Scala Days 2019 - Celebrating Collaborative Success

Thursday 17 January 2019

Darja Jovanovic


Scala Days 2019 Logo

This blog aims to answer various questions we’ve been asked in the last 6 months, such as “Why is Scala Days in Lausanne?”, “Will it be more expensive because it takes place in Switzerland?”, “Who is organising it this year?”, “How will the community be involved?”, “Will there be speaker support; diversity scholarship?”, “Is my partner welcome?” and more. All these questions helped the Scala Days organising team shape a truly inclusive event. We chose to cover many aspects, which is reflected in the lengthiness of this blog post - there’s no judgment if you decide to jump to the sections that interest you the most. Let’s begin…

A note to the Scala Community

Dear Scala User, Contributor, Library Author, Community Member, Former and Future Community Member, dear Tech Lead, Manager, Sponsor, Marketing Team, Recruiter, Start-up Founder, Event Manager, Admin Staff, Spouse, dear Professor, Student, Teaching Assistant, SUG Organiser, dear EPFL LAMP team, dear Scala team at Lightbend, Scala Center Team,

Dear Scala Enthusiasts all around the world,

Thank you for being a part of the Scala tech evolution for the past 15 years, for being an active part of its success story. Scala Days 2019, the 10th edition, is designed to acknowledge and celebrate this collaborative success, so read closely and discover how You can join and make the celebration that much special! Jump to Call for action section for concrete details.

A little bit of history (or: Why only a Lausanne edition in 2019)

Scala Days was first organised in 2010 at EPFL by the, at-the-time team, Prof. Odersky’s lab in Lausanne, Switzerland, with 155 participants and 33 talks over 2 days.

In the last 10 years Scala Days grew to become the leading Scala conference, gathering 1500 participants each year, 70+ talks and various workshops on 2 continents and supported on average by 20 sponsors.

Since EPFL is the “home” of Scala and Scala Days, it was a natural choice for this special edition. Not to mention the magnificent setting, blend between high-tech and raw-nature that Lausanne offers. But there is an additional reason: EPFL is also celebrating a big anniversary in 2019 → 50 years since it became a Swiss federal school.

We believe that 2019 is the perfect year for you to (re)visit The Olympic Capital and this wonderful university, be a part of a historical celebration and, of course, take a selfie in front of the Scala stairs (o:


The Scala Days 2019 organising team’s vision drew much of its inspiration from your feedback over the years. Our vision captured in one word would be Inclusiveness. In more than one: celebrating diversity and honoring contributions. How does this translate in reality?

  • Up to 30% lower ticket prices than usual, and student ticket prices - courtesy of EPFL subsidy;
  • Diversity scholarship and speaker support are part of the overall budget. By purchasing the ticket or sponsoring you are participating in this initiative;
  • Daycare during the conference and an accompanying option for your partners will be available;
  • Free community events, such as a Scala spree and ScalaBridge, will take place before and after the conference, bringing participants and local community members together to teach and learn for a day;
  • 2018 and 2019 Phil Bagwell Community Awards will be given during the conference.

Add to this list many social events we have in store and we can comfortably rename Scala Days to Scala Week 2019.

All events

Even if you are not attending the main event, the Scala Days conference, 11th-13th June you might be interested in a couple of surrounding events starting already on Monday, 10th June, and are mostly free. Check out the table below and keep in mind that definitive schedule should be expected by March 2019:

Scala Days 2019 Events

The Community dinner and guided tours are included in the price of the Conference ticket, entry fee applies if you chose to join only one of those.

Call for action

Submit a proposal until 20th of January

We encourage you to submit one or more proposals, even if you never gave a talk before. Here are some arguments:

  • We ask for about 600 characters for an abstract for now, so your talk doesn’t need to be ready - just your idea! Share it with us. If your proposal gets accepted you will still have 4 months to develop a presentation, maybe even try it out in a local Meetup.
  • Yes, Scala Days is known to have “heavy weighters” speaking, but do not get intimidated. Zahari Dichev gave his first talk ever at the Scala Days 2018, and here is his advice: “I looked at the talks and realized that the conference is very welcoming and being a scala guru who regularly hacks on the compiler was not a prerequisite for giving a talk”
  • Speaker support is part of the overall budget. Please see below for details;
  • If you are a part of a Scala tech team, the best way to get visibility and new international Scala friends is to present your talk. On top of that you get a “look behind the scenes” + an invitation to the special Speakers dinner on a boat on lake Geneva (Lac Léman as it is locally known).

So take an hour or two and fill in this simple CfP by the 20th of January. Let’s put the Program Committee to work (o:

Buy a ticket

As mentioned, this year’s ticket prices are lower than usual. The reason being that we are privileged to create the event as an university entity and therefore eligible for financial support.

The registration opens beginning of February, stay tuned!

Diversity & Inclusion

We encourage people from under-represented groups in programming to attend Scala Days and the related events, specifically by providing student ticket prices and diversity scholarships.

For ticket and travel support, we will add our event to DiversityTickets once the registration opens. The same form can also be used to apply for a ticket to the Typelevel Summit that happens the day after Scala Days. If you’re unsure whether you’d be eligible, or if you have any other questions, please contact [email protected].

Become a volunteer

We are looking for motivated, enthusiastic, Scala loving volunteers. And not only during the conference, but during the whole week. Volunteers would help us to cover the ground at Scala Days, welcome participants, be the first point of contact, assisting with directions and much more. We are looking for 10 to 15 individuals that are up for the challenge! If you want to help and get the free entrance, submit your proposal here and we will get back to you by the end of February.

Speaker support

To be eligible for speaker support, you first need to get your proposal accepted. If your company or university are not supporting you, please just reply to your “Accepted” email listing the reasons you would need a support and what kind. Our team will be communicating with you until all elements for the decision are in place and give you an answer in due time.

Become a Sponsor

Please send us a direct email to initiate this conversation. This year we are also encouraging Scala Startups to come forward as we have reserved a special space to showcase brave, young Scala companies.


We would like to showcase some of the history. Please share your “throwbacks” and tag us on Twitter @ScalaDays, we would like to hear from you and include some of your stories and photos in overall promotion.


If you don’t find yourself in any of the above, you can always hit that button: share, write - spread the word #happybirthdayscala. Follow us: @scaladays @darjutak @scala_lang @EPFLevents for up-to-date information.

2019 Organising team and partners

The Scala Center at EPFL is the main coordinator and producer of the 2019 Scala Days conference. Lightbend is a co-producer, along with Dajana Günther and many community leaders constitutes our most important advisory group. No decision is made without considering their wisdom. The Scala Center also wisely chose onsite and community partners to provide the best experience for all involved in Scala Days 2019.

SwissTech Convention Center, Lausanne Tourisme, Typelevel, Scala User Group Organisers and official Sponsors.

We are very much looking forward to hosting you and your closest. In the meantime, as Martin would say, “Have Fun With Scala”!