Government and Tech Conferences Alter Plans Due to Coronavirus

Angelina Bambina/

Here’s a list of conferences canceling, postponing or switching to digital-only events due to the outbreak. 

Editor’s note: After March 18, Nextgov will stop updating this list given federal guidance warning against gatherings of 10 or more people. Nationwide, entire sports leagues have shuttered operations, conferences have been postponed or canceled and the vast majority of businesses have reduced operations.

Event organizers are postponing, moving and in some cases outright canceling government- and tech-related conferences in Washington, D.C. and elsewhere due to the novel coronavirus outbreak.

Normally a hotbed for events and conferences, the full impact to the Beltway and its millions of federal employees and contractors is not yet clear. However, the area’s myriad events—frequented by so many for knowledge exchange, networking and discussion—are already feeling the effects of uncertainty caused by COVID-19.

At Nextgov, we will keep a running tab of changes to government and technology for our readers:

Association of Government Accountants Events

AGA has rescheduled three conferences: The PIO/CFO Summit to June 11 at the Washington Convention Center; PDT 2020 to July 19-22 at the Gaylord Texan Hotel and Convention Center in Dallas and Internal Control & Fraud Prevention Training to Sept. 23-24 at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, D.C.

Women in Federal IT & Cyber Conference

The 3rd Annual Women in Federal IT and Cyber Conference, organized by the Federal CIO Council, has been postponed until summer. The event had been scheduled for March 23. For more information, click here

Professional Services Council’s FedHealth 2020

PSC’s FedHealth Conference 2020, scheduled for March 25, has been postponed. PSC will select a new date in the near future. For more information, click here


AFCEA’s AI+ML Summit, scheduled for April 28 in Washington, D.C., has been postponed. A new date has not yet been selected. For more information, click here.

Sea Air Space

The Navy League of the United States canceled the Sea Air Space conference scheduled for April 6-8 at the National Harbor after Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan prohibited gatherings larger than 250 attendees. Conference organizers said the event will return next year, April 12-14.


The United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation announced March 16 it ill determine a few days whether to postpone or cancel GEOINT 2020, scheduled for April 26-29 in Tampa, Florida. “At this time, we are ceasing registration and asking all vendors to cease any GEOINT 2020-related production,” the organizers posted on the event site

Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Industry Day

NAVFAC’s industry engagement day, scheduled for March 25 at the University of North Florida’s Adam W. Herbert University Center, located in Jacksonville, Florida, has been postponed indefinitely. 

NASA JPL Small Business Fair

The NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Small Business Opportunity Fair, scheduled for March 24 at the Pasadena Conference Center in California, has been postponed indefinitely

AFCEA Bethesda Events

AFCEA Bethesda has postponed its Young AFCEA Winter IT Luncheon, which was scheduled for March 26 at the National Press Club. Its March 19 Automation Transformation Townhall has transitioned to a digital-only event. 

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Small Business Open House

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Memphis District has postponed its March 24 open house event in Memphis. For more information, click here

Defense Department Small Business Open House

The Engineer Research and Development Center has canceled its small business open house, previously scheduled for March 26 in Vicksburg, Mississippi. 

All ACT-IAC Events

ACT-IAC has canceled, postponed or altered more than a half-dozen live events in the coming weeks to virtual events. For more information, visit the organization’s Coronavirus Resource Center.

All Government Executive Media Group events

Events organized by Government Executive Media Group, which includes Nextgov, DefenseOne, Government Executive and Route 50, within the next two months have been postponed. For more information, click here


The General Services Administration announced March 11 it canceled the Federal Acquisition Service Training (FAST) 2020 conference and all associated meetings. The events were scheduled to take place from April 13-16 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta. For more information, visit GSA’s website

Federal 100 Awards Gala

FCW and Public Sector 360 have postponed the 2020 Federal 100 Awards Gala. Originally scheduled for March 19 at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C., organizers will host the event at the same location on June 3. 

The SmallSat Revolution: Doing More with Less

The Universities Space Research Association and the Space Policy Institute of The George Washington University have canceled their satellite symposium, scheduled for March 26 in Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C. Issues Event Recommendations 

A statement March 11 from the Washington, D.C. Health Department and the Mayor’s Office recommends the cancelation or postponement of events with more than 1,000 people through March 31.

“DC Health recommends that non-essential mass gatherings, including conferences and conventions, be postponed or canceled. Mass gatherings are defined as events where 1,000 or more people congregate in a specific location. We also recommend that any social, cultural, or entertainment events where large crowds are anticipated be reconsidered by the organizer. This recommendation is in effect through March 31.”

Government Social Media Conference

The Government Social Media Conference, scheduled from March 24-26 in Seattle, has transitioned to an “entirely virtual” conference.

Electronic Entertainment Expo 2020

The world’s largest video game conference will not take place this June. According to a Wednesday announcement, E3 2020, which has taken place in Los Angeles annually since 1995, will be canceled. 

International Wireless Communications Expo

IWCO has postponed its major annual conference, initially scheduled for March 30 through April 3. A future date has not yet been selected. For more information, click here.

AUSA Global Force

The Association of the U.S. Army on March 10 canceled the Global Force Symposium and Exposition, scheduled for March 17-19 in Huntsville, Alabama. The organizers for the Army-focused annual event said it will be back next year from March 16-18. Attendees and exhibitors will be contacted with more information.

“For the health and safety of all of our members and the participants in Global Force, canceling next week’s event is, regrettably, the right decision,” said retired Gen. Carter Ham, AUSA’s president and CEO, in a statement.

 Google I/O

Google canceled the physical portion of what is often its largest tech conference. Google I/O was scheduled for May 12-14 at the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, California, and last year attracted 7,000 developers. 

Navy Industry Day

An industry day for the Naval Integration in a Contested Environment (NICE) Advanced Technology Exercise, scheduled for March 12 in Charleston, S.C, has been postponed. The U.S. Navy expects to host the industry day in a virtual capacity the week of March 16, though it has not yet selected a final date. For more information, click here.

C4I Operational Maintenance & Engineering Training 

The Naval Air Warfare Centers will host its C4I Operational Maintenance & Engineering Training industry day Wednesday, March 11 as scheduled at Webster Field. However, NAWC is requesting attendees who have traveled from any location the State Department has issued a Level 3 or Level 4 advisory in the past two weeks to forgo the event. For more information, click here.

Apache 2020 Conferences

The Apache Software Foundation canceled two upcoming summits: March 25 in Washington, D.C. and May 18-19 in Chicago. Apache’s Seattle roadshow event, scheduled for June 10-12, has been postponed.

Appian World 2020

Appian World 2020 will be a digital-only event. Appian’s flagship conference had been scheduled March 8-11 in Hollywood, Florida.

National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports ClinicThe National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic, organized by the Department of Veterans Affairs and had been scheduled to occur from March 29 to April 3, in Snowmass, Colorado, has been canceled. Click here for more information.

The Next Web Summit

One of Europe’s largest tech conferences, the Next Web Summit has been moved from June to Oct. 1-2. The event will be held in Amsterdam. 

IBM Think

IBM’s largest annual conference, scheduled May 5-7 in San Francisco, will be a digital-only event. The company has restricted its employees from attending conferences with more than 1,000 people. 

USDA/HHS Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee

The 2020 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, originally scheduled to be held in Washington, D.C. on Thursday, March 12 and Friday, March 13, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., will be held entirely online. In an email, USDA and HHS officials not the content and timing of the meeting will remain the same, and the public will still be allowed to view proceedings.

HIMSS 2020

Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society opted to cancel its global conference on March 5, citing the World Health Organization’s call for a “whole of government approach” to fighting the virus and recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports. The event—scheduled to kick off March 9 in Orlando, Florida—attracts health-focused public officials and health care professionals. 

“Additionally, there are concerns about disproportionate risk to the healthcare system given the unique medical profile of Global Conference attendees and the consequences of potentially displacing healthcare workers during a critical time, as well as stressing the local health systems were there to be an adverse event,” the organization said in a statement.

The organization’s frequently asked questions page says the event is unlikely to be scheduled, and it is working with hotels for reimbursement. 


The City of Austin, Texas, held a press conference the afternoon of March 6 to announce it would cancel the SxSW events scheduled for March 13-22. City officials said they were making a "data-driven," not a panic-based decision. Officials did not issue a blanket ban of public events, but decisions would be based on factors such as crowd size, density and whether participants may fly in from international locations. 

“The City of Austin has cancelled the March dates for SXSW and SXSW EDU. SXSW will faithfully follow the City’s directions,” organizers posted on the event’s website.

As of Friday, the event organizers said they are looking at rescheduling the event and providing an online SxSW experience. The event’s site said it will publish an FAQ soon.

Code for America

On March 6, Code for America canceled its Washington Summit scheduled for March 11-13. The organization said it will contact attendees on March 10 about refunds

Adobe Summit 2020

Scheduled for March 29 to April 2 in Las Vegas, Adobe Summit opted to switch its usually in-person conference to be digital-only. The annual conference brings tens of thousands of people and includes several high-profile government attendees.

Google Cloud Next

The company’s flagship cloud conference, scheduled from April 6-8 in San Francisco, has been rebranded as a “global, digital-first, multi-day experience,” with all sessions accessible online.


NVIDIA’s flagship conference, set for March 22-26 in San Jose, will also be streamed online as the company opted against having any participants at the San Jose Convention Center. 

Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s Regulatory Information Conference

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission canceled its Regulatory Information Conference, originally scheduled for March 10-12 in Bethesda, Maryland. The agency alerted the public in a tweet, and said it looks forward to 2021. 

Red Hat Summit

Red Hat’s annual conference will be digital-only this year. The event will take place April 28-29 instead of in San Francisco. 

SAP Cancels All March Events

The tech giant has canceled all in-person March events globally, and will not participate in any third-party events throughout the month. 

Facebook F8

Facebook’s flagship developer conference is canceled. It was scheduled for May 6-8 in San Jose. The organizers said they will replace the event with locally hosted and live-streamed events. 

Microsoft MVP

The software giant’s Most Valuable Professional conference has moved to an entirely digital format. The event was to be held on Microsoft’s Redmond campus March 15-20.

Qualtrics X4 Summit

The summit, originally scheduled for March 10-13 in Salt Lake City, will be rescheduled to early fall. A final date has not yet been confirmed.

NEXT STORY: Quick Hits