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Update on Congress / McGill From the CPA Executive May 21, 2024

Update on Congress / McGill  From the CPA Executive  May 21, 2024

Dear CPA members and prospective conference participants,

It is with profound regret that we are announcing that most of the CPA 2024 conference, scheduled for McGill campus June 18-21, is pivoting to online, onto the Congress online platform. This is devastating to the CPA, which has had only one in-person conference since 2019. However, we have spent the past two weeks discussing, consulting, brainstorming, and modelling various options for how to deal with the challenging situation on McGill campus, and we have come to the unanimous conclusion that this is our only viable option, all things considered.

The biggest obstacle is the strike by AMPL (the Association of McGill Law Professors). With the support of CAUT and other organizations, AMPL is planning to picket all Congress events, and has asked all member organizations to boycott McGill campus in solidarity ( It is hard to give firm statistics right now, as this is still evolving, but we can confidently report that many small organizations are moving their conferences to another location, and many larger organizations are moving online. In our case, a clear majority of the over 120 respondents to our May 13 CPA poll said that they would not cross a CAUT-backed picket line to attend the conference.

The default option for all sessions is that the schedule remains in place, but they are moved from in-person to online, via the Congress online platform. We are still planning to hold a limited number of sessions in-person (in Montreal, but not on McGill campus), with an online option (so: hybrid). These include the three Invited Plenary sessions, the CJP Distinguished Lecture, and the CPA Presidential Address. Specific details as to the location of these events will be forthcoming in due course – we are reaching out to the other Montreal Philosophy departments for help with space to congregate, and we plan to organize some informal social reception-type events. (The AGM will be pushed back one week and held online, on Wednesday June 27 at noon eastern.)

The Federation’s position is that no refunds of Congress fees are possible, at this stage, due to costs already incurred. Details about their policy can be found here:

We are asking any prospective attendees who have already spent money on travel plans, for which they are now in jeopardy of missing out on refunds or reimbursements, to identify themselves (to We are determined not to leave you unsupported, but are at present not in a position to announce any firm plans or policies.

For those of you who are participating in our conference (presenters/chairs/commentators/panelists), further logistical information will be shared with you over the next few days. In the interim, if you have any immediate concerns that we should be aware of, please direct them to


Arthur Sullivan

2023-24 President, Canadian Philosophical Association