Scott Wallsten included some disheartening analysis in his announcement the TPI Aspen event had to be virtual, even if delayed to October. "Let’s assume that people can converse meaningfully when six feet apart in a space that is unlikely to be quiet. Two people need to stand six feet apart. Easy enough. A conversation with three people requires standing in a triangle with six-foot sides, requiring about 15.6 square feet of floor space. A four-person conversation requires a square with 6 foot sides requiring 36 square feet. As more people enter the group, the shape becomes circular and the square footage required for that conversation increases with the square of the radius."
He adds, "Social distancing in a group that is together for a multiple-day conference is unrealistic even if it is possible. Social distancing is intended to keep people apart. Conferences are intended to bring people together. People want to talk and mingle. It’s human nature and one of the benefits of in-person events."
The TPI event always features outstanding speakers, including academics the policy people can learn from. I would go every year if I could afford the airfare.