We are pleased to provide this special issue of the British Journal of Anaesthesia (BJA) in association with the PostGraduate Assembly (PGA) of the New York State Society of Anesthesiologists (NYSSA). The PGA is one of the largest international gatherings of anaesthesiologists, with a strong clinical and educational focus. The BJA in collaboration with the PGA continues its strong commitment to innovative approaches to education by once again producing this special issue of the BJA to correspond with the meeting based on a selection of clinically relevant lectures from the 70th Annual PostGraduate Assembly held in New York City, December 9–13, 2016. This is the eighth special issue published to coincide with the PGA. This year’s special issue is published online only and is available free to registrants of the PGA through links available on the PGA website (http://www.nyssa-pga.org/pga-meeting) and provided at registration, as well as to regular subscribers of the BJA through their subscriptions.