From Oceans to Mountains: It’s All About Ecology… Communication!

An opportunity to build your multimedia toolkit

Beyond the Written Word: Advancing ecology communication through multimedia. Credit, Bethann Merkle.

It’s that time of the year – time to get your brain into ESA Annual Meeting Mode.

You’re furiously finishing that data analysis in prep for a talk or poster.

You’re checking out the Conference Program and getting your schedule in order.

You’re registering for the meeting and arranging meet-ups with colleagues and collaborators.

How about adding science communication to your meeting preparations? It’s as simple as signing up for Workshop 15: Beyond the written word – advancing ecology communication through multimedia.

Inspired by the rallying call at last year’s Annual Meeting to better connect our science to society, we’ve organized a hands-on workshop for attendees of this year’s Annual Meeting. As we look towards ESA’s Centennial, we want to move the conversation forward from talking about why communicating our science is important to improving how we actually do it.

Our workshop targets ecologists, educators, and communicators – those looking to expand their toolbox, and those curious to test the waters of science communication for the first time.

During the five-hour workshop on Sunday, August 10, you’ll get a crash course in scientific storytelling using audio, video, text, photography, and illustration from a talented team of ecologist-communicators. We will first orient you to our favorite tools, software and apps – most of which you already carry around in your pocket or could download for free. Then, we’ll lead you through hands-on exercises to gain confidence and expertise in each media.

Here’s the most exciting part of the workshop: you’ll form a small team with workshop presenters and other participants to plan and produce a multimedia project covering some aspect of the science at the meeting. We’ll even provide a platform for you to share these multimedia pieces with the world: a special series published right here on the EcoTone blog.

We’re not looking for journalistic masterpieces, so everyone is welcome. We’re empowering ecologists to better communicate the stories of our science (including stories about the people doing the science) in creative, compelling and innovative ways. We will give you the tools – and confidence – to engage, communicate, and create!

So what are you waiting for? Include science communication in your meeting preparations and sign up for Workshop 15: Beyond the written word – advancing ecology communication through multimedia today!

Chris Creese, Clarisse Hart, Molly Mehling, Holly Menninger, and Bethann Merkle are the organizers, in alphabetical order, of the upcoming ESA workshop: Beyond the written word – advancing ecology communication through multimedia. This is their first in a series of guest posts about science communication in ecology. They encourage you to join the conversation about science communication at ESA’s 2014 Annual Meeting by following the hashtags #scicomm and #ESA2014.