Going to a conference, DOE meeting, or other visit? Find more info below.


There are a lot of great reasons to go to scientific conferences:

  • you keep up to date on developments in the field

  • you will get to know the people in the field

  • you are broadcasting your work to the research community. Many if not most people learn about new research by hearing about it at a conference. Thus, if you want people to know about your work, you must be willing to tell people about it.

If you are first-year student, you can simply attend a conference (no poster/talk required). After your first year, you are expected to present a poster/talk.

You should identify conferences you’d like to attend several months (ideally >6 months) in advance.

Abstract deadlines often come early. For example, the deadline for MRS Spring 2023 (April 10-14, 2023) was almost a full six months before: October 27, 2022!

Once you have identified a conference you’d like to attend, please take the following actions:

  • Tell Kristin about the conference and what project you’d like to present as soon as possible

  • Submit a conference travel request form. This form is a very basic and takes a few minutes to fill out. If you do not submit the travel request form several months in advance, you may not receive LBNL approval to attend.

  • Work with Kristin to submit an abstract. You should send her the proposed abstract (with all details - title, authors, text, figures, etc.) with at least 3 days advance notice.

Once you have received approval to attend the conference, you can begin taking the normal steps to book travel.

Travel Funded through LBNL

If you haven’t done so already, make sure your travel profile (e.g., your frequent flier programs) are completed for the lab. E-mail if you don’t have a travel profile yet. You will need to set this up to get access to Concur.

Flights, rental cars, and hotels can be booked easily through Concur (see below).

Note: your username for Concur is YOUR_EMPLOYEE_ID@lbl.

You should not have to pay upfront for anything booked Concur. Flights will be automatically ticketed (and paid for) by the lab. For rental car and hotels, you will need to pay out of pocket and be reimbursed later.

If you are planning to combine vacation and travel, remember the lab’s policy of taking only one vacation day per two work days. Note that days spent traveling to and from the conference count as work days.

In terms of travel receipts and reimbursement:

You do not need to save receipts for meals. You will receive a per diem instead. You also do not need receipts for taxi rides under $75, although you may want to submits them anyway when you have them.

If you are traveling with outside funding (e.g., the conference organizers are going to reimburse you), save all receipts and tickets as they may be needed for reimbursement.

The proper way to request reimbursements for trips within the US is through the esdradmin site’s “Travel:Domestic” tab. If you have trouble, you can email

MSD point of contact: Jasmin Harris (

As for international trips including Canada, you should get in touch with the ESDR admin person that you work with. That person will provide you a corresponding form and help you through the (more complex) process of international-travel reimbursement.

For those funded by MSD, select Yuan Ting Lin Hou (Tracy Hou) as your travel approver in TREX. Guidelines for using TREX and creating an expense report:

Travel Funded through UC Berkeley

ERSO handles administrative matters for the College of Engineering at UC Berkeley. Individuals can pay out of pocket for travel expenses and then submit a reimbursement request through the ERSO intranet. Unlike LBL, approval for attending a conference is not required with UC Berkeley.

Travel Policy Key Points:

ERSO Reimbursement:

ERSO Travel Website:

Last updated