FAQ for Eurocrypt 2007
Written by Moni Naor (PC Chair)
For the Eurocrypt 2007 Call For Papers see here.
The purpose of this document is to give some advice about writing submissions
to the conference and explain a few changes with respect to previous conferences.
It does not repeat the basic information
given in the CFP, such as dates, how to submit and scope of the conference.
- What should I do to increase the chances of my paper
The simple answer is have good results
and present them well. There are plenty of online guides regarding
writing scientific papers. For instance, this collection
Goldreich's lively and opinionated essay
and Shai Halevi's writing advice aimed at conference submissions.
I would like point few things especially relevant for the
Emphasize the motivation for the paper. In particular, if a
paper makes up a new variant of a classical notion it is the
authors' responsibility to make the case for the new notion.
Have a clear statement of the contributions of the paper - early
on in the writeup and clearly marked. Explain the nature of the contribution,
e.g. new model or improved cryptanalysis.
Explain the background and compare previous work with the
- Follow the official guidelines regarding length of paper. Remember, the paper
has to be readable and appreciated without reading the appendices. Also use a reasonable font size.
If there isn't sufficient space for proofs - at least hint why
they work. Use the appendix to give more information.
Start writing well in advance. No requests for extensions will
- My paper was rejected from a previous IACR conference.
Should I submit again?
A Committee's work is just “best effort" given the tight time schedule.
There are some subjective criteria and there is always the
possibility that the committee's tastes didn't match those of the
authors. So trying again may not necessarily be a bad idea.
However, it is important to consider whether this conference is indeed
the right venue for it.
It is extremely important to address the referee's comments from previous submissions (if
you received them).
- Who selects the papers and how?
The program committee selects the papers. Each paper is assigned
to (at least) three PC members who read it, write a report and give
scores. Then the committee deliberates both online and in a face-to-face
- Who selects the program committee?
The Program committee chair forms the committee. This is done
after consultations with many people, with an emphasis on broadening
- Are there other people involved in the evaluation process?
Subreviewers are used to enhance the expertise and ease the burden
from the PC members. They submit a report to the PC member who
asked for their help. The external referees are held to the same
commitment of confidentiality as PC members. Also they should not
farm out the reviewing any further.
- Are program committee members allowed to submit papers to
This time we decided not to allow program committee members to
submit papers at all (usually in IACR conferences one or two
papers are allowed for PC members). The advantages are: (i) Better
reviews, since the most qualified PC member is the author. Also PC papers increase the load
on the remaining PC members, since such papers usually require more reviews. (ii) PC
members see the full picture on a topic, as well as the endgame when
the last papers are decided.
(iii) Increases the perception of fairness. The disadvantages of zero PC papers are:
(i) It lowers the quality of the papers (PC members are
usually the most active members of the community). (ii) It is a disincentive to be a
PC member. (iii) It is unfair to the co-authors of PC members,
- May I submit a related paper to another conference simultaneously?
Recall that the CFP explicitly states
"Submissions must not substantially duplicate work that any of the authors has published elsewhere
or has submitted in parallel to any other conference or workshop with proceedings."
So if you submit a related paper be sure to refer to it and explain the differences between
the two submissions. Note IACR's policy on irregular submissions.
- What's the deal with anonymous submissions?
Authors may choose to anonymize their papers or not. Anonymous
papers will be treated as usual, i.e. the author's identity will
not be revealed to the program committee; the only information on the authors
available to the committee is whatever is given in the paper. If you do not anonymize the paper,
you may choose to put
the name of the authors at the end of the paper, to simulate time limited anonymity.
The question of anonymity of submissions is one of the most
emotionally charged issues in our community. It gets far more
attention than it deserves. The arguments for anonymity are: (i)
It Increases the perception of fairness (ii) It Combats subconscious
bias by the reviewers. The arguments against anonymity are: (i) It hinders the
evaluation process. (ii) It hides reviewers biases and allows more
cliquish behavior to go unchecked. (iii) It is a sham: given the
various forms of disseminating information nowadays it is easy to
learn the identity of the authors of a paper, voluntarily or not (unless they make an
effort not to publicize it). Paraphrasing Kevin McCurley's in his
invited talk at Eurocrypt 2006, search is a side channel attack.
(iv) It does not discourage haphazard submissions.
This last point is the main reason why I don't view anonymous
submissions as a good idea. I believe in accountability: just like
published papers, submissions should carry the author's name. They
should be part of the process where one gains and ruins a
The current system of optional anonymity by author's is a
compromise. It removes the hypocrisy and formalizes the de facto
situation in previous conferences. It does not address concerns
that people have about bias in favor of famous authors, but does
address concerns such as bias with respect to unknown institutions
or countries (assuming sufficiently many papers are anonymous).
- Comments on papers
Our goal is to give meaningful comments to authors of both
rejected and accepted papers. The default for the report is that
it should be available to the authors (though exceptions could be
- Will there be a rebuttal process regarding the referee reports on the submissions?
There is no official processes of this nature. However, the committee may contact the authors and ask
them questions or request comments. So be prepared and check the e-mail address you gave in submission.
- Will there be a best paper award?
Yes, we are planning one. This is another reason not to have any PC member submitting papers.