There are varying styles of Chairing conference sessions and it is not the intent of these guidelines to remove the individual style of different Chairs, rather that, within each style minimum standards are maintained.
Before the conference
Chairs will be sent copies of all papers to be delivered in their session. These papers should be read and salient comments made during your summary at the end of the session.
Before the session (usually between sessions)
Meet all the speakers in your session and determine if any changes to the programme have to be made and ask for background information on the speakers. The Session convenor will help arrange these meetings.
There will be someone in charge of audio-visual equipment.
During the session
The session must be kept to time.
Each paper has been allocated 17-18 minutes. Authors are given 12 minutes to present a summary of their work. The remaining time is given over to discussion of the paper and/or general discussion of the topic. If the papers are similar you may wish to consider approaching the authors to have a joint general discussion at the end of the deliveries.
At the end of the session
Following the question time for the final speaker the Chair should summarise the session, the salient points and the relationship(s) between the papers (if they exist). At the end of the session all speakers (and co-authors) should be thanked for their presentations.