PanelPicker

PanelPicker® is the official SXSW user-generated session proposal platform. This easy, two-step online process allows the SXSW community to have a voice in what sessions are programmed at SXSW.



PanelPicker entries and voting is now closed. Stay tuned for 2021 programming announcements later in the season.


Kat Candler, Amanda Marsalis, Jennifer Phang, and Todd Rohal - SXSW 2019. Photo by John Feinberg

Kat Candler, Amanda Marsalis, Jennifer Phang, and Todd Rohal - SXSW 2019. Photo by John Feinberg

About PanelPicker

 

SXSW values community input and involvement. The two-step online process PanelPicker® was developed to encourage the SXSW community to enter proposals and have a significant voice in Conference programming. The SXSW community is then able to browse proposals, leave comments, and vote to help shape the event.

PanelPicker entries and voting is now closed. Stay tuned for 2021 programming announcements later in the season.

2021 Event Information

SXSW is launching SXSW Online as part of our 2021 offerings. The digital experience will feature conference keynotes and sessions, screenings, showcases, networking, and exhibitions. The dates for SXSW EDU Online are March 9-11, 2021 and SXSW Online will take place March 16-20, 2021.

Entries for the 2021 digital experience will open on Tuesday, October 6 with PanelPicker proposals for SXSW and SXSW EDU, as well as Film Festival submissions. In lieu of the standard showcase application process, the Music Festival will be curated by programming staff with priority given to showcase presenters and artists who were scheduled for the 2020 event.

SXSW is working with the City of Austin and public health authorities on plans for a physical event in 2021. We will provide updates as more information becomes available. Sign up to receive important SXSW updates.

Hugh Forrest PanelPicker Quote

"PanelPicker connects us with the thousands of creative professionals, experts and decision-makers from the many disciplines in the global SXSW community. This interface helps us identify the most compelling new ideas within the many different industries we serve and, in so doing, keeps SXSW exciting, timely, and relevant."

Hugh Forrest
SXSW Chief Programming Officer

2021 Themes

 

A NEW URGENCY

2020 has amplified issues like racial injustice, poverty, nationalism, and the climate crisis amidst a global pandemic. The future depends on the business, non-profit, government, science, and technology communities all working together. What advancements are needed to create immediate and lasting progress?

CHALLENGING TECH’S PATH FORWARD

If we are to achieve real change as a society, then the many ways in which the tech industry impacts our lives must be leveraged as a positive force. To build a better tomorrow, what lessons can an industry integral to our existence learn from its current failings?

CULTURAL RESILIENCE IN THE ARTS

Great art often thrives in times of turmoil and chaos. How will the eruption of creativity we are currently seeing across music, film, experiential, written, and visual arts impact our culture for the next decade and beyond?

THE REBIRTH OF BUSINESS

From startups to small companies to major corporations, capitalism must be examined as we look to rebuild the global economy. A potential leveling of the playing field awaits if we seize this opportunity for more equitable systems across race, gender, and class.

TRANSFORMING THE ENTERTAINMENT LANDSCAPE

Conventional wisdom from entertainment industries has lost its shine in the face of evolving consumer habits, technological advancements, and an increased focus on social issues. These pressures are forcing a much needed metamorphosis. What lessons can music, film, television, sports, and gaming learn to keep up with an ever-accelerating pace of change?

CONNECTION IN DISCONNECTION

We’re living lives we never could have imagined as we head into our own brave new world. The consequences of social isolation have been brewing for years. Now online platforms are some of the only outlets available to foster a sense of community. How do we return to a world where individual concerns give way to embracing the value of humanity?

AN UNCHARTED FUTURE

Biohacking, consumer space travel, quantum physics, radical life extension, drone delivery — these concepts that once belonged in science fiction are now part of our immediate future. What mind-blowing new ideas will inspire the next generation of innovators?

Community Voting

 

All ideas received during the PanelPicker® entry period will be posted online for community voting from November 10-20, 2020. It’s as easy as “review, comment, and vote” to help shape SXSW programming.

Community votes comprise 30% of the final decision plus input of the SXSW Staff (30%) and Advisory Board (40%) helps ensure that less well-known voices have as much of a chance as being selected to speak at SXSW as individuals with large online followings. Together these percentages help determine the final content lineup.

PanelPicker Community Voting graph

Public Votes: 30%
Who knows what you want to see at SXSW better than you? Your input is very important in terms of shaping the look and feel of the March event.

SXSW Advisory Board: 40%
A group of 200+ industry experts from around the world, the SXSW Advisory Board provides significant feedback on all entries.

SXSW Staff: 30%
With years of experience programming this event, SXSW staffers work to fill any gaps in relevant subject matter, striking a balance between new and veteran speakers.

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