How Historians Can Re-purpose Conference Papers & Lectures

Otis RepurposeHistorians spend a lot of time writing conference papers and lectures. Often we use this content to serve a singular purpose and then we forget about it.

But what if you could turn your conference papers and lectures into something more? Something that helps you promote your work and generate more interest in it?

In this post you will learn how you can repurpose your conference papers and lectures into video and audio content that will build your platform and help you reach a wider audience.

How to Reach a Wider Audience

A great time slot on a conference program may allow as many as 50-100 people to hear your paper. Often attendance will be less than that.

You may experience similar attendance for one of your public talks or lectures.

But what if you could repurpose and reuse the material in your conference papers and lectures to reach a wider audience with minimal work, would you do it?

Technology has made it possible for you to make all of the content you produce accessible to a wider audience.

You could transform your conference papers and lectures into blog posts, feature articles for online and print newspapers and magazines, podcast episodes, or educational videos. All of these mediums will help you spread word about your work to a wider audience.

In particular, videos and podcasts make up some of the most shared media on the internet. These media types will help you attract an audience who loves history, but doesn't necessarily have time to read or the ability to attend a conference.


Video ContentCreating Video Content

Using software like Screenflow or SlideShare and a lavalier microphone, you could record your conference papers or lectures as you give them.

You could also use these tools to record your work from the comfort of your home or office.

Software like Screenflow captures whatever you show on your computer screen.

A lavalier microphone clipped to your blouse or lapel will capture your voice as you deliver your paper or lecture. You can use this audio recording as a podcast episode and/or add it to your Screenflow or SlideShare file to create a narrated slide show presentation.

Uploading this audio and video content to your website will make it accessible to all of your followers, students, colleagues, potential publishers, and other people interested in your work.

You can also link this content to your web-based CV or resume to draw attention to your capabilities as both a scholar and a public speaker, a great resource for those interested in hiring a speaker.



Below you will find a video recording of “Memory, Community, Loyalty: Albany, New York, 1763-1776,” the paper I presented at the 2014 Conference on New York State History. I recorded the video using Screenflow and a [simpleazon-link asin="B00BHN05H2" locale="us"]Rode Smartlav Lavalier Microphone[/simpleazon-link].

I have posted the video of my paper with 3 goals in mind:

1. To provide people who did not attend my panel with the opportunity to hear my paper.

2. To spread the reach of my work.

YouTube is a powerful search engine. By uploading and tagging my video with relevant search terms, I hope to increase awareness about my research using the power of Google and YouTube search.

When people search for Albany, New York, the American Revolution, the French and Indian War, the British Empire, the British Army, or the fur trade, perhaps Google and YouTube will present my video as an option.

3. To enhance my online CV.

I have linked the title of my conference paper to this video so that anyone who peruses my online CV can view my presentation.



Historians spend a lot of time creating conference papers and lectures. By repurposing this content into audio and visual presentations we will increase the likelihood that interested persons will find out about us and benefit from our research.


What Do You Think

Do you repurpose your conference papers and lectures? If so, how? 


"Memory, Community, Loyalty: Albany, New York, 1763-1776”