Upcoming webinar: From Aristotle to South Park: The ABT Framework as a New Tool for Science Communication.

Randy Olson

Tuesday, December 1, 2:00 p.m. EST

How to communicate complicated science and keep readers engaged? How to engage a broad audience totally disinterested in a scientific topic?  These is the expertise of Randy Olson. Randy Olson, as described in his webpage “was a humble, mild-mannered professor of marine biology at the University of New Hampshire. But then his brain sort of turned inside out and he shifted from scientist to artist. It happened in his first year as a professor. He hit a point where he realized that after fifteen years of telling stories OF science he had grown more interested in telling stories ABOUT science.

Despite his Harvard Ph.D., four years of post-doctoral research in Australia and Florida, and years of diving around the world from the Great Barrier Reef to Antarctica, he tossed it all in, resigned from his tenured professorship and moved to Hollywood to explore film as a medium for communicating science.”

Please join us and register here: http://ow.ly/URhyj


Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Coral Reproduction and Conservation


LOCATIONS: Hawaii and Australia


SALARY:  $60,000/yr USD for 2 yrs

The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in collaboration with Taronga Conservation Society Australia and the Australian Institute of Marine Science are seeking an enthusiastic Post-Doctoral Fellow to use reproductive sciences for coral conservation in Australia.  This fellowship will be part of a global multidisciplinary program to generate new knowledge and find solutions to high priority conservation problems focused on species reproductive fitness and survival of coral reefs.

JOB SUMMARY:  The Smithsonian Institution is seeking a post-doctoral fellow who will be responsible for conducting coral reproductive research and cryopreservation under the direction of Dr. Mary Hagedorn. Dr. Hagedorn will train the prospective candidate in cryopreservation methods for many reef species, including coral.

Responsibilities include:  develop and coordinate a reproductive research program for improving cryopreservation as applied to coral gametes and embryos, expand knowledge of coral reproductive biology and development, develop partnerships that will ensure research and conservation outcomes from the knowledge gained and material stored; train students and project partners in the required technology to increase capacity and impact of this work; analyze, present and publish research data in various forms; perform other related duties as assigned to support the mission of the international partnership.

The successful candidate will participate in on-site research both in Hawaii and Australia, training in cryopreservation and field research in Australia, they will coordinate with Australian partners and work to integrate cryopreservation and genome banking into a research program centered in Australia.

REQUIREMENTS:  a PhD in marine biology, cell biology or biophysics; high degree of motivation for scientific and conservation outcomes; multi-tasking; high degree of organization; ability to work well both in a group environment and individually; and ability to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing. The successful applicant must have a strong publication record, and a demonstrated ability to conduct and publish research independently and as part of a team.

TO APPLY: Please submit a letter of interest and a 2-page research proposal centered on the stated research themes by the closing date. Supply this to the contact person listed below.

CLOSING DATE: Dec 15, 2015 5 PM Hawaii Standard Time

CONTACT: Dr. Mary Hagedorn (hagedornm@si.edu

Shared from: https://taronga.org.au/content/post-doctoral-fellowship-coral-reproduction-and-conservation


IUCN is searching for National Program Coordinator (Brazil office)

IUCN is searching for National Program Coordinator (Brazil office)


The Country Representative is the head of IUCN’s operations in Brazil according to national legislation and under the legal status of the office in Brazil, fulfilling all the institutional IUCN policies, and has the overall responsibility of representing IUCN in Brazill and for the management of IUCN’s Programme in Brazil. S/he will be expected to work closely with the members – both governmental and non-governmental, and commission members to build relationships and collaborative arrangements with all appropriate partners.

The Country Representative will also be responsible to build a stronger organizational IUCN presence in Brazil leading to strengthening of the South America Region’s operations.


1. Nurture and maintain an excellent relationship with the Government of Brazil; and ensure that all national legal requirements are valid at any given time;
2. Provide membership support and services including coordination, facilitation and support to the IUCN Brazil National Committee;
3. Actively work towards enhancing IUCN membership in Brazil;
4. Ensure effective relationships are developed, maintained and strengthened between IUCN, governmental, non-governmental, civil society, donors, private sector and other stakeholders, as well as with the international organisations based in Brazil;
5. Promote IUCN as the institution that assists Brazil members and other partners in building bridges with the Government, IUCN members and other institutions elsewhere in the world and of providing a neutral platform for debate;
6. Facilitate IUCN membership and Commissions network meetings that link the IUCN constituency in Brazil to the secretariat programmes and regional and global governance;
7. Ensure that the IUCN programme in the country is in alignment with IUCN’s global and regional priorities as well as to the national priorities;
8. Provide leadership in programme development aligned with the ‘One Programme’ approach and take responsibility for ensuring that funding for the programme is secured, and ensure that associated programme and project documentation is produced for fund-raising purposes. This will include supervision of country-specific project development activities and contribution to the development of integrated inter-country, regional and transboundary projects where and when appropriate;
9. Ensure that the IUCN Brazill Programme achieves scientific and technical integration with the Regional Programme Support Unit and the Natural Resources Group and with other country programmes in support of national and regional programme objectives;
10. Provide overall direction to and ensure efficient and cost effective implementation, coordination, and monitoring of IUCN’s programme in Brazil and the delivery of the expected results which contribute to the achievement of the South America Regional component of the IUCN Intersessional Programme; including the establishment of programme, financial, and administrative reporting schedules as required by relevant agreements and partners, and ensuring that these reporting schedules are adhered to;
11. Ensure that information and learning at the local level is utilized to impact on national policy and is fed into IUCN’s Knowledge Management systems to enable impacts on regional and global policies; and make regional and global knowledge available to support and inform national and local debate and decision making;
12. Maintain regular contacts with Members and other partners, with a view to exploring new areas of interest for the IUCN Programme and ensure effective coordination of all IUCN Secretariat contacts with all partners;
13. Effectively deploy the administrative, financial and technical resources available to the IUCN Secretariat Programme in Brazil, including the administration of the “Associação UICN”, according to its statutes and bylaws and ensure that these are used in conformity with relevant IUCN norms and standards, contributing to and benefiting from the integrated finance and technical resource model of the region, and provide or make available such support in this respect to IUCN units as may be necessary;
14. Ensure that regular support and inputs are provided to IUCN staff in Brazil through regular on-going performance management with a view to building up a diverse and integrated team of IUCN personnel in the country which is viewed and views itself as a component of a wider South America regional team;
15. Establish regular management ,administrative and programme reporting linkages to IUCN South America Regional Office in Ecuador, and with other IUCN programmes and administrative units or offices as required;
16. Lead in change management in the Country Office as and when new regional structures and systems adjustments are put in place to group or re-group Country Offices;
17. Provide support to the Regional Director on developing and implementing regional initiatives, as and when needed; and
18. Carry out any other relevant tasks as required by, and mutually agreed with, the line manager.

Please Note: The above Terms of Reference contain the main responsibilities and duties of this position. However in an ever evolving organization such as IUCN staff members are expected to show flexibility in their approach to work and be willing to undertake other tasks that are reasonably allocated to them but which are not part of their regular TORs.


• A Master’s Degree in natural resources management, sustainable development or a similar field. Doctorate degree is highly desirable.

• At least 10 years of progressive experience in senior management roles within similar organisations in the geographical area of the office and experience working with international and multilateral organizations.

• A proven track record of managing adaptive organisations and handling complex operations and diverse teams with a special focus on strategic programme planning and project development.

• Proven programme and project development and fundraising skills. Extensive knowledge and experience with donor-funded programmes and projects.

• Excellent managerial, analytical, interpersonal, negotiating and team building skills. Demonstrable experience leading teams, providing feedback and guidance, and managing performance against agreed expected, measurable results.

• Knowledge of key conservation & development issues, government and donor networks in Brazil.

• Ability to work under pressure and to deal tactfully with sensitive political issues including experience of handling a cross-cultural work force in a multi cultural, multi disciplinary setting.

• Strong cultural awareness and sensitivity to social equity, such as gender and racial issues.

• Fluency in written and spoken Portuguese, English and Spanish, computer literacy and willingness to travel frequently.


Applicants are requested to apply online through the HR Management System, by opening the vacancy announcement and pressing the “Apply” button: https://hrms.iucn.org/iresy/index.cfm?event=vac.show&vacId=1201&lang=en

Applicants will be asked to create an account and submit their profile information. Applications will not be accepted after the closing date. The vacancy closes at midnight, Swiss time (GMT+1 / GMT+2 during Daylight Saving Time, DST).

Other job opportunities are published in the IUCN website: http://www.iucn.org/involved/jobs/

Two year Fellowship based at the Australian National University, Canberra, Australia (preference given to Latin American applicants)

Two year Fellowship based at the Australian National University, Canberra, Australia (open to non-OECD applicants only, preference given to Latin American applicants)

Level: Academic (B)
Salary: AU$ 91,541 – AU$ 104,254 per annum
Deadline: 17 Dec 2015 11:55:00 PM Aus. Eastern Standard Time

This position is part of a collaboration between the Fenner School of Environment and Society (CBME, ANU), the Luc Hoffmann Institute, the World Wildlife Fund Colombia, and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), titled ‘Conservation Futures’. The Conservation Futures project aims to develop new frameworks and processes that enable individuals and organisations to improve their strategic planning specifically with regard to how they anticipate and respond to climate change. It focuses on the ways that people create and use knowledge; the values and preferences supported by different approaches or options; and the rules that enable conservation actors (policy makers, managers, practitioners and landholders) to plan and act now for future change.

Details at: http://jobs.anu.edu.au/…/507196/luc-hoffman-institute-fellow

Renata Leite Pitman, our new ATBC Editor of Internet Communications

We are happy to announce that Renata Leite Pitman, a Research Associate with the Center for Tropical Conservation at Duke University and the Keller Science Action Center at the Field Museum, has now assumed the role of Internet Communications Editor for ATBC. In addition to enhancing and maintaining the ATBC website, she will also assist with communications via the ATBC Facebook page and the Tropical Biology and Conservation Forum.

Renata is a Wildlife Veterinarian (DVM 1993) with a Masters in Forest Science. She has been working since 1989 in integrating fauna and flora research. Since 1994, she has become actively involved in restoring Atlantic Forest vegetation in areas of southern Brazil that were severely degraded by mining activities. There she owns a reserve with a 20 year-old restoration project, where she founded and directs the Center for Atlantic Forest Conservation. Her work with the Center for Tropical Conservation at Duke University includes coordination of research in Peru, Ecuador and Brazil, fundraising and website management. At the Field Museum, she helps on field guides production. Renata was born in São Paulo, Brazil. She currently resides in Chicago with her husband Nigel and two children.

Please help Renata to enhance ATBC’s Internet presence. Her main targets will be to engage to the ATBC’s web as many research stations in the tropics as possible and make the ATCB webpage a reference in tools for tropical biology and conservation. If you want to see the research station where you work featured at the ATBC web pages, please post a picture that characterizes your station into our Facebook page with the hashtag #TropicalBiologyResearchStation, and with a link to your station page if possible. She is soliciting broad input from ATBC members on tools for tropical biology and conservation research, upcoming grants, conferences, and training opportunities. Please post your ideas or materials in our Facebook page with the hashtags: #TropicalBiologyTools, #TropicalBiologyGrants, #TropicalBiologyConferences, #TropicalBiologyTraining.

Stay tuned and check the ATBC Website frequently for updates!

Tropically yours,
Robin Chazdon
Executive Director


ATBC Newsletter – September 2015

Fall Newsletter                                                                                   September 2015

Dear ATBC family,

The Annual ATBC Meeting in Honolulu filled us all with enthusiasm and excitement about moving forward. Congratulations to the new Honorary Fellows: Dieter Mueller-Dombois and J. Jack Ewel; Gentry Award Winners: Gaku Amada, Anat Belasen, and Sarah Jane Wilson; Baccardi Award Winner Haldre Rogers; and Carolyn Delevich, who received the New Phytologist Best Poster Prize in Plant Biology Read more here.

Planning has begun for the 2016 Annual Meeting, 19-23 June in Montpellier and the call for symposia is open until 1 November. The theme of the meeting is: Tropical Ecology and Society: Reconciling Conservation and Sustainable Use of Biodiversity.

We are accepting nominations for President-elect and four new Councilors until 15 October. If you are interested in serving on Council or would like to nominate another candidate (with their permission), please email Nominations Committee Chair Susan Laurance Your email should include the name of the person you are nominating plus their complete contact information.

Julieta Benitez-Malvido has begun her term as Secretary. You will soon be receiving membership renewals for 2016 from Wiley. Please renew early!

If you have problems with renewing your membership, please contact Julieta for assistance.

We have adopted a new Strategic Plan for 2015-2020 with five strategic foci:

  • Support the development of tropical biology and related interdisciplinary scientific approaches.
  • Communicate tropical biological science among the scientific and conservation community.
  • Foster the application of science in conservation policy and management action.
  • Grow the society by serving the needs and interests of the tropical biology research community.
  • Build organizational capacity and financial stability.

These points will guide future activities and fund-raising efforts.

Here are some other exciting developments:

  • We established a new Finance Committee to implement a more environmental and social sound investment portfolio for ATBC, establish an Endowment Fund, and coordinate with ATBC’s Fundraising committee
  • The Africa-Indian Ocean Chapter is getting off the ground! Orou Gaoue will be the Chair, and Onja Razafindratsima will serve as a secretary
  • We are developing a new membership structure in consultation with Wiley that breaks down economic barriers for membership and will create a more inclusive and engaged professional society
  • We are searching for a new webmaster. If you are interested, please contact search committee chair Norbert Cordeiro
  • The Conservation Committee released a new resolution in support of effective biodiversity security measures in the state of Hawai’i
  • A new data archiving policy is being developed for Biotropica.

Stay tuned and check the ATBC Website frequently for updates!

Tropically yours,
Robin Chazdon
Executive Director

(Download PDF: Fall 2015 ATBC Newsletter)

ATBC2016 : Call for Symposia and Sessions

ATBC2016 : Tropical Ecology and SocietyIn a rapidly changing world where untouched ecosystems are vanishing and biodiversity will have to be maintained in human-modified and sometimes novel environments, reconciling conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity in the tropics has become a critical issue. The 53rd ATBC Annual Meeting focuses on this issue and aims to gather scientists from many different disciplines to exchange ideas, concepts and approaches, as well as to elaborate and promote innovations for the conservation of tropical ecosystems in the decades to come.

The call for symposia is now opened !

The submission will be available until 1st November, 2015.

Proposals of symposia are encouraged to address the meeting theme if appropriate. Subjects of broad interest to tropical biology and conservation will also be considered for sessions.

Please, review the symposia guidelines before your submission.

Thank you in advance for your involvment !

While waiting for your coming in Montpellier in 2016, feel free to contact us in order to become a partner or for any other question. Find all information Here

We look forward to seeing you in Montpellier. This meeting provides delegates with the opportunity to collaborate with researchers and meet with key speakers and industry leaders — participation is encouraged for anyone with a passion for tropical biology and conservation.

The Organizers : Plinio Sist (CIRAD), Stéphanie Carrière (IRD-GRED), Pia Parolin (INRA-Univ Hamburg) and Pierre-Michel Forget (MNHN-CNRS)

When we get trapped in conservation conflicts

Concerning news spread rapidly through social media on Friday 25th of September – more than 30 people, including well known tropical biologist John Terborgh, had been ‘kidnapped’ by a group of local protesters in Manú National Park, Peru.

John Terborgh, Royal Belum State Park, northern Malaysia.

Field trip to Royal Belum State Park, northern Malaysia. From left to right: John Terborgh, Lisa Davenport, Kim McConkey, Ahimsa Campos-Arceiz, and Lisa Ong. © Reserved.

The abduction took place on the 22nd of September and two days later, John and the other hostages had been released. Apparently there was no harassment nor use of violence and all the hostages are well (except for a person with a dislocated shoulder). John is now (26th September) on his way home, where he will meet his wife before the end of the week.

News of innocent people being retained against their will are always unsettling. In this case, John’s high academic profile and the fact that he is a such a respected and liked member of the ATBC community added a great deal of attention and concern to a story that otherwise might have passed unnoticed internationally.

I found interesting how netizens discussed on the social media whether it was or not appropriate to call the protesters ‘terrorists’. The motivations behind the protest were not clear at the time, but there were suggestions that the local community was ‘fighting against the construction of a road through their lands’. Basically, that they were ‘fighting for conservation’.

Reports coming from Peru now suggest rather the opposite – that the local communities were actually protesting to support the construction of a road that would connect Nuevo Eden with Boca Manu. This road is a project of the regional government that has been stopped due to a complaint from Peru’s National Protected Natural Areas Service (SENANP). SENANP is concerned that the proposed road would lead to illegal deforestation and mining activities inside Manú. Additional reports from the area indicate that the park rangers abandoned their working duties in advance of the protest, to avoid confrontations with the local communities.

Several thoughts come to (my*) mind in the middle of this story. First, local communities are often not the conservation heroes many people like to think they are. It is perfectly understandable for many of these communities to have interest that come in conflict with conservation. That is where proper (sensitive and sensible) policies and regulations come in place.

Second, law enforcement is extremely difficult in contexts where confrontation is culturally and socially very sensitive. This is the case in many remote protected areas. It doesn’t matter how sensitive and sensible policies and laws are, if they cannot be enforced.

And, finally, that we – researchers – are one more of the stakeholder groups involved in conservation and increasingly will find ourselves trapped in conservation conflicts. We cannot afford to claim that we just want to remain neutral while conducting our research. When in the name of conservation we recommend to gazette a protected area or to stop the exploitation of an endangered species, we are crossing our way with the interests of other stakeholders, sometimes large corporations sometimes local communities.

I’m really glad to hear that John is well. When I shared the news of his ‘kidnapping’ with my students, one of them wrote back saying ‘the protesters might have felt they abducted the wrong person. John probably earned the protesters respect during the period chatting with them’. My student has spent time chatting with John in the field, and he obviously earned a great deal of her respect. And mine.

Ahimsa Campos-Arceiz
Kuala Lumpur, 26 Sep 2015

* Note: these are exclusively my views. I’m not representing any organization nor anyone else.












Assistant, Associate or Full Scientist/Curator

Do you have a passion for cutting-edge biodiversity science and applying it to global sustainability challenges?

The California Academy of Sciences seeks to fill several endowed positions with Ph.D.-level scientists who do outstanding biodiversity / ecological science, focus on broader science communication & engagement, care about increasing diversity in science, connect their work to real-world sustainability outcomes, and want to change the world.

Under new leadership, the Academy is aggressively investing in groundbreaking scientific research & discovery, and hiring new scientists who will help us pursue our mission to “Explore, Explain and Sustain Life” on Earth. We are eagerly seeking up-and-coming scientific leaders with expertise in biodiversity, ecology & evolution, and global environmental change. At the Academy, scientists and curators are appointed in hard-money, endowed positions within our Institute for Biodiversity Science and Sustainability (IBSS), and are expected to embrace scientific exploration, science communication & engagement, increasing diversity, and making a real difference in environmental sustainability.

Founded in 1853, the Academy offers a unique and powerful setting to conduct scientific research and engagement. Housed in its Double LEED Platinum building in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, the Academy combines a world-class museum, research institute, and educational center all under one roof. Facilities include outstanding research collections (with almost 46 million specimens); a world-leading digital planetarium / visualization studio; premiere aquarium facilities with nearly 40,000 living animals and unique culturing facilities; indoor rainforest, coral reef, and California coast habitats; numerous exhibits and educational facilities; and advanced research laboratories for work in genomics, specimen preparation, digitization, computer modeling, scientific visualization, etc. The Academy also recently acquired iNaturalist, a platform that engages global observers in high-quality data collection for citizen science. Furthermore, the Academy includes outstanding research and education staff who integrate science with cutting-edge virtual and in-person educational programming.

The new scientist “cluster hires” will join nearly 100 other staff and students in IBSS, and help us address some of the world’s most pressing problems related to biodiversity conservation, ecosystem health, global environmental change, and sustainability – and communicate it to stakeholders and a diverse public.

The open positions are broad, and we are searching in many areas of biodiversity science and related fields. The Academy especially seeks experts in coral reef biology, tropical rain forests, the ecology of California, and the impacts of global change on biodiversity, as well as candidates with interests in marine mammals and amphibian decline. We seek candidates with skills in “big data”, modeling, GIS, visualization, genomics, and innovative methods for field- and collections-based research. Candidates who connect their work to larger sustainability challenges are of special interest. Candidates must also show leadership in science communication and engagement, as well as an interest in increasing diversity in science.

Candidates will be reviewed until all positions are filled; for full consideration, send applications by November 1, 2015. Interviews will be held early in 2016; starting dates are negotiable. Suitable candidates must have a doctorate in a relevant field; postdoctoral experience or equivalent training; enthusiasm for communicating science to broad audiences; commitment to expanding diversity in science; and a passion to pursue research with sustainability outcomes.

A complete application consists of the following which you will be asked to upload: 
1. Cover letter; 2. Curriculum vitae; 3. Three, two-page vision statements (one outlines your scientific goals, another your education & engagement goals, and lastly the sustainability outcomes of your research); 4. Four publications (two technical and two examples of public/media outreach); 5. Two letters of reference plus a list of 3-5 additional contacts.

Additional questions? Contact the Chief of IBSS, Dr. Meg Lowman (mlowman@calacademy.org).

The California Academy of Sciences is an Equal Opportunity Employer and committed to ensuring that all employees and applicants receive equal consideration and treatment, regardless of race, color, creed, gender (including gender identity or gender expression), religion, marital or domestic partner status, age, national origin or ancestry, physical, mental or medical disability, sex, sexual orientation, citizenship, military service status, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by state or federal law or local ordinance.


The California Academy of Sciences will consider for employment all qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the requirements of the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance (SF Police Code, Article 49).

Apply here: http://calacademy.snaphire.com/jobdetails?ajid=vNXB8