Nomination and Selection Process for the Wu Tsai Neurosciences Seminar Series

How are speakers chosen for this series?

The Wu Tsai Neurosciences Seminar Series is shaped by our vibrant community. Our speakers are selected from a pool of researchers nominated by our community members. Each year, the Seminar Selection Committee reviews these nominations and selects speakers based on the level of community interest and other key factors.  This community-driven approach ensures that our series remains relevant, engaging, and reflective of the diverse interests within our community.

Read on to learn more about nominations and the selection process. Make sure you thoroughly read all of the instructions before submitting nominations through our online portal via the button below.

 Submit Nominations

Community-Driven Excellence

The Wu Tsai Neuro Seminar Series is consistently relevant and impactful because the speakers are chosen by members like you!

The Nomination Process

General Timeline:

  • Early-Mid Fall Quarter: Call for nominations for the next academic year’s seminar series.
  • Late Fall Quarter: Selection Committee reviews nominations, selects final speakers and potential hosts.
  • Late Fall to Early Winter Quarter: Speakers and hosts are invited.
Image of a hand dropping a vote into a box, text that reads: "Speakers are selected from your nominations."

Instructions for Nominating Speakers: 

Community members may submit nominations for researchers that they are interested in inviting as speakers in the series. Once nominations open (announced via our mailing lists), community members can submit unlimited nominations. Don’t be shy! The more a speaker is nominated, the more our Seminar Selection Committee can see that our community is particularly invested in that speaker. 

Submitting Nominations: Dozens of nominations are submitted each year, and the Selection Committee relies heavily on the information submitted by the nominators when considering potential speakers. Therefore, it’s best to enter as much information as possible while being as accurate as possible. Submissions will be most efficient if you have all of the following ready for each nominee:

  • Basic Info: Seminar speaker’s name, position title, institution, email address, and lab (or faculty/personal) website.
  • Content Notes: Info regarding the likely topic and general theme of neuroscience (neurobiology, imaging, engineering, etc.). Links to recorded talks (such as TED Talks or other seminars found online) are appreciated.
  • Speaker Notes: A brief statement of how the personal experience, perspectives and/or scientific expertise of the speaker may enhance the diversity of the seminar series.

Diversity and Inclusion: Wu Tsai Neuro is dedicated to creating a seminar series with speakers who can share a wide array of perspectives and scientific expertise with our diverse community. Speakers from all faculty career stages will be considered, and we encourage you to nominate speakers from groups that have been historically marginalized in science. 

As you consider who you might want to nominate, you may wish to browse the list of external resources compiled by the Society for Neurosciences to browse researchers from diverse backgrounds.

SfN's List of Diverse Speakers Resources  Learn more about our Institute and diversity, equity, and inclusion


Hosting a Speaker

Hosts are selected from the list of nominators of each speaker. If you are interested in hosting a speaker, you are encouraged to submit nominations for any speaker you may wish to host. However, submitting a nomination does not automatically mean you will be required to host. 

Image of a pen checking off boxes

The Selection Process

Speakers nominated by our community are chosen based on a variety of criteria, including:

  • Number of nominations and/or potential for broad appeal
  • Representation of a wide variety of research areas
  • The diversity of researchers in neuroscience
  • The recent history of speakers at Stanford

Submitted nominations are compiled, generating a list of potential speakers ranked by number of nominations. Guided by a thoughtfully designed evaluation rubric (that aims to balance ratings between content, presentation, and representation factors), the Seminar Series Committee reviews all nominations and each member casts votes for their preferred speakers. Votes are tallied, and a ranked list of all nominees is discussed at the committee meeting. 

The committee consists of faculty members from various departments within the School of Medicine, School of Engineering, and School of Humanities and Sciences. 

Submit Nominations

Ready to start nominating speakers? Nominations may be submitted through our online seminar series portal. 

Note: When nominations are open, there will be a button in the portal that leads to the nomination form. Whenever the nomination cycle is closed, the option will not appear on the site. The call for nominations will be announced via our mailing lists.