Virtual Conference

The Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference (GECCO 2021) is right around the corner, with tutorials and workshops starting as soon as July 10, 8:30am CEST! As this year’s conference will be virtual, please review the email below for important information regarding how to access the sessions. Note that all registrations include access to the full conference (i.e. also tutorials, workshops and other special events and sessions).

Full Program and Time Zone Information:

The program is available at three locations:

  1. In the conference booklet - Provides the agenda in CEST times only.
  2. Searchable online index, with filtering by day, track, location and more (public) - Displays the agenda in your local time.
  3. Day-by-day agenda with filtering (accessible only after logging into Whova) - Displays the agenda in your local time.

Conference access details

GECCO’21 will take place in two online platforms:

  • Whova: opens today.
    • All live talks (sessions, keynotes, tutorials, workshops and other events involving oral presentations) will be streamed on Whova using Zoom.
  • Gather: opens on July 8.
    • Meant mostly for socializing, coffee breaks, and poster sessions.
    • Features virtual lecture rooms. Entering a lecture room and joining a session/talk will move you to the session's page in Whova (which will require authorization in Whova).

Details on the access of both platforms are given below.

Whova access details

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For feature details, visit Whova
  • Our Whova site is already online!
    • As you have already registered, you should soon receive an automated email notification from Whova about the opening of GECCO’21.
  • Whova can be accessed with a web browser (Chrome recommended) or using a mobile app from https://whova.com/portal/gecco_202107/
  • To access GECCO’21 using Whova, you must use a Whova account with the same email address as the one you used to register.
  • If you already have a Whova account that uses the same email address as the one used for conference registration, you should already be able to enter GECCO’21 in Whova. Otherwise:
    • If you don’t have a Whova account, follow these instructions to set one up: https://whova.com/portal/gecco_202107/
    • If you have a Whova account associated with a different email address, please follow these steps:
      • From the Whova mobile app, you can edit your email by clicking on your profile on the top-left corner, then 'My Contact Info & QR Code', and then 'Email'
  • Once you enter the GECCO’21 space in Whova, you should have full access to all available functionalities, i.e. agenda, list of attendees, messaging, sponsors, virtual meetups, and more. In particular,
    • The Whova agenda allows you to browse the schedule and access live sessions.
    • When entering a session, you’ll be given the choice of watching it in your browser or using the standalone Zoom application. In our experience the latter tends to work better (and allows changing background, while the former does not).
    • To ask questions and interact with the speakers, use the Whova chat associated with a given session (not subsession). The Zoom chats are intentionally disabled. In regular sessions, you can use your mic too, but please adhere to the guidance of the session chair.
    • Consult our Guide for attendees for more details and recommendations: https://gecco-2021.sigevo.org/Guide-for-Attendees
    • Please notice that the pre-recorded videos will become visible in Whova only shortly before talks.
  • See the Whova Attendee User Guide: https://whova.com/resources/how-to-guide/user-tutorial/
  • Use the ‘Ask Organizers Anything’ feature to inquiry us about problems, or preferably use the contact email address indicated in the GECCO 2021 Help section below.

Gather access details

  • Gather opens on July 8.
  • To access gather, simply
    • follow the link found in the email each registered participant received.
    • password: provided in email
    • Note: these credentials should not be shared with those who don’t attend GECCO’21.
  • Gather is organized as a 2D virtual space where you have an associated avatar that can interact with other attendees
    • Please customize your avatar (using Edit Character button) to make it informative to the other attendees, i.e. use your full first and last name in the ‘Name’ field.
    • If you are not familiar with Gather, we highly recommend visiting our Gather space prior to the conference and learn about the controls and features of this platform.
  • Gather allows you to access all sessions by following the dedicated Whova links available in the corresponding virtual session rooms.
    • Please familiarize yourself with the different Gather spaces.
  • The Poster sessions (I) and (II) will take place in Gather only.
    • The sessions are split into rooms Posters 1 and Posters 2 for technical reasons. These rooms are independent of each other and of the main conference space. In practice, this means that you will be asked to press the Enter key to switch between the independent spaces and that you will only be able to interact with the participants who are in the same space.
    • Poster rooms will open at the beginning of Poster Session (I) (Monday July 12, 16:00-18:00 CEST) and remain open continuously at least until the end of Poster Session (II), 9:00-10:20 CEST Tuesday. We ask each poster presenter to present in both sessions. The list of posters and maps for poster room 1 and poster room 2 are downloadable.
    • Presenters are encouraged to stand on the star next to their posters in order for participants to better identify them as presenters.
    • Each poster is identified by specific coordinates. The list of posters and their coordinates is available in each poster room.
    • The zoom level and viewport of the poster is controlled by each user independently and thus, two different users can see different parts of the poster. You can use the “visible click” tool to highlight points in your poster. This tool allows you to highlight a point in the poster by clicking on it. The audience will see those clicks.
  • If encountering problems in Gather, please visit the Help Desk located near the entrance, and
    • Talk to the producer/volunteer if s/he is available there, or
    • Read the instructions by approaching the paper icon and pressing ‘x’, or
    • Fill the inquiry form that appears after approaching the envelope icon and pressing ‘x’.

Voting for Best Paper Awards

  • Voting for the Best Paper Awards will be realized using the LimeSurvey system hosted by SIGEVO. On the morning of Monday July 12, each registered participant will receive a personalized email with a link to the voting page. Please be warned that such emails tend to be occasionally redirected to spam folders. The voting site will close on Wednesday at 9:00am CEST.

System Requirements to Access Virtual Platforms:

  • Web access:
    • Any state-of-the-art popular web browser, however, Chrome is recommended for best experience.
    • Zoom Application
  • Mobile access: Whova app, available on iOS and Android

Please make sure you’re running the latest version of your software.

Conference Proceedings

The conference main and companion volumes will be available in the ACM Digital Library and will be accessible for free through the SIGEVO website in the following link:

We have set up a backup server with the proceedings while ACM publishes the two volumes. You can access this backup server at:

Server: https://gecco2021.uma.es
Username: provided in email each registered participant received
Password: provided in email each registered participant received

GECCO 2021 Help

If you have any questions regarding the conference, please feel free to reach out to us by using information below:

  • Via email: 2021gecco at gmail.com
  • In Whova: Use the ‘Ask Organizers Anything’ feature (notice: questions are public, i.e. visible to all attendees)
  • In Gather: Approach the Help Desk (see above)
  • 1-888-526-1242 (Toll Free)
  • 1-303-530-4683 (International)

We look forward to seeing you virtually!

The GECCO 2021 Team
2021gecco at gmail.com
1-888-526-1242 (Toll Free)
1-303-530-4683 (International)