The AIDS 2020 Workshop Programme is aimed at increasing the capacity of delegates to implement and advocate for effective, evidence-based HIV and AIDS policies and interventions in their respective communities and countries. AIDS 2020 will offer about 30* high-quality, targeted workshops that will promote and enhance opportunities for knowledge transfer, skills development and collaborative learning.

Workshops will be selected from proposals submitted by the public through the AIDS 2020 website. Each proposal will be assessed by at least two reviewers; the AIDS 2020 Workshop Working Group (WWG) will steer the criteria for workshop assessment and final workshop selection. The WWG will be composed of members selected from the AIDS 2020 programme committees and the Conference Coordinating Committee.

Workshops have a limited participant capacity. Seating will be granted on a first-come, first-seated basis. Participants are encouraged to arrive 15-20 minutes prior to the start time.

*Workshop numbers mentioned here are subject to change.

Workshops differ from symposia because they:

  • Promote and enhance opportunities for knowledge transfer, skills development and collaborative learning
  • Are held in smaller rooms, which facilitates greater audience participation
  • Use interactive tools to form a more dynamic and collaborative experience, including the following examples:
    1. Case studies
    2. Multiple perspectives (point/counter)
    3. Panel with Q&A (moderated)
    4. Role play
    5. Storytelling/testimonials
    6. Formal debate
    7. Keynote address, followed by discussion
    8. Multi-media, film, video presentation
    9. Open forum, open space, town-hall meeting
    10. Presentation roundtable with rebuttal
    11. Group work
  • Are targeted at specific audiences
  • Are 90 or 150 minutes in duration
  • Have at least three facilitators.

The following is a checklist of things to consider when brainstorming workshop topics that will help ensure a balanced, high-quality programme that reflects committee visions:

  • Does this workshop reflect the AIDS 2020 objectives?
  • Does this workshop reflect the main ideas communicated in the committee’s vision?
  • Is the topic current and relevant? Is it different from previous conferences?
  • Does the workshop present a unique perspective that is not likely to emerge from the other committee?
  • Does this workshop cover or target key populations?
  • Is the focus of the workshop on knowledge transfer, skills development and collaborative learning?
  • Does the workshop have two or more forms of audience participation and/or interaction?
  • Is the session inclusive and/or applicable to multiple regions?
  • Does the facilitator have previous experience in public speaking and workshop facilitation?

Workshop focus areas

AIDS 2020 workshops are grouped into three areas: community, leadership and science. These areas cover a range of content and teach specific skills that can be applied within the workplace or in life settings. The main purpose of the grouping is to guide delegates to workshops that will best correspond to their needs.


Experience shows that community involvement is an essential part of the response to combat the HIV epidemic. This series of workshops will showcase effective community empowerment programmes that are strengthening public health outcomes in HIV treatment, prevention, care and support. These workshops will emphasize the importance of building skills and capacity in relation to peer-driven programmes and services that are run “by and for” people living with HIV and key populations.

Participating in these workshops will enable delegates to broaden their knowledge and skills in mobilizing key populations and local communities to implement effective and sustainable programmes. By sharing the successes of global community responses to HIV, workshops will emphasize the importance of building partnerships and strengthening networks between civil society, policy makers and health professionals.


Workshops provide a platform for new and current leaders to learn innovative skills, which are critical for ensuring an effective response to the HIV epidemic. Delegates will develop and enhance their ability to assess and measure commitments and actions of leaders in their own communities.

The intention of these sessions is to provide practical advice on best practice and to challenge individuals and organizations to consider ways in which they go about developing leadership skills and accountability processes. The aim is to understand such practices and examine what outcomes are possible for an effective, transparent and coordinated HIV response.


Workshops enhance skills development and encourage collaborative learning around the latest scientific research, emerging technologies and breakthroughs in policy and programme in order to inform and guide the global response to the HIV epidemic.

Workshops in this category will serve to:

  1. Accelerate the scaling up of evidence-informed and combined approaches to HIV care, treatment and prevention
  2. Highlight excellence in biomedical, epidemiological, behavioural, social, economic, political and operational research, as well as in multidisciplinary science
  3. Discuss the impact of the HIV response on health and social systems, including the potential for effective HIV programmes to transform the response for today and for generations to come.

Workshop levels

Workshops are classified into three levels that require varying degrees of experience and expertise from their target audiences. These levels have been created for the opportunity to share knowledge and skills to the highest possible capacity and to maximize the potential of the overall conference platform.

 The three workshop levels are:

  1. Foundation level – For learners new to a career in HIV and health. These workshops are intended to build strong foundation skills and knowledge.
  2. Intermediate level – For mid-career learners who have a strong foundation and are looking to further advance their professional expertise and become more effective team leaders. These workshops offer a robust selection of topics that will help delegates specialize their focus, explore new areas and opportunities or expand their skills to the next level of professional development.
  3. Advanced level – For those who have been working in HIV and health for years and are looking for new, fresh approaches to fighting HIV and AIDS and delivering on high-stakes projects. These workshops should allow delegates to build and nurture their talent while increasing their own influence and marketability and strengthen engagement with key experts at leading global health organizations.


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