Sep 23
Caught in the ASC web

​​​​It's a task much easier said than done. Beyond the walls of the ASC and the noises of science, many wouldn't be ready to recognise our place in the ecosystem or foodweb. Didn't our species evolve to be prowling the web like a spider rather than ingrained in it like a struggling fly? They might think…

But science sees us very much one dot, albeit a very large one, in a large nexus. Everything that takes place in the marine world affects and is affected by that which happens on the land – and those systems that span both.

Theme session M, which acknowledges this interconnectedness, wrapped up today following its opening yesterday. It featured a couple of talks that were pitched more at my sort of level, including one on ecotourism in the Azores and the demographics involved in whale watching, swimming with sharks and big game hunting. How much do they bring to economy? And who are they? It's interesting both because it bridges humans and the ecosystem but also because it stands for the sort of foundation study for lots of the integrated work that is layered on top of it. Things get much more complex than that of course.​

For some of the other brief highlights, take a look at some of these thought-provoking tweets from yesterday.

DSC_3860.JPGTracy Playle of Pickle Jar Communications​​ talks on the the empathy, entertainment, humour and usefulness that should be considered when devliering any content to an audience.

As well as much other science, there was also a first-ever meeting for those who share and disseminate it. Involving communicators from various institutes and organizations, the get-together was a pow-wow of stories of how, why and to whom we all communicate. There were discussions, a quiz, and a special talk that focussed on content – more specifically targeted, winning content. How to get the message across? I have a feeling it's something that communicators and scientists like could take inspiration from this kind of thing. As long as it's a case of content being presented in some way, any tips on how to better grab the audience can't be a bad thing.

Generally though, approaching a conference like this is all about knowing what you can potentially take from it before you get here. As some of the participants (and David Secor) have pointed out, there is such a wealth of information and case studies it's tough to know where to start. 


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