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15 September 2023
What to wear for academic conferences

What to wear for academic conferences?The appropriate attire for an academic conference can vary depending on the field, the location, and the specific conference's culture. However, it is generally recommended to dress in professional or business casual attire. Here are some guidelines to help you determine what to wear:

What to wear for academic conferences

1. Business formal: Some conferences, especially those in more formal fields like law or business, may require business formal attire. This typically includes a suit (for both men and women) in neutral or conservative colors, such as black, navy, or gray. Pair it with a collared shirt and a tie for men, and a blouse or a tailored dress shirt for women.

2. Business casual: Many academic conferences have a business casual dress code. This allows for a slightly more relaxed and comfortable attire while still maintaining a professional appearance. For men, this may include dress slacks or chinos with a button-down shirt or a polo shirt. Women can opt for dress slacks or a skirt with a blouse or a sweater.

3. Smart casual: In some cases, a smart casual dress code is appropriate. This is a more relaxed style that still maintains a polished look. Men can consider wearing khakis or dress pants with a collared shirt or a sweater. Women can choose dress slacks, a skirt, or a dress paired with a blouse or a sweater.

4. Comfortable footwear: As academic conferences often involve a significant amount of walking and standing, it is important to wear comfortable shoes. Opt for closed-toe shoes that are professional in appearance and provide support. Avoid wearing overly casual footwear like sneakers or flip-flops.

5. Adapt to the occasion: Some conferences may have specific events or social gatherings where the dress code is more relaxed or themed. In such cases, it's important to follow any guidelines provided by the organizers. For example, a conference dinner may call for cocktail attire or semi-formal wear.

It's always a good idea to do some research beforehand to get a sense of the conference's culture or if there are any specific dress code recommendations. You can also consider reaching out to other attendees or the conference organizers for clarification.

Remember, it's better to be slightly overdressed than underdressed at an academic conference. Dressing professionally shows respect for the event and helps create a positive impression among colleagues and potential collaborators.