WMRC 2023

Call for Abstracts

Call for Abstracts for WMRC 2023 is Closed

The overall theme for WMRC 2023 is Towards sustainable maritime SAR – building on our history to secure our future.


  • Abstracts are accepted in English only
  • The maximum word limit for Abstract title is 50 (excluding spaces)
  • The maximum word limit for Abstract text is 300
  • No images or tables allowed
  • Abstracts submitted via email or paper are not accepted
  • There can be only 1 Presenting Author
  • There is no limit to the number of co-authors
  • There is no limit to the number of abstracts submitted by an Author
  • Submitting an abstract does not register you for WMRC 2023


  • ‘SAR operations today’
  • ‘Sharing SAR experience’
  • ‘The future sustainability of SAR’

A Congress Programme Working Group has agreed a number of sub-headings for each of the above track/topics, please see below.

Example of Sub-heading

The following examples are provided as guidance. These are subjects that the programme working group would like to see covered during the Congress, but the list is not exclusive. The working group will carefully consider other subjects proposed.
Several of the sub-headings will fit in more than one thread. This is to provide flexibility. The working group will decide where to place papers submitted as the programme is filled in.

‘SAR operations today’

  • Water safety and drowning prevention – the role of education in reducing the number and/or severity of maritime emergencies
  • SAR mission coordination – best practices and recent developments
  • SAR in the broader context – working with the wider maritime sector to plan for and manage complex incidents.
  • SAR in remote locations – how to conduct SAR operations when resources are few in number and/or have severely limited capability
  • SAR across boundaries – SAR organisations sometimes need to work in environments where the lifesaving imperative runs up against others

‘Sharing SAR lessons’

  • Improving inter-agency communications – why does the SAR community seem to find sharing lessons difficult, and what can be done about it?
  • Specific SAR case studies, with operational lessons identified
  • Supporting SAR development – how best to support governmental and non-governmental organisations, especially start-up organisations, in developing maritime SAR capability
  • Social media: helping or hurting? – how to manage social media input
  • Getting the message out – SAR, public safety and social media
  • Mental health awareness
  • Managing traumatic stress – post-traumatic stress among SAR responders and how organisations should be aware of and manage it
  • Working with medical services

‘The future of SAR’

The emphasis in this thread will be on future challenges and possible solutions. Subjects likely to be included would be:

  • Equality of opportunity for all in SAR – how can we promote diversity and inclusion in a SAR setting?
  • Greener SAR operations – what SAR organisations can do to reduce their own environmental footprint
  • Benefits and challenges of new technologies and innovation, including remotely-piloted aircraft and autonomous vessels, alternative fuels and propulsion methods
  • SAR software and simulation
  • The consequences of extreme weather events on planning and preparing SAR operations, including risk management and training.
  • Recruitment, retention, training and people management, including volunteers
  • Developing maritime SAR capacity locally, especially with and within indigenous communities
  • Financing what we do in a difficult economic climate – a focus on different funding models, predicted changes over time, new developments, key messages and innovative campaigning
  • New management strategies for not-for-profit organisations.
  • SAR challenges in a world of political turmoil
  • The impact of maritime SAR on the implementation of the UN sustainable Development Goals.


Authors / presenters must ensure that they, and the IMRF, have permission to use any copyrighted material, including images etc.
The IMRF will publish abstracts submitted as part of the Congress proceedings, online, in free downloadable pdf format. The IMRF may also seek the author’s permission to make other use of the material submitted. Copyright will remain with the author, who may refuse or limit permission to publish or otherwise use her or his material: the IMRF will rigorously respect any such limitation.


The Programme Working Groups will be reviewing each abstract and selecting Poster and Oral Presentations. They may also re-assign accepted presentations to one of the three threads as appropriate.

Frequently Asked Questions

When will I receive the Notification Letter?
Notification Letters will be sent in March 2023

I am having trouble submitting by abstract – what can I do?
Please email at wmrc2023-program@icsevents.com.

Can I edit my abstract after submission?
Once you have submitted your abstract, the system won’t allow you to make any further edits. You may, with the working group’s consent, make minor alterations to your abstract, after receiving your notification letter - up to 1 May 2023.  The IMRF reserves the right not to publish an amended document if any concerns it gives rise to cannot be resolved with the author.

Please view the PDF version of the Call for Abstracts here

Abstract Submission Deadline: 23:59 CET – 3 February 2023

If you have any questions regarding your submitted abstract or the abstract submission process, do not hesitate to reach out to wmrc2023-program@icsevents.com .