Session Formats

From Featured Speakers to Workshops, learn more about the session formats for programming tracks at the SXSW Conference.

Session Formats

2017 SXSW Conference Panel, Arts + Inclusivity: A Hip Hop Story – Photo by Tyler Draker

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About Session Formats


Book Readings

SXSW Book Readings are hour long sessions focusing on the launch of a new book, and give the author a chance to explore the themes or motifs present in their work. These are a great way for both first time and returning authors to showcase their latest title to a diverse audience. SXSW Book Reading sessions are followed by a Book Signing at the SXSW Bookstore.

Book Signings

Book Signings at the SXSW Bookstore provide attendees the opportunity to meet their favorite authors, purchase their latest work, and return home with an autographed copy.

Demo Listening & Pitch Sessions

Demo Listening Sessions provide artists and registrants direct and honest feedback from music professionals like producers, A&R reps, publicists, venue talent buyers, and music supervisors. We will be accepting music submissions via email prior to the 2017 SXSW Music Conference.

Featured Sessions

Structured around the various themes and trends at the SXSW Conference, Featured Sessions present a snapshot of the most transformative ideas shaping our future, while enabling creatives from across industries to achieve their goals.

Featured Speakers

SXSW Conference speakers come from all over the globe. When you attend the many workshops, conversations, and panels at the event, expect to hear from technology industry experts, filmmakers, artists, music supervisors, actors, publicists, legends, journalists, and much, much more.

Looking for mind-expanding presentations by industry leaders? SXSW Conference Featured Speakers bring together some of the biggest and brightest names of our time.


Keynote speakers embody the DIY spirit, ingenuity, and entrepreneurial drive that SXSW uniquely cultivates. These powerful presentations by diverse visionaries from the ever-evolving worlds of Interactive, Film, and Music are the center of the SXSW Conference.

Meet Ups

SXSW attracts thousands of registrants from across the globe that are looking for new ideas, new collaborators and an opportunity to create essential connections. Meet Ups are a fundamental and relaxed way to get connected with the dynamic SXSW community while mixing and mingling.

Mentor Sessions

Mentor Sessions offer one-on-one coaching with professionals from all aspects of the music, film, and interactive industries. Within the 75 minute duration of Mentor Sessions, there will be five one-on-one meetings lasting 15 minutes each. Advanced sign-up is required and access is limited to badge type.

Pitch Events

Organized in a competitive format, pitch events offer companies the opportunity to showcase their cutting-edge product or service to a panel of judges and the SXSW audience.

Browse 2017 Pitch Events, and stay tuned for 2018 information coming later in the season.

Round Tables

Round Tables, exclusive to Film, bring together three industry experts and SXSW attendees for an informal and enlightening discussion on a specific topic. Industry insiders will spend 20 minutes at each table before switching. Advanced sign-up is required and access is limited to badge type.

Browse the 2017 list of round table sessions, and stay tuned for 2018 information coming later in the season.

Solo / Dual / Panels

The vast majority of our Solo, Dual and Panel programming is sourced through PanelPicker®. Solo and Dual presentations offer a deep dive look into more targeted topics. Panels typically feature one moderator and up to three additional industry experts who represent different perspectives and opinions in a given area, making for a lively discussion. Each of these formats is one hour in length.


Hands-on, in-depth workshops offer advanced level information that revolves around a particular topic or skill and enable SXSW registrants to gain more expertise in their particular area of interest. Workshops vary in length from one and a half hours to three and a half hours, depending on the particular session. Advanced sign-up is required and access is limited to badge type.

Browse the 2017 list of workshops, and stay tuned for 2018 information coming later in the season.

Schedule Overview

Browse the overview of the 2018 schedule to start planning your SXSW Conference & Festivals experience from March 9-18 in Austin, Texas.

SXSWeek® Timeline

Schedule Overview

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Register to Attend SXSW 2018

Join us for unparalleled discovery, networking, and inspiration at the 2018 SXSW Conference & Festivals in Austin, Texas from March 9-18.

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Explore SXSW Conference Tracks

The SXSW Conference provides an opportunity for global professionals at every level to participate, learn, and network. Each track allows attendees to explore what’s next in the worlds of entertainment, culture, and technology.

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