ECCA Application Guidelines

SLA Europe 2020 ECCA Application Guidelines

ECCA Application Details

The 2020 Early Career Conference Award (ECCA) has two places available, one of which will be sponsored by the Legal Division and the other by the SciTech Division. 

For students, the Award will also cover the cost of one-year SLA membership, including membership of the Europe Chapter and Legal Division or SciTech Division (if applicable).

Applicants are required to submit their entry via our application form, with their supporting documents uploaded.

COVID-19 Update

SLA Europe had previously placed this award on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic, with the deadline advertised in March.

For applicants who applied to this year’s award prior to March, you don’t need to re-do your application, unless you would like to (e.g. due to a change in role or circumstances). 

For applicants who applied prior to March and would still like to be considered, please contact the Early Careers and Awards Committee.

2020 ECCA Prize

The Award will allow winners to attend the 2020 virtual SLA Annual Conference (14-16 October for live sessions, with additional asynchronous education sessions). 

The Early Career Conference Award (ECCA) is worth about $4000. It covers the costs of the conference registration, hotel lodging, economy return airfare, meals, and appropriate incidental expenses.

Award winners will also be paired with a mentor from the sponsoring Division, as well as a mentor from SLA Europe. We will notify winner(s) of the relevant contact details for their mentors prior to attending the conference.

Eligibility criteria

ECCA applicants must be meet the following eligibility criteria noted below. Applicants should also note the ECCA Legal Division requirements which detail required participation at certain events during the SLA Conference.

Applicants must be:

  • a current member of SLA and the SLA Europe Community (or be willing to join if successful)
  • an information professional living and working in Europe
  • have less than five years experience or within their first 5 years of post-qualification
  • OR a student enrolled in a European Library and Information Science (LIS) programme (undergraduate or postgraduate) during the 2019-20 academic year
  • OR participant in a recognised LIS training position, such as graduate traineeships, or studentships/internships lasting not less than 1 year
  • first-time attendees at an SLA annual conference
  • able to communicate in written and spoken English
  • in possession of up-to-date travel documents required for entry into the USA (i.e. current passport, visa waiver, etc.)
  • interested in a career in special librarianship, preferably in the areas of one or more of the two Divisions co-sponsoring the Awards with SLA Europe

Application Deadline

All applications must be received no later than Wednesday 30th September 2020, 23:59 GMT.

ECCA Application Requirements

You will need 3 documents to apply for the 2020 Early Career Conference Award (ECCA):

  • a statement
  • current CV/resume
  • a letter of recommendation

All documents should be in English.  Application documents should demonstrate you meet the eligibility criteria for the award. Applicants should submit their documents using our application form and accepted formats include: doc, docx and pdf.


ECCA applicants are required to write a three part statement, with a total maximum of 1500 words.

Part One

Tell us why you chose to pursue a career in LIS and why you might want to pursue a career in the area of your chosen Division.

Part Two

Select two past conference sessions from the list below and tell us why you would choose to attend.  Discuss what takeaways you think you will get out of the sessions, and how you would share lessons learned with others.

  1. Killing Sacred Cows: Using Data to Evaluate and Manage Library Services (SLA 2019)
  2. What Next? Identifying Your Encore Career Choices with Lifestyle Preferences (SLA 2019)
  3. Practical Applications of AI in Law Firms (SLA 2019)
  4. Building the Emotionally Intelligent Workplace: Ways to Improve the Self, Others, and Overall (SLA 2019)
  5. Preparing for the Worst, Hoping for the Best: Disaster Planning 101 for Information Professionals (SLA 2017)

Part Three

Tell us what you anticipate getting out of the conference and travel experience of the ECCA bursary and what impact you think this award will have on you personally and/or professionally.

Current CV/Resume

ECCA applicants should include a copy of their current CV/resume with the following details:

  • your current postal
  • your email addresses
  • your current telephone/mobile number

Letter of recommendation

ECCA applicants should also include a letter a recommendation, which details why you would be a good candidate for this award.

The recommendation may come from your supervisor at work, or a professional colleague not at your own workplace, or, if you are a student, from a lecturer or faculty advisor from your course. We have some advice for referees and applicants in completing this particular section.

Benefits of receiving the Award

Previous ECCA award winners thoroughly enjoyed their experience of attending the SLA Conference and their ongoing participation in SLA.

Since the award’s inception, we have received various feedback on the benefits of applying for this award – we have included some of these points below:

  • Gaining a broadened perspective on career options by attending Conference programme events and meeting seasoned library and information professionals at the Conference
  • Learning about many products and services for the LIS market by visiting the stands of exhibitors at the Conference’s accompanying INFO-EXPO
  • Receiving professional recognition from SLA Europe members and the co-sponsoring SLA Divisions. They will also be introduced at the International Reception and the First Timers Reception, as well as at Division events
  • Gaining widespread visibility through international publicity disseminated by SLA, SLA Europe, the co-sponsoring SLA Divisions, and industry sponsors all introducing the ECCA winners to the information community
  • Being able to travel to North America and meet information professionals from all parts of the globe
  • Developing their professional profile and publicity-seeking skills by writing articles for SLA

ECCA Winner Requirements

Successfully ECCA winners are required to undertake certain duties and responsibilities as part of their award.

For the winner being sponsored by this year’s chosen Division, there will be further attendance and participation in certain sessions and events will be required as part of the award.

For 2020, this is the Legal Division and we have listed their requirements separately.

During the conference

During the SLA Conference, the winner(s) should attend the International Reception and the First Timers Reception.

After the conference

After the 2020 SLA Conference, the award winner(s) will be expected to write two short articles in English on what they learned at the Conference.

The first article, geared towards SLA Europe membership, will be published on the SLA Europe blog.

The second article will be published in the blog/newsletter of the SLA Division co-sponsoring them and geared to that readership.

The award winner(s) will also be given the opportunity to stay in touch with their mentors, plus opportunities to get involved with the work of the SLA Europe Board.


If you have any questions, please contact the for further information.