition of new information and
knowledge. This varied from broad, general information about the epidemic, both globally and in
Africa, to specific topics such as the prevention of mother-to-child transmission, testing, anti-
retroviral therapy, drug resistance, and paediatric care. The second most frequently identified
benefit was the opportunity to meet new people, exchange ideas and experiences, and form
partnerships. Another, less commonly noted benefit was involvement in advocacy work during or
after the conference, for example, representing young people or women (see Table 3.2.


                           Table 3.2: Benefits gained by delegates at ICASA 2005

                                                                                  % respondents
                                             Benefit
                                                                                  who identified
                                                                                  benefit (n=41)*

                   New information and knowledge                                         66

                   Networking/new contacts/ information sharing                          37

                   Involvement in advocacy during or after conference                    10

                   Other                                                                     5

                           *Total exceeds 100 as more than one benefit could be identified




The following quotations exemplify the types of benefits identified:

             I learned for the first time about the integration of PMTCT with reproductive
             health services. I also learned about resistance related to the use of niverapine
             in the case of MTCT. (Physician/clinician, Burkina Faso).

             I gained knowledge about organizing a treatment adherence club (Health
             worker, Nigeria).

             I had the opportunity to build collaborations with African NGOs, gained a better
             idea of the local reality and was able to do more advocacy work
             (Policy/administrator, Canada).


Of the five interviewees who reported that they had gained very little or nothing from the
conference, two indicated this was because the conference was poorly organized or had limited
scientific content; the remainder did not provide an explanation.




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
3.3        Impact of ICASA 2005 at the individual level

Interviewees were asked if they had done anything differently in their work in HIV or STIs as a
result of attending ICASA 2005. A large majority (80%, n=36) reported a total of 44 changes made
as a result of attending the conference. These had occurred in a range of areas including
research, training, prevention, care and support. The types of changes described fell into one of
two broad categories:
•   refinement of an existing programme of activity (identified by 50%), or
•   development of a new programme or activity (identified by 50%).

The following quotations exemplify the types of changes described by interviewees:

                I trained traditional practitioners in rural areas about HIV/AIDS and what needs
                to be done with infected patients (Researcher, South Africa).

                I organized a community dialogue with women and chiefs and sought
                community support for my work (Advocate/activist, Nigeria)

                I used the knowledge gained to improve my OVC programme. I was also able to
                educate more about to prevent HIV transmission (Educator/trainer, Nigeria).

                I applied and adapted to the local context good examples of mobile testing
                teams in rural areas which had been presented at ICASA. I also contacted the
                Global Fund, wrote a proposal and finally got some funds (Researcher,
                France/Africa).

Two interviewees specifically noted that although they had not made any changes, their
motivation had increased or their current practice had been affirmed as a result of attending the
conference.



3.4        Impact of ICASA 2005 at the organizational level

Interviewees were asked if ICASA 2005 had directed or influenced any HIV work undertaken in
their organization. Almost two-thirds reported this had been the case (65%). The remainder
stated that the conference had not influenced the organization’s work (21%), or they did not
know (10%)16. Twenty-seven interviewees described a total of 29 changes (see Table 3.3).

                          Table 3.3: Changes made at the organizational level
                                                                             % respondents
                                             Change
                                                                              who identified
                                                                             change (n=27)*

                          Changed direction or focus                               56

                          New collaboration/network/partnership                    15

                          New programme/initiative                                 15

                          Wider uptake of information                              11

                          Other                                                    5

                            *Total exceeds 100 as more than one change could be identified



16
     Three people did not respond to the question

                                                                                                   37
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
The difference most frequently identified was a change in direction or focus of the
organization’s HIV work. The following quotations exemplify this type of change:

             We strengthened our youth programmes (Policy/administrator, Malawi).

             Our training system was re-oriented to focus more on prevention. We also
             reviewed the support given to breastfeeding mothers (Researcher, Togo)

             As well as involving more children in our programmes, we changed our
             framework to ensure the rights of children were observed
             (Policy/administrator, Zimbabwe).


Other, less frequently identified, changes included:
   Establishment of a new collaboration, partnership or network as a result of contacts made at
   the conference;
   Development of a new programme or initiative;
   Wider dissemination of information within and outside organization.
The following quotes describe these types of changes:

             We moved from working as an individual organization to working as a team with
             other organizations (Policy/administrator, Nigeria).

             We started a research project on PMTCT (Researcher, Kenya).

             We disseminated information collected at ICASA – especially M & E practices –
             within the organization and with other organizations and partners (Policy
             administrator, Africa).




3.5     Impact of ICASA 2005 at the country level

Interviewees were asked if ICASA 2005 had influenced work in HIV or STIs in their country. Just
under two-thirdsreported that the conference had an influence at the country level (63%). The
remainder indicated that there had not been any influence (15%) or they did not know (22%).

Twenty-seven people described a total of 31 effects of ICASA 2005 at the country level. The most
frequently reported effects fell into three main categories:
• Influence on practice, protocols, guidelines or policy;
• Increase in commitment to HIV/AIDS, especially by government;
• Raising of the profile of HIV in general, and issues faced by people living with HIV/AIDS in
   particular (see Table 3.4).

                                 Table 3.4: Changes at the country level

                                                                           % respondents
                                          Change
                                                                            who identified
                                                                           change (n=27)*

                       Influenced practice, guidelines or policy                 48

                       Increased commitment to HIV/AIDS                          33

                       Raised profile of HIV and associated issues               33

                         *Total exceeds 100 as more than one change could be identified.


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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
The following quotes typify the types of changes described by interviewees:

             As a result of the conference, there was increased interest and enlistment
             of political will resulting in a change in discourse and allocation of 15% of
             national budget for health to HIV (Health worker, Nigeria).

             The Ministry in charge of HIV/AIDS organized a session immediately after
             ICASA to share the main findings and outcomes of those who had not
             attended. Thanks to advocacy efforts, the price of ARVs decreased and they
             are now free of charge in this country (Health worker, Ivory Coast)

             Following the conference, there was increased access to prevention and
             treatment, and greater involvement of religious and community groups
             (Clinician, Burkina Faso)

             After the conference there was a policy change regarding PMTCT, resulting
             in a better regimen for women. It was also decided to extend treatment to
             partners of infected mothers (Funder, Southern Africa region).



3.6     The role of ICASA 2005 role in partnership- and network-building

Interviewees were asked if they had developed new partnerships or networks, or strengthened
existing ones, as a result of attending ICASA 2005. A large proportion of respondents (89%, n=41)
provided a variety of examples of new and/or strengthened relationships at individual,
organizational, national and global levels.

The following quotes exemplify the types of relationships described:

             I developed links with new participant MSM groups (Health worker, South
             Africa)

             After the conference we worked more closely with UNICEF and UNFPA, both of
             which provide funding for programmes (Policy/administrator, Zimbabwe).

             I joined an association for women living with HIV (Health worker, Nigeria)




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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
                  4.       KEY FINDINGS, DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS

 4.1         Introduction

 The evaluation of the 15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA 2008) was
 framed by three objectives:

i.          To review key conference processes and activities to guide the planning of future
            conferences;
ii.         To consider the immediate and short-term impact of ICASA 2008 on participants;
iii.        To investigate the longer-term impact of ICASA 2005 at the individual,
            organizational and country levels.

 Detailed findings about the ICASA 2008 programme, logistics and organization, as well as
 immediate and short-term conference impact are presented in Section 2. Detailed findings
 about the longer-term impact of ICASA 2005 are presented in Section 3. Broad findings are
 discussed in this section. Where available, comparative evaluative data from the ICASA
 2005 evaluation is presented17.



 4.1.1 Limitations of the evaluation

 ICASA 2008
 An exact response rate for the online survey cannot be calculated because it is not known
 how many people who were sent a survey had actually attended ICASA 2008. The
 proportion of conference participants who completed a survey also cannot be determined
 exactly because the final conference attendance figure is an estimate. However, there
 were approximately 6,500 participants of whom 1,161 completed a survey; therefore it
 can be concluded that at least 18% of participants provided evaluative feedback about the
 conference.

 It is not known if survey respondents were representative of all conference participants
 because detailed demographic information was not collected at registration. With respect
 to country, survey respondents were representative of paid, regular delegates, with the
 exception of participants from South Africa, who were under-represented in the survey
 sample. The views of participants who do not have ready or reliable internet access may
 also be under-represented because the survey was only offered online.




 17
       K.I.T. op. cit.
       Approximately 400 participants completed a paper survey on-site at ICASA 2005. Caution must be
       exercised when comparing findings, however, because of the smaller sample size, wording differences in
       questions and limited reporting of detailed results.

                                                                                                           40
 15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
The survey gathered much useful quantitative data about different aspects of ICASA 2008.
It was not possible to ask many open-ended questions as the resources were not available
to effectively analyze a large amount of qualitative information.

ICASA 2005
It was not possible to determine if the 46 people who were interviewed about ICASA 2005
were representative of all conference participants because demographic information was
not collected at registration. It was also not possible to validate the changes described by
interviewees as these had taken place over a three-year period since ICASA 2005.

Notwithstanding the above limitations, the evaluation has provided valuable information
to guide future planning and to help assess the worth of the International Conference of
AIDS and STIs in Africa. Looking to future ICASA, it is important to collect detailed
demographic information from participants at registration to allow monitoring over time.
It is also timely to review the benefits and limitations of using an online survey to collect
evaluative feedback from participants. A paper survey widely distributed on the last day
of the conference would address the issue of non-delivery of emails, ensure that the
survey only went to people attending the conference, and may result in a more
representative sample.




 4.2 Key findings and discussion

4.2.1 ICASA 2008

Attendance
1.       ICASA 2008 attracted approximately 6,5s00 participants, 3,721 of whom were
         regular, paid delegates representing 86 countries.

         The attendance figure reflected a decrease in numbers from ICASA 2005 which
         attracted approximately 8,200 participants. Like ICASA 2005, where the largest
         proportion of participants came from the host country (Nigeria), the largest
         proportion of participants at ICASA 2008 came from Senegal. However, unlike ICASA
         2005, where more than half the participants came from Nigeria (60%), ICASA 2008
         attracted participants from many countries; just under one fifth came from Senegal
         (17%)18.

2.       Networking opportunities was the most frequently given reason for attending ICASA
         2008 (45% of survey respondents), followed by programme content (36%).

         Although caution must be exercised when comparing this finding with the ICASA
         2005 Evaluation as the option categories were slightly different, there appears to be
         a marked shift from ICASA 2005, where the largest proportion of survey respondents


18
     K.I.T. op. cit., p.27.

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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
         identified ‘skills workshop’ as their main reason for attending the conference
         (25%)19. Skills-building was the fourth most frequently selected reason for attending
         ICASA 2008.

3.       The most frequently cited source of information about the ICASA 2008 was a
         recommendation from a colleague/friend (identified by 27% respondents).

          This finding underscores the important role played by professional and friendship
          networks in raising awareness of the conference, and a possibly expanded role for
          the Society of AIDS in Africa in promoting future conference.

Impact
4.        A large majority of survey respondents considered ICASA 2008 ‘successful’ or ‘very
          successful’ in facilitating the exchange of information about the epidemic in Africa (84%).
          At least two-thirds deemed the conference to have been ‘successful’ or ‘very successful’
          in strengthening the Society on AIDS in Africa for involvement in future conferences (71%);
          cultivating synergy between science, community and leadership to increase coherence in
          AIDS programmes (69%); creating an atmosphere conducive to evaluating the response to
          the epidemic (68%); and bringing together decision-makers to lead and promote universal
          access (68%).

          Although 71% of respondents considered ICASA 2008 had strengthened the Society on AIDS
          in Africa for involvement in future conferences, only a very small proportion of
          respondents reported they were members of the Society (9%).

5.       Virtually all survey respondents benefited professionally from attending the conference
         (99%); with 72% identifying three or more benefits gained. New contacts and opportunities
         for partnership and collaboration was the most frequently identified benefit (63%),
         followed by improved understanding of the epidemic in Africa (63%) and a renewed sense
         of purpose (51%).

          There was a high level of congruence between the most frequently identified reason for
          attending ICASA 2008 (networking opportunities) and the main benefit gained (new
          contacts and opportunities for partnership and collaboration) It was also evident that the
          conference offered participants opportunities for renewal and support in addition to
          professional development

6.       Most survey respondents anticipated undertaking at least one activity using benefits gained
         at ICASA 2008 (94%), with a large majority anticipating undertaking three or more (81%).
         Sharing information with colleagues was the activity most frequently identified (by 85% of
         respondents); however, more than half the respondents also planned to follow-up new
         contacts, strengthen advocacy or policy work, develop a new partnership or collaboration
         and apply new insights to prevention programmes.




19
     K.I.T. op. cit.p.55.

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15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
         This finding underlines the important role of informal learning and information exchange at
         conferences and the extended reach of ICASA 2008 far beyond those who physically
         attended. It also reveals a high level of congruence between the most frequently identified
         reason for attending the conference, the main benefit gained, and two key anticipated
         post-conference activities (follow-up new contacts and develop a partnership/
         collaboration).

7.       Almost all survey respondents would recommend the International Conference on AIDS and
         STIs to a colleague (93%) and approximately three-quarters would choose to attend the
         next conference (77%).

         A comparison of this finding with the equivalent finding in the ICASA 2005 evaluation shows
         that a larger proportion of respondents who attended ICASA 2008 planned to attend the
         next ICASA (77% versus 62%)20.

Programme
8.       The vast majority of survey respondents ‘agreed’ or ‘strongly agreed’ that their
         main track of interest had addressed current research questions and issues (92%),
         and examined how research can inform policy and programmes (89%). At least 75%
         of respondents rated the overall range of topics covered, usefulness of information
         presented and quality of speakers ‘good’ or ‘excellent’. The overall quality of
         sessions received a slightly lower rating (rated ‘good’ or excellent’ by 69%) and the
         quality of discussion and debate received the lowest rating (rated ‘good’ or
         ‘excellent’ by 60%).

9.       Plenary sessions (55%), parallel/special sessions (41%) and skills building workshops
         (33%) were deemed the most useful types of sessions (identified by 55%, 41% and
         33% of respondent, respectively). Poster viewing was deemed the least useful type
         of session (selected by 9%). Almost two-thirds of survey respondents would like more
         skills building sessions (61%).

          The finding that poster viewing was seen as a less valuable activity is of concern as
          posters offer an important, informal mechanism for discussion, dialogue and the
          sharing of best practice, as well as a structured opportunity to meet other
          professionals during the conference.

          Although quite a large majority of respondents would like more skills building
          workshops (61%), there was a decrease in the number of workshops offered at ICASA
          2008 compared to ICASA 2005 (33 versus approximately 47).

Organization
10. Pre-conference services received mixed ratings. Although at least 70% of
     respondents rated accessing the conference website, registering online and
     submitting an abstract ‘easy’ or ‘very easy’, only half the respondents rated paying


20
     K.I.T. op. cit. p.56.

                                                                                                  43
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
          registration and obtaining requested information ‘easy’ or ‘very easy’. Two-thirds of
          respondents rated booking accommodation ‘difficult’ or ‘very difficult’.

          There is a clear need to improve processes for booking accommodation, responding
          to participants’ queries and paying registration. Although it was not possible to
          compare these findings with findings from the ICASA 2005 participant survey due to
          differences in rating scales and the wording of questions, some issues relating to
          these areas were also highlighted in that evaluation.

11.       Aspects of on-site conference organization also received mixed ratings. While the
          PLHIV Lounge, conference venue and facilities and The Village were rated ‘good’ or
          ‘excellent’ by approximately 70% of respondents, approximately 50% of respondents
          rated on-site registration and badge and bag collection ‘poor’.

          On-site registration rated poorly at ICASA 2008. It also rated very poorly at ICASA
          2005, highlighting an ongoing need to address the types of registration issues
          identified by ICASA 2008 survey respondents21.

12.       Although a small sample, feedback from members of the International Steering
          Committee emphasised positive changes in the operations of the committee,
          implementation of the four principles guiding the conference, and programme
          building processes.



4.2.2 ICASA 2005

Follow-up interviews conducted three years after ICASA 2005 demonstrated that the conference
had a marked, positive impact on HIV work at the individual, organizational and country levels.

Individual impact: Most interviewees (89%) reported a benefit gained at the conference, and a
large majority (80%) reported that they had made a change in their practice as a result, most
frequently refining current work in the light of information gained or undertaking a new project.

Organizational impact: Just over two-thirds of interviewees (65%) reported that the conference
had directed or influenced the HIV work in their organization, most commonly resulting in a
change in direction or focus.

Country-level impact: A similar proportion of interviewees (63%) noted the conference had
influenced HIV work in their country, most frequently influencing current practice, guidelines or
policy.

In addition, the conference played an important role in facilitating new or strengthening existing
partnerships and networks.




21
     K.I.T. op. cit. p.5.

                                                                                                  44
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
4.3     Conclusions

The stated objectives of the 15th Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA 2008) were:

1.    To create an atmosphere conducive to information, exchange, experiences, and evaluation
      of the response to the epidemic in Africa.
2.    To aim for greater coherence in the design and implementation of AIDS programs by
      cultivating synergy among scientific, community, and leadership approaches.
3.    To heighten public awareness of the continuing impact of HIV/AIDS and STIs and the
      importance of international solidarity in the response.
4.    To promote universal access to prevention, care, and treatment of HIV/AIDS and STIs by
      reinforcing the engagement of leaders through concrete action that integrates decision-
      makers from the public and private sectors.
5.    To build an institutional memory by strengthening the SAA and follow-up to ICASA 2008.

As the evaluation findings were a reasonable reflection of participants’ views, it can be
concluded that there was strong support for ICASA 2008, and that the conference provided an
appropriate and sound mechanism for achieving these objectives.

The evaluation also highlighted the ongoing need for future conference programmes to
continue to address the challenges of achieving universal access, to facilitate the
translation of research into evidence-based policy and programmes, and to focus on the
needs of vulnerable and marginalized populations. In addition, some important but lower
level planning and organizational issues were illuminated which require attention.

The stated objectives of the 14th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa
(ICASA 2005) were:

1.    To analyse the dynamic of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Africa and, while focussing on
      the African family, discuss appropriate strategies for adequately responding to the
      epidemic;
2.    To provide a forum for critical analysis of various initiatives undertaken by major
      stakeholders to respond to HIV/AIDS in Africa and to discuss the extent to which
      these have impacted on the course of the epidemic in Africa; and
3.    To discuss the recent advances made in the areas of basic and social sciences –
      vaccine and microbicide developments, ARV, prevention – and how they will impact
      on the quality of life of those infected and affected by the epidemic.

Three years after the conference, there was clear evidence that there had been a marked,
positive effect on the HIV work of a number of individuals, organizations and countries in these
areas.




                                                                                                   45
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
                                                                                              Appendix 1


                                              PARTICIPANT INTERVIEW: ICASA
                                                                       2005
Hello, I’m a member of the Conference Evaluation Team. I’m collecting feedback from people who
attended the
14th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa, held in Abuja, Nigeria in 2005. Did you attend
this conference? If no:    Thank and move on
                  If yes:  May I ask you a few questions – it will take about 5 minutes. You won’t be
                          identified, but the information collected will be used for reporting purposes.



1.      Thinking back, can you recall the most important things you gained from attending ICASA
        2005?
                 1   Yes                                                       2   No
                 1a. Please describe these                                     Go to Q2




2.      Did you do anything differently in your HIV or STI work as a result of attending ICASA 2005?
        ( … in other words, did the conference influence your work?)
                 1   Yes                                                       2   No
                 2a. Please describe this                                      2b. Was there a reason for
        this?




3.      Did ICASA 2005 direct or influence any of the work in HIV or STIs undertaken in your
        organisation?
                 1   Yes                                      2   No                    3   Don’t know
                 3a. If yes, please describe this




                                                                                                            46
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
4.       Outside your organisation, are you aware of ICASA 2005 having influenced any work in HIV or
         STs in your country?
                     1   Yes                                2   No                      3    Don’t know
                     5a. If yes, please describe




5.       As result of ICASA 2005, were any new partnerships or networks developed or existing ones
         strengthened among individuals and organisations at different levels (community, country,
         region)
                     1   Yes                                2   No                      3    Don’t know
                     5a. If yes, please explain




That’s the end of my questions except for some information about you …

6.      What is your gender?


7.      In which country do you mainly work?


8.      What is your main occupation?


9.      What type of organization are you mainly affiliated with/do you work in?


10.     How many years (full or part-time) have you worked in the HIV/AIDS or STI field?


11.     What is your main area of work?

             1       HIV/AIDS          2    STIs            3     HIV & STIs            4     another area

12.     Was ICASA 2005 your first conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa?

                 1     Yes             2   No



                                                   Thank you for participating in this interview. Enjoy the conference!




                                                                                                                    47
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
                                                                                        Appendix 2

                    Survey for ICASA 2008 Committee Members

Dear

As part of the evaluation of ICASA 2008, feedback is being sought from members of the
International Steering Committee about the Committee’s operations, and about overall conference
planning and programme-building.

Your opinion is important. Please take a few minutes to complete the questions below - it will take
less than five minutes.

The results will be used to assist future conference planning. Participation is voluntary and your
responses will be treated in confidence. The results will be analyzed by the independent
conference evaluator, Diana McConachy, and any identifying information will be removed before
responses are collated. By returning your completed survey you consent to the information
collected being used for reporting purposes. If you have any questions about the evaluation please
contact dmcconachy@people.net.au


To submit your response ...
1. First hit ‘Reply’ on this email message
2. Then type your response to each question below directly on the email.
3. When you have finished, hit ‘Send’ to return the email to the Conference Evaluator
4. Please reply no later than November 25, 2008.




The questions …

Operation of the International Steering Committee
1. Were the Committee’s mandate and tasks clear to you from the beginning? (Please select one
using ‘X’)
        Not clear
        Somewhat clear
        Very clear

2. Was the number of members sufficient for the Committee to work effectively? (Please select
one using ‘X’)
        Too few
        About right
        Too many

3. Was the number of meetings held (telephone and face-to-face) sufficient for the Committee to
   work effectively? (Please select one using ‘X’)
       Too few
       About right
       Too many
       Don’t know




                                                                                                  48
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
4. Was the support provided by the ICASA Secretariat sufficient for the Committee to work
   effectively? (Please select one using ‘X’)
       Too little
       About right
       Too much
       Don’t know

5. Were key stakeholders in the HIV/AIDS response in Africa represented on the Committee?
(Please select one using ‘X’)
        Not well
        Moderately well
        Very well
        Don’t know

6. Do you have any comments about how the operations of the International Steering Committee?
       No
       Yes (please briefly specify)


Principles guiding the conference
Four principles defined ICASA 2008: (i) transparency, (ii) integrity, (iii) 'metamorphosis’ in
organization and management and (iv) excellence. How would you rate the achievement of the
following principles so far?

7. Transparency in organizational processes (Please select one using ‘X’)
       Poor
       Fair
       Good
       Excellent
       Don’t know

8. Integrity and openness in relationships with key stakeholders (Please select one using ‘X’)
        Poor
        Fair
        Good
        Excellent
        Don’t know

9. Creation of a new management policy and ‘institutional memory’ to guide future ICASA
(Please select one using ‘X’)
        Poor
        Fair
        Good
        Excellent
        Don’t know

10. Raising the conference profile to position ICASA as a high quality event which strives for
    excellence (Please select one using ‘X’)
        Poor
        Fair
        Good
        Excellent
        Don’t know




                                                                                                 49
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
11. Do you have any comments about the achievement of the ICASA 2008 principles?
       No
       Yes (please briefly specify)


Conference planning and programme building
The conference was framed by the theme, ‘Africa’s response: Face the Facts’, and five key
objectives. Please indicate your level of agreement with the following statements:

12. The conference theme guided conference planning and programme-building (Please select
one using ‘X’)
        Strongly disagree
        Disagree
        Agree
        Strongly agree
        Don’t know

13. The process for building the conference programme worked well (Please select one using ‘X’)
       Strongly disagree
       Disagree
       Agree
       Strongly agree
       Don’t know

14. The conference theme ‘Africa’s response: Face the Facts’ was adequately addressed in the
    conference programme (Please select one using ‘X’)
        Strongly disagree
        Disagree
        Agree
        Strongly agree
        Don’t know

15. Do you have any comments about overall conference planning or programme building?
       No
       Yes (please briefly specify)

Thank you for taking the time to answer the questions

Now hit 'Send' to return the email to the Conference Evaluator




                                                                                               50
15th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa: Evaluation Report
                                                                          Appendix 3




Welcome to the ICASA 2008 Evaluation Survey.
To complete the survey in English, please click below:

  ENGLISH



Bienvenue sur le site du questionnaire d'évaluation de ICASA 2008.
Pour remplir le questionnaire en français, veuillez cliquer ci-dessous:

  FRANÇAIS
ICASA 2008 Evaluation: Participant Survey

Thank you for participating in this survey. The information you provide will help to assess the impact of ICASA
2008 and to guide planning for the next conference.

The survey is being sent to all participants and findings will be analyzed by the conference evaluator. The final
evaluation report will be posted on the conference website.

By returning your completed survey you consent to the information being used for reporting purposes. If you
have any questions about the evaluation or this survey please contact ICASAevaluation@e-valuate-it.com

Please only begin this survey if you were a delegate attending ICASA 2008. Otherwise, please click "I did not
attend ICASA 2008" or "I attended ICASA 2008 but not as a Delegate" (for example, if you were an Exhibitor) to
exit the survey. You will not receive further reminder emails.


   Begin survey
      I did not attend ICASA 2008                I attended ICASA 2008 but not as a Delegate


Powered by E-valuate-IT
                                                                   Questions marked (*) are mandatory |   GO TO END »

Completing the survey ...
Please stay connected to the internet while you complete the questions below. If you need to leave the survey
part-way through, you can save a draft at the bottom of the page and return later to complete the survey. If
you close the survey window without saving a draft your responses will not be recorded.

Conference Attendance

1.   Which International Conferences on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA) have you attended?
     Select all that apply

            15th ICASA (Dakar, 2008)
            14th ICASA (Abuja, 2005)
            13th ICASA (Nairobi, 2003)
            12th ICASA (Ouagadougou, 2001)
            An ICASA not listed above


2.   Did you attend the XVII International AIDS Conference
     (AIDS 2008) in Mexico City?

            no
            yes


3.   How did you first learn about ICASA 2008 (Dakar)?
     Select one

            Conference invitation programme/brochure
            Attended a previous ICASA/aware of conference schedule
            Recommended by a colleague/friend
            At a workshop/other conference
            Through the internet/email
            Not sure
            Other (please specify)




4.   What were the two main factors in your decision to attend ICASA 2008?
     Select up to two

            Programme content
            Networking opportunities
            Skills-building opportunities
            Presenting a paper or poster
            Organizing a satellite, skills-building workshop or exhibition
            Recipient of a scholarship or grant
            Geographic location (Dakar, Senegal)
            Other (please specify)
5.    Did you attend the conference orientation session held the day before the conference began (2nd
      December)?

             no (go to Question 7)
             yes


6.    How useful was the orientation session for you?

             not useful
             somewhat useful
             useful
             very useful


Conference Programme

7.    What was your main track of interest at ICASA 2008 (the track in which you attended most sessions)?
      Select one

             Track A: Biology and Pathogenesis of HIV
             Track B: Clinical Research, Treatment and Care
             Track C: Epidemiology, Prevention and Prevention Research
             Track D: Social and Behavioural Sciences
             Track E: Policy and Health Economics
             I had no main track of interest (go to Question 10)



Thinking about your main track of interest, please indicate your level of agreement with the following
statements
                                                        strongly                          strongly       don't
                                                                   disagree    agree
                                                        disagree                           agree         know

8.    The track addressed current research
      questions and issues
9.    The track examined how research can
      inform policy and programmes



10.   Which two types of sessions or activities did you find the most useful at ICASA 2008?
      Select up to two

             Plenary sessions
             Parallel/special sessions
             Poster viewing
             Skill-building workshops
             Satellite meetings
             Informal networking
             The Village
             Other (please specify)
Would you change the mix of the programme for the next conference?
                                                    less of these                        more of these
                                                                       no change                                no opinion
                                                      sessions                             sessions

11.   Plenary sessions

12.   Parallel/special sessions
13.   Poster viewing sessions

14.   Skill-building workshops
15.   Satellite meetings




Thinking about the overall conference programme, how would you rate the following?
                                                             poor            fair                good            excellent

16.   Quality of sessions
17.   Quality of speakers

18.   Quality of chairpersons and moderators
19.   Quality of discussion and debate
20.   Range of topics covered
21.   Usefulness to you of information presented




22.   Do you have any additional comments about the conference programme?

             no
             yes (please briefly specify)

      Comments




Conference Impact


Overall, how successful was the conference in achieving its key objectives?
                                                           not       somewhat                         very           don't
                                                                                    successful
                                                        successful   successful                    successful        know

23.   To facilitate the exchange of information
      and experience about the epidemic in
      Africa
24.   To create an atmosphere conducive to
      evaluating the response to the epidemic in
      Africa
25.   To bring together decision-makers from the
      public and private sectors to lead and
      promote universal access to prevention,
      care and treatment of HIV/AIDS and STIs
26.   To cultivate synergy between science,
      community and leadership to increase
      coherence in the design and
      implementation of AIDS programmes
27.   To strengthen the Society on AIDS in Africa
      (SAA) for involvement in future
      conferences
28.   What are the main benefits you gained from attending ICASA 2008?
      Select all that apply

             Improved understanding of the epidemic in Africa
             New insights into the science of HIV and STIs
             New insights into the prevention of HIV and STIs
             New insights into the treatment and care of
             HIV and STIs
             New contacts and opportunities for partnership and collaboration
             Affirmation of current research or practice
             A renewed sense of purpose
             I did not gain anything from the conference (go to Question 30)
             Other (please specify)




29.   How will you use what you gained at ICASA 2008?
      Select all that apply

             Share information with colleagues/peers
             Apply new insights to research
             Apply new insights to clinical practice
             Apply new insights to prevention programmes
             Apply new insights to care and support programmes
             Strengthen advocacy or policy work
             Follow-up new contacts
             Develop a new partnership/collaboration
             Initiate a new project/activity/research
             I am unsure
             I will not do anything different
             Other (please specify)




Conference Organization


Prior to the conference, how easy it was for you to
                                                    very       somewhat     somewhat   very    don't know/
                                                   difficult    difficult     easy     easy   not applicable

30.   Access the conference website
31.   Register online
32.   Pay conference registration
33.   Submit an abstract
34.   Book accommodation

35.   Obtain requested information
Please rate the following aspects of conference organization
                                                                                                    don't know/
                                                          poor     fair       good     excellent
                                                                                                   not applicable

36.   Conference website

37.   Pre-conference information
38.   On-site registration

39.   Badge and bag collection
40.   Conference materials (e.g., programme,
      abstract book)
41.   Opening ceremony
42.   Time-tabling of sessions

43.   Poster organization/display
44.   Exhibition areas/displays

45.   The Village
46.   PLHIV Lounge
47.   Conference venue and facilities



48.   Did you use the conference interpretation service
      Select one

             yes - English into French
             yes - French into English
             no (go to Question 50)


49.   How would you rate overall quality of the interpretation service you used?
      Select one

             poor
             fair
             good
             excellent


50.   Do you have any additional comments about the organization of the conference ?

             no
             yes (please briefly specify)

      Comments




51.   Would you recommend ICASA to a colleague or peer?

             no
             yes
52.   Based on your experience of ICASA 2008, would you choose to attend the next conference?
      Select one

             yes
             unsure
             no (please briefly explain why)




53.   Do you have any final comments about ICASA 2008?

             no
             yes (please briefly specify)




Finally, some brief details about you

The following questions are mandatory and are included to help us analyse the survey results.

54. * What is your gender?

             Male
             Female
             Transgender


55. * What is your age?

             Under 20 years
             20 to 25
             26 to 40
             41 to 60
             Over 60 years


56. * What is your main occupation or profession?
      Select one

             Clinician/physician
             Other health care worker/social services provider
             Researcher
             Educator/trainer
             Policy/administrator
             Advocate/activist
             Student
             Media representative
             Pharmaceutical representative/manufacturer
             Funder
             Lawyer
             Volunteer
             Other (please specify)
57. * How would you best describe the main organization you are affiliated with or work in?
      Select one

              Hospital/clinic
              Academia (e.g. university, research institute)
              Government
              Intergovernmental organization (e.g. UN, WHO)
              Large non-government organization
              Grass-roots community-based organization
              PLHIV group/network/organization
              Faith-based organization
              Charitable foundation
              Trade Union
              Cooperative
              Pharmaceutical company
              Private company (other than pharmaceutical)
              Media organization
              Self employed/consultant
              Other (please specify)




58. * What is your main area of work or activity?

              HIV/AIDS
              STIs
              HIV/AIDS and STIs
              Other


59. * How many years (part-time or full-time) have you have worked in HIV/AIDS and/or STI field?

              2 years or less
              3 to 5
              6 to 10
              11 to 15
              16 to 20
              More than 20 years


60. * Are you a member of the Society on AIDS in Africa (SAA)?
      Select one

              no
              yes
              don't know


61. * What is your country of origin?
      Select one

           -- Please Select --

      If other please specify
62. * What is your main country of work?
      Select one

          -- Please Select --

      If other please specify




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