Colleges and universities are wrestling with how to reopen their campuses for the fall semester. With social distancing requirements likely in place through the rest of the year, any environment that brings large groups of people together in close proximity can create new opportunities for the coronavirus to flourish.
That includes professional meetings. Institutions may also be reticent to permit faculty to travel to such meetings, fearing that they may bring the virus back to their campuses. It could result in new spikes of cases or, at best, require travelers to quarantine for 14 days upon their return, disrupting many of their academic responsibilities. Given that professional societies sponsor many such meetings, they are in the precarious situation of planning professional meetings for their members with the uncertainty of who will or can attend these events.