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ESA Communication & Engagement Logo, features a drop of water, along with the words: "Ecological Society of America", the letters C and E, and Communication and Engagement Section. Everything is in a medium-dark blue.

Welcome to the Communication & Engagement Section!

Through a number of activities, the Communication and Engagement (C&E) Section  works toward two central goals: 1) professionalizing science communication efforts within and beyond ESA and 2) providing resources and mentorship to ecologists interested in transitioning to careers in science communication or incorporating meaningful communication and engagement into their careers. Read more about these goals in a contributed piece we published on the ESA EcoTone blog.

See below for the section’s current activities. See the following links for additional section information:

  • Governance – Bylaws, History, Reports, etc.
  • Meet the Team – current and past officers and section founders
  • Terms of Use – conditions under which you may reuse, reproduce, and/or share our content

Current Activities

ESA annual meeting: Each year, we host a range of workshops, special sessions, informal social activities, and a business meeting. We maintain a list of SciComm, Engagement, and Inclusivity activities and sessions hosted by others at annual ESA meetings, too. Please follow this link for details about ways to propose sessions, get support on a proposal, and/or help with sessions and events the Communication & Engagement Section is planning. Follow the links for this year’s conference activities and past conference info.

#MySciComm blog series: This series on our blog highlights the diverse nature of science communication careers, opportunities, and pathways through an on-going series of guest posts. Contributors (top science communicators and sciommers in training from a wide range of fields) candidly share their personal and professional journeys. Each post ends with advice and resources for people looking to enter this vital, meaningful, and expanding field.

SciComm Resource of the Week blog series: This series on our blog reviews books and other scicomm resources, including websites, peer-reviewed literature, and more. Reviews provide unique content about resources that have direct or indirect relevance to the wide range of scicomm careers, approaches, and interests of Section members.

C&E & Broader Impacts Incentives: We are working toward funding and resources to further incentivize communication and engagement by ESA members, through fundraising to establish awards and an active leadership role in the Engage ESA initiative and on-going collaboration with ESA’s Public Affairs Committee and Office.

Long-range Planning

New partnerships: We continue planning collaborative activities with: Other ESA Sections (like Policy, Inclusive Ecology, Early Career, Student, and Education); ESA’s SEEDS, the ESA Committee on Diversity and Education, and ESA’s Public Affairs Committee; and external organizations and efforts such as AAAS, the Union of Concerned Scientists, Story Collider, the Earth Stewardship Initiative and ComSciCon. You’ll notice our efforts here in our #ESA2018 sessions – they involve partnerships with Policy, Inclusive Ecology, Education and other sections, as well as AAAS, UCS, and CSC. We have also identified an official liaison between our section and the Student Section. And, we now sit on the ESA Committee on Diversity and Education. Please be in touch with us if you have collaboration ideas and/or want to be part of these collaborative efforts.

Activities outside of annual conferences: We’ve begun brainstorming ideas for how our section could support members year-round. See the volunteer opportunities above for some of these ideas. But, we know we’ve just scratched the surface. If you have ideas, please connect with us! We’d love to consider how they may fit into the long-range planning grant we plan to submit this fall.

Governance: Following a productive discussion during our annual business meeting at ESA 2017, the officers have followed up on several directives proposed and voted on by members at that meeting. These include:

1. Addressing language in the bylaws that complicates section governance to increase efficiency and inclusivity.  These changes were submitted to/accepted by ESA in January 2018.

2. Extending the secretary’s term from 1 to 2 years to enhance continuity and increase section productivity. This change was submitted to/accepted by ESA in January 2018.

3. Establishing and strengthening collaborations with partners within and beyond ESA. See above.

4. Enhancing/expanding ESA members’ awareness of the Communication & Engagement Section to a) engage more people, b) provide resources to a broader swath of ESA, and c) recruit more members for our Section. We have begun this work by formally changing our name to the Communication and Engagement Section (formerly SciComm Section). This name is more inclusive of the range of C&E activities our members undertake, as well as being much easier to spot on the list of ESA sections you can join. We are also developing a SciComm Lit/Resource Review Series, which will launch on our blog in Spring 2018. And, we’d greatly appreciate your help with objectives a-c. So, please be in touch!