39th IEEE Symposium on
Security and Privacy

Issues to discuss at the IEEE Security & Privacy TC Business Meeting

Dear IEEE TCSP members and S&P Symposium attendees,

We're looking forward to seeing many of you at "Oakland" in San Francisco, come Monday.

We are reaching out because at the IEEE TCSP Business Meeting, being held at the IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy (Tuesday 6:40pm PST, and open to all of you), we will discuss two key topics, and decide on their future directions:

  1. The Symposium's current monthly, ongoing submission process, its success, and its continuation.
  2. How the Symposium can scale to larger numbers of accepted papers.

The second of these topics is a critical, pressing issue, not only because of rising submission rates, but also because some elastic scalability is necessary to enable a flexible, fair process of reviewing and accepting papers (with or without revisions) on an ongoing basis throughout the year.

It seems likely that the Business Meeting will be deciding on some plan for scaling the number of papers at "Oakland." Therefore, please gather your thoughts on which options you would prefer, e.g., between the following options that will be discussed:

  1. Becoming a multi-track venue, like CCS, NDSS, and Usenix Security.
  2. Shortening talks or adding a day, to allow a small, fixed growth percentage.
  3. Adopt variable-length presentations and a long evening poster session (a la NIPS & ICLR).

Both of the first two options should be familiar, as they have been discussed before. However, because of contractual obligations re the venue, lengthening the Symposium or running multiple tracks may take several years to implement.

Shorter talks can be implemented quickly. Therefore, it's worth discussing option (C), which has recently allowed the machine-learning community to successfully scale to unprecedented submission numbers. Many of you appreciate how the Symposium provides a high-quality overview of the security and privacy research field in single track, and would like to preserve that "Oakland" characteristic. By having the Program Committee decide on paper's presentation lengths, and by moving the "hallway track" partly into an evening poster session that includes all accepted papers, option (C) can allow scaling that preserves this single-track character of "Oakland." However, while this option could also provide an active role for an in-person PC meeting, it will be unfamiliar to many in the community despite its success elsewhere (e.g., at NIPS,

On behalf of the IEEE Technical Committee on Security & Privacy

Sean Peisert and Ulfar Erlingsson (