At Medical Museion we have started collecting conference posters to study visual and cultural practices in biomedical research. 

A conference poster is used to present new results that haven’t been published in articles or even completely verified. The poster resembles an academic article in the way it is constructed. It consists of a title, introduction, method, results, discussion/conclusion and acknowledgements. But it’s one of the only media in biomedical research where it is an accepted practice to use pictures or other illustrations to catch the public’s attention and still get recognition from your fellow researchers. The best posters are even rewarded with prices and sometimes large money amounts. In articles and most other forms of academic writing, it would be seen as populistic to use illustrations unless they are figures showing numerical research results. 

We would like to know more about how and why researchers use visual material in posters. Which kind of visual material do they use, which value do they think their posters have, and do their use of and interest in posters and visual communication change throughout their career? 

Some examples of style and content, in posters collected at this time:

 

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