LARS 2019 will feature a Research Consortium on October 12. The Consortium will provide selected graduate students (MSc and PhD-level) working in recommender systems research with a unique opportunity to receive critical feedback about their work and to further develop their research agenda under the guidance of distinguished and established researchers in the field.

Consortium Format

The format of the Research Consortium will be primarily poster presentations supplemented by breakout sessions to provide advice and Q&A opportunities with senior researchers in the field. Presentations should be given in English and will be limited to 10 minutes, followed by 20 minutes for feedback and discussion. Each student will be paired with two mentors who will provide feedback and guide the discussion of the student’s work during the Consortium.

The small group setting will also allow for an open discussion of issues and challenges related to the work presented by the students. In particular, students will receive valuable feedback on how to prepare competitive submissions to the upcoming ACM RecSys 2020 in Rio. Moreover, it will offer the students an opportunity to establish a supportive community, including other graduate students at a similar stage of their research.

Consortium Application

Applications are invited from graduate students pursuing a Master’s or PhD degree in a Latin American university who would benefit from detailed discussions of their research by a panel of established researchers. Student applications should be written in English and include the following:

  1. An extended abstract (see below)
  2. A curriculum vitae
  3. A one-paragraph statement of expected benefits of participation, including questions regarding your dissertation that you would like to ask your Consortium mentors
  4. A brief letter of recommendation from your Master’s or PhD advisor focused on how your participation in the Research Consortium will benefit your dissertation research

Submission Instructions

Submit items 1-3 above in the Application Form. You should watch to make sure you get an email confirming receipt from one of the Research Consortium chairs within a couple days of submission. Item 4 should be emailed by your advisor directly to us at

Extended Abstract

Prepare a two-page (excluding references) extended abstract of your thesis work in the two-column ACM SIG Proceedings Format (sigconf). This abstract should include:

  • Thesis statement or key research question(s), clearly indicated
  • Motivation (why are you studying this problem in this way?)
  • Brief discussion of key background literature
  • Proposed methodology
  • Summary of results so far (with citations to published work, if any results have already been published)
  • Expected contributions

The extended abstract will be evaluated with regard to:

  • Originality of the work with respect to current concepts and techniques (provide relevant citations)
  • Importance of the work with respect to fundamental issues in recommender systems (clearly identify the problems you are trying to solve)
  • Rigor and validity of claims, argumentation, methodology, results, and interpretations
  • Clarity and persuasiveness of expression

Please write your extended abstract to the same quality standards as a regular RecSys submission.

Selection Criteria

To provide maximum feedback to each student, participation in the Consortium is limited. Selection is based on two broad criteria:

Value of the Consortium to the student:

  • The degree to which the applicant is positioned to benefit from participation, including the student’s position in the research process (the greatest benefit is for students with a developed research idea but much of the work yet undone).
  • The degree to which the student may otherwise lack access to a diverse set of feedback and input on his or her research plans (e.g., availability of local experts and advisors).

Value of the student’s participation to other students:

  • The quality of the extended abstract (as identified above), both as a model of excellent research and as an indication of the student’s potential in the field.
  • Diversity of participation, including diversity by institution, country, research topic and approach, and demographics. In general, we will limit participation to one or two students per institution, depending on the number of applicants.
  • Evidence that the student will be an effective and active participant, providing feedback to others and helping to build a research network.

Travel Support

Research Consortium participants will be eligible to receive travel support for coming to LARS 2019. A number of travel grants will be available for students from all over Latin America. Supported students may be requested to be part of the student volunteer cohort.

Important Dates

  • Application deadline: August 21, 2019 (NEW DEADLINE: August 28, 2019)
  • Acceptance notification: September 4, 2019
  • Research Consortium: October 12, 2019

Deadlines refer to 23:59 (11:59pm) in the AoE (Anywhere on Earth) time zone.


  • Pablo Castells (Univ. Autónoma de Madrid, Spain)
  • Dietmar Jannach (Univ. Klagenfurt, Austria)
  • Joseph Konstan (Univ. of Minnesota, USA)
  • Marcelo Manzato (USP, Brazil)
  • Leandro Marinho (UFCG, Brazil)
  • Fernando Mourão (SEEK AI, Brazil)
  • Denis Parra (PUC, Chile)
  • Rodrygo Santos (UFMG, Brazil)
  • Tao Ye (Pandora, USA)

Research Consortium Chair