Workshops & Field Trips

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Workshop – Media skills training

Workshop organisers – Paul Holper & Simon Torok, Scientell 

Dtae and time – Friday 1 December, 0900-1100

Fee – $20 inc GST

Workshop description – There are many advantages to communicating your research through the media: informing people about the work and its importance, raising the profile of your subject area, eliciting action, and possibly helping with funding.

This session will explain how traditional media – print, TV and radio – works and how to increase your chances of having your work covered. It will also summarise the evolving media landscape, and how to select appropriate media for publicising your work. It will include advice about identifying the story and hook in your work, interacting with journalists, and tips for appearing on radio and TV. We will also provide pointers on what to do if you’re contacted unexpectedly by the media.

This will be a practical session. Participants should have in mind a research topic that they would like to develop into a media story. 

Workshop – Data Science in monitoring programmes: empowering management and conservation

Workshop organisers – Fernando Cagua and Bernat Bramon Mora, School of Biological Sciences, University of Canterbury, New Zealand

Dtae and time – Friday 1 December, 1000-1200

Fee – $20 inc GST

Workshop description – Data Science, “the responsible use of data for decision-making”, has been embraced by companies in many fields for optimising their processes and improving their resource management. Notably, these good practices in business can also be put into practice for conservation science because the successful management of natural resources involves making data-driven decisions in shifting social and ecological settings.

To support this decision-making, environmental management agencies often establish monitoring programmes that provide information about the status and trends of the resources of interest. However, while monitoring and management frameworks outlining how data can be used for decision making are well established, cases of data

being collected—but not used—occur too frequently. Small or under-funded organisations are more likely to be in this “data rich but insight poor” situation. Although managers are often acutely aware of this disconnect, they are unable to address its root because data management, manipulation, and analysis, are often more complex and expensive than anticipated. In this workshop, we will show how relatively simple data science tools can be used to bridge this gap and create an efficient workflow for data monitoring. With the right systems in place, we will demonstrate that automated reports and user-friendly interactive web apps can easily provide managers and scientific staff with direct and immediate overview of not only the data being collected, but also how it relates to the actual resource(s) being managed and the associated conservation values.

This workshop will be of interest to any scientists whose work involves collection, monitoring or evaluation of experimental data. This includes: undergrads that see themselves as future experimental scientists; early career scientists who want to optimise their fieldwork strategies and learn some powerful tools that could become key for their future research; and, advanced ecologists that want their research group to benefit from tools for efficient data management.

A practical example will outline the key ideas and tools by which experimental scientists or any data-dependent agency can benefit from a data science perspective. This example will be broken down to introduce the key elements and concepts that will help scientists or managers implement an efficient data monitoring system.

Participants are requested to bring a laptop (fully charged) and/or a smartphone.


Workshops & Field Trips are always a highlight of the conference we’re really keen to put together some great programs for you. If you’ve got any suggestions for our Field Trips & Workshops PLEASE let us know by clicking on the links below and sending your proposal via email to

Field Trip Proposals  or  Workshop Proposals