HotCloud '20 Call for Papers

The 12th USENIX Workshop on Hot Topics in Cloud Computing (HotCloud '20) will take place on July 13–14, 2020, and will be co-located with the 2020 USENIX Annual Technical Conference.

Sponsored by USENIX, the Advanced Computing Systems Association.

Important Dates

  • Paper submissions due: Thursday, March 17, 2020, 8:59 p.m. PDT Tuesday, March 24, 2020, 8:59 pm PDT—deadline extended!
  • Notification to authors: Thursday, April 30, 2020
  • Final papers due: Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Workshop Organizers

Program Co-Chairs

Amar Phanishayee, Microsoft Research
Ryan Stutsman, University of Utah

Program Committee

Peter Alvaro, University of California, Santa Cruz
Behnaz Arzani, Microsoft Research
Mahesh Balakrishnan, Facebook
Adam Belay, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Theo Benson, Brown University
Ivan Beschastnikh, University of British Columbia
Angela Demke Brown, University of Toronto
Jose Faleiro, Microsoft Research
Pedro Fonseca, Purdue University
Mike Freedman, Princeton University
Jana Giceva, Imperial College London
Jon Howell, VMware Research
Zsolt Istvan, IMDEA Software Institute
Arvind Krishnamurthy, University of Washington
Jonathan Mace, Max Plank Institute
Jeanna Matthews, Clarkson University
Heather Miller, Carnegie Mellon University
Derek Murray, Google
Cristina Nita-Rotaru, Northeastern University
Aurojit Panda, New York University
Deian Stefan, University of California, San Diego
Shivaram Venkataraman, University of Wisconsin—Madison
Ymir Vigfusson, Emory University
Michael Wei, VMware Research
Daniel Williams, IBM Research
Matei Zaharia, Stanford University

Steering Committee

Irfan Ahmad, CachePhysics
Dilma Da Silva, Texas A&M University
Eyal de Lara, University of Toronto
Christina Delimitrou, Cornell University
Rodrigo Fonseca, Brown University
Casey Henderson, USENIX Association
Dan R. K. Ports, Microsoft Research
Swaminathan Sundararaman, Pyxeda AI
Hakim Weatherspoon, Cornell University


The HotCloud workshop provides a forum for cutting-edge cloud research and a place where researchers and industry practitioners can discuss new opportunities and challenges in cloud computing. Submissions should propose a new position or research direction, explore non-traditional approaches, or report on noteworthy or counterintuitive experiences in emerging areas. Submissions will be judged on their originality, technical merit, topical relevance, and the likelihood of leading to insightful discussions that will influence future cloud systems design and applications.

In keeping with the goals of the workshop, the review process will favor submissions that are early-stage, forward-looking, and/or open-ended. If you are only a few months away from submitting to SOCC, NSDI, VLDB, OSDI, SOSP, etc., you are probably already past the sweet spot for this workshop. If you have a forward-looking or unorthodox idea or new research, and some evidence or early working system to support your view, but still have open questions, consider bringing your work to HotCloud. Position papers that solicit discussion on controversial topics, introduce emerging methods and paradigms, or call out new research directions are especially of interest.

To help facilitate discussion, the program will include significant additional time and activities dedicated to constructive questions, debate, and feedback. Hence, the program committee reserves the right to accept some submissions as "poster only" to ensure ample room for discussion while being broad and inclusive across different ideas.

Topics of Interest

HotCloud is open to examining all models of cloud computing, including the scalable management of in-house servers, remotely hosted Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), infrastructure augmented with tools and services that provide Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). Interesting issues show up at all levels of the software stack, but HotCloud's emphasis is on combining mechanisms to build working clouds rather than on implementing new low-level mechanisms themselves. For example, papers on using virtual machines in new ways would be preferred over papers on improving core VM technology.

Topics of interest include but are not limited to the following:

  • Improving elasticity and availability in cloud infrastructure and cloud services
  • Cloud support for new hardware technologies (e.g. accelerators and GPUs)
  • Cloud data management and analytics
  • Multi-tenancy and related issues such as performance isolation
  • Machine Learning for systems
  • Systems for Machine Learning
  • Micro-cloud (or Cloudlet) infrastructure
  • Charging models and economics
  • Power-efficient ("green") computing for clouds
  • Monitoring, troubleshooting, and failure recovery
  • Debugging and performance analysis of cloud applications
  • Cloud management and configuration
  • Virtual appliance management and composition
  • Storage architectures for cloud computing
  • Novel networking approaches for cloud computing
  • Programming models
  • Security and privacy in clouds
  • New applications for clouds
  • Mobility
  • Cloud workload management including migration to disparate clouds

What to Expect from the Workshop

The program committee encourages active participation from authors, presenters, and attendees. A key element of this is a moderated discussion on each presented paper where contributions from workshop participants are highly encouraged. We'd like to hear from people about additional context, issues, and prior work—not just ask questions. To allow this level of engagement, the accepted papers will be available for download in advance of the workshop so participants can come prepared.

The workshop will be one day. At least one author of each accepted paper must attend the workshop to present the paper (through a talk and/or poster session), participate in discussions, and answer questions; if you have any questions or concerns about attending the workshop as a presenting author, please contact the program co-chairs via to discuss. Presentation details and guidelines will be communicated to the authors of the accepted papers. The poster session may include posters from authors of accepted papers; some submitted papers may also be accepted as posters only.

In each session, there will be significant time devoted to discussion among authors and attendees. There will also be an online discussion for each paper, which will provide another forum for engagement. This will also be facilitated by a discussion section in the paper, as described below.

Submission Instructions

Regular submissions must be no longer than five (5) two-column pages excluding references and the discussion section and should be submitted electronically via the submission form.

Discussion Topics Section: In keeping with the workshop format described above, authors of each full paper are required to add an additional section (beyond the 5-page limit), immediately before references, no longer than a half a page (i.e., a single (1) column) that explicitly calls out what kind of feedback the authors are looking to receive. These could be specific questions about feasibility, applicability, open problems, challenges, limitations, specific design choices, assumptions, importance, or similar issues. The review process will favor papers that are likely to stimulate discussion and benefit from feedback from workshop participants.

Submissions should be PDF documents that are viewable by standard tools. Submissions must follow the USENIX formatting guidelines: 10-point type on 12-point (single-spaced) leading, with the text block being no more than 7" wide by 9" deep.

Submissions to HotCloud '20 may not be under consideration for any other venue. Simultaneous submission of the same work to multiple venues, submission of previously published work, or plagiarism constitutes dishonesty or fraud. USENIX, like other scientific and technical conferences and journals, prohibits these practices and may take action against authors who have committed them. See the USENIX Conference Submissions Policy for details. Questions? Contact your program co-chairs,, or the USENIX office,

The review process is double-blind. Authors must not be identified in the submissions, either explicitly or by implication. When it is necessary to cite your own work, cite it as if it were written by a third party. Do not say "reference removed for blind review." Papers from industry may identify the company or the product. For example, it is acceptable to talk about Company X's Product Y (X and Y need not be blinded). Papers accompanied by nondisclosure agreement forms will not be considered. Accepted submissions will be treated as confidential prior to publication on the USENIX HotCloud '20 website; rejected submissions will be permanently treated as confidential.

All papers will be available online to registered attendees before the workshop. If your accepted paper should not be published prior to the event, please notify The papers will be available online to everyone beginning on the first day of the workshop.