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Pre-Congress Short Courses

All pre-congress short courses will be held either at the Universidad de Cartagena, the Hyatt Regency Hotel or the Spanish Cooperation Training Centre on Saturday 22 July and/or Sunday 23 July. Short course descriptions can be found below. All short courses require pre-booking during ICCB 2017 registration process and have limited capacity.

22-23 July 2017

22 July 2017

23 July 2017

 

National Geographic Sciencetelling™ Bootcamp

COURSE 1 - topics: public speaking, photography, videography, and social media

22 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Hyatt Regency Hotel
Max. capacity: 100 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

COURSE 2 - topics: public speaking, photography, videography, and social media

23 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Hyatt Regency Hotel
Max. capacity: 100 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Trainers: TBD

The National Geographic Sciencetelling™ Bootcamp is an intensive one-day training led by National Geographic Magazine photographers and producers. A series of four courses take participants through exercises that focus on storytelling in the scientific and conservation world. The series covers visual, spoken, and digital storytelling to maximize the impact of the work participants are doing.

In order to maximize the impact participants make in science and conservation, National Geographic is proposing to equip ICCB attendees with the skills required to tell their message clearly and effectively, on the platforms most utilized by the public and their peers. The National Geographic Sciencetelling™ Bootcamp will train scientists and conservations globally to tell their story and share their learnings broadly, leading to a better informed public that is more likely to support important management and policy decisions and positively influence public perception.

National Geographic is a global nonprofit membership organization driven by a passionate belief in the power of science, exploration and storytelling to change the world. We fund hundreds of research and conservation projects around the globe each year. With the support of our members and donors, we work to inspire, illuminate and teach through the grants we fund, award­ winning journalism, education initiatives, and more.

Use of Machine Learning in Conservation Moving beyond just Maxent and SDMs

22 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Flak Huettmann, University of Alaska

Machine learning and data mining present us with the state-of-the-art and as 'THE' quantitative analysis platform. It is specifically well suited for non-parametric applications and predictions to obtain a valid inference from complex data situations towards a more holistic perspective. However, in wildlife biology, conservation and policy applications the use of machine learning and data mining remain widely behind, often they got ignored. That's also true for their sciences. Maximum Entropy (Maxent) applications in Species Distribution Models (SDMs) and Geographic Information System (GIS) analysis have largely changed that, but machine learning offers us much more than just that. Machine learning and data mining apply to messy data as well as to gappy and tiny data, whereas ‘Big Data’ are the classic application though. Applications are 'huge' and not well fathomed, yet.

This short course will address applications such as citizen science project data (~no research design), GIS, as well as online data, open access and open source projects, and SDMs, as well as data pre-screening, new-generation DNA sequencing and eDNA applications. It is meant to inform and help quantitative analysts, as well as provide an overview of applications and continue a debate on ‘best practices’ while conservation management and policy increasingly divorces itself from frequency and bayesian statistics for inference.

 

A Primer to Causal Inference for Conservation Biologists

22 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Achaz von Hardenberg, University of Chester

Disentangling cause-effect relationships is a primary, understated, goal in ecology and conservation biology. Controlled and randomised experiments can be used to study ecological processes in the lab but are rarely applicable in studies on wild populations of conservation interest. With few exceptions field ecologist and conservation biologists thus renounce to make any inference about causality from their observational studies, resigning to the sobering precept - we all learnt during our undergraduate statistics courses - that correlation does not imply causation. Recently, however, new structural equation modelling (SEM) approaches have been developed, providing formal methods to specify and compare complex models of the relationships among ecological variables, thus allowing to disentangle direct and indirect causal effects when only observational data is available. Causal inference is potentially particularly useful in conservation biology as it allows to identify the causal pathways linking anthropogenic threats to specific ecological processes leading to population decline as well as to test the efficacy of conservation interventions.  This full-day short course will provide  the theoretical background of causal inference from observational studies and introduce the statistical “causal inference toolbox” available to ecologists and conservation biologists both within the frequentist and the Bayesian frameworks. Theory will  be alternated by tutorials using R and JAGS (a statistical language for the implementation of Bayesian MCMC models which can be accessed through R).  A basic knowledge of the R environment and of generalised linear models  is required to fully benefit of the course.

Participants should bring their own laptop.

 

Futures thinking in conservation: meeting the challenge of climate change

22 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Claudia Múnera-Roldán, Australian National University, Fenner School of Environment and Society; Nigel Dudley, Equilibrium; Michael Dunlop, CSIRO; Carolina Figueroa, Luc Hoffmann Institute; Oscar Guevara, WWF Colombia; Lorrae Van Kerkhoff, The Australian National University, Fenner School of Environment and Society; Carina Wyborn, Luc Hoffmann Institute

Tutors: Federico Davila, The Australian National University; Melissa Abud, WWF Colombia

Goal: Identify and present new ways of thinking about the future of conservation under situations of uncertainty

Conventional approaches to climate adaptation have tended to follow a learning, cycle pattern that is largely based on response to change as it happens, rather than anticipating future changes. Focusing on the challenge of anticipatory governance, we suggest that climate adaptation needs governance processes (decision-making, planning and management) that are prepared for future changes to the climate. We will focus on what we can do now to reshape our social, political and practical abilities to anticipate possible changes and respond to actual changes as they happen. We frame the “decision context” in the values, rules and knowledge that form the foundation from which we make decisions, plan, and manage for conservation. In the course we plan to explore how we transition from our traditional way of work in conservation, to identify how we will need to do conservation in the future through:

  • Presenting new ways of thinking about the future of conservation under climate change;
  • Presenting and working through practical tools that link present-day conservation policy, planning and management with the governance challenges posed by climate change;
  • Actively identifying key opportunities to ‘transition’ towards more climate smart  decision-making for conservation;
  • Working through policy, planning or management examples chosen by the group that identifies the specific decisions that can be taken today to invest in more climate smart outcomes for the future.

We expect that participants will be able to implement ideas of transition to climate changed futures through the management planning, actions, and decisions they are facing now in their work.

Participants should bring their own laptop.

 

Conservation Technology Think Tank: shaping the future of technology for conservation

22 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: José Lahoz-Monfort, University of Melbourne; Carla Archibald, University of Queensland; Ricardo Correia, Federal University of Alagoas; Gurutzeta Guillera-Arroita, University of Melbourne; Matthew McKown, Conservation Metrics, Inc.; Stuart Pimm, Duke University; Ted Schmitt, Vulcan; Achaz Von Hardenberg, University of Chester

Technology has great potential to revolutionize the way we collect data on species and habitats, and provide new tools to support conservation action. Although increasingly used in our discipline, there is still a huge opportunity gap that we the conservation community could tap into. We believe the time has come for conservation to move from being a technology consumer to become an innovation leader and to actively seek to design novel technologies and devices to suit our specific needs.

As part of the global effort to push this technology revolution, the SCB Conservation Technology Working Group (CTWG) is organizing the first international Think Tank on Conservation Technology. This one-day event, associated with ICCB2017, will gather like-minded conservation practitioners and researchers, and technologists engaged in conservation. Through different talks and workshops, you will have the chance to get the latest news, contribute, network, and hopefully kick-start new collaborations.

Program:

  • Morning session: the CTWG will provide an overview of where we stand and what the future could look like in terms of conservation technology, followed by a series of engaging invited talks that will set the scene for the day, providing an overlook of topics including “who is who in conservation technology”; “a roadmap for future technology development”; “open-source technology for conservation”;
  • Networking lunch break, with hands-on demos and workshops;
  • Afternoon session: your chance to contribute, with discussion workshops, including topics presented in the morning (current landscape of cons. tech; open-source technology) and others of general interest;
  • The day will conclude with a meeting of the CTWG, to discuss activities for the next year.

 

Using Service-Learning to Teach Conservation Issues for Educators Researchers and Practitioners

22 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Jessa Madosky, University of Tampa

This short course will focus on helping educators (at all levels), researchers, and practitioners develop service-learning collaborations focused on integrating conservation education and conservation action. Service-learning is a pedagogical tool that can help engage students and the public in learning about conservation science through hands-on projects that address conservation issues in their community. Service-learning can also provide practitioners and researchers with enhanced capacity to carry out conservation science or conservation action. This course will provide instruction in using service-learning pedagogy for both educators (at all levels) and practitioners interested in working with students or citizen scientists. Participants will leave the course with a potential collaborative project developed through small group discussion/workshopping and enhanced by feedback from experienced service-learning leaders. No experience or prior knowledge of service-learning is needed!

This course will cover general principles of service-learning, unique relevance of service-learning to conservation issues, case-studies of service-learning in conservation, discussion of pitfalls and challenges in service-learning, and interactive development of service-learning activities unique to each participant.

Graduate students, educators, researchers, practitioners, and anyone interested in learning more about service-learning pedagogy or increasing their or their organization's conservation capacity are welcome!

 

Wildlife Monitoring Solutions: Design Management and Analytical Tools for Camera Trap Monitoring

22 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Eileen Larney, Conservation International; Jorge Ahumada, Conservation International; Eric Fegraus, Conservation International

This course will present novel solutions for camera trap monitoring of terrestrial wildlife and provide training for new tools developed to simplify project design, data management, processing, and analysis. We provide information necessary to begin monitoring wildlife in protected areas or private lands and introduces experienced camera trappers to new tools to more easily manage, share, analyze and discover camera trap data and related datasets. The wildlife monitoring design and tools will come from our experience running the TEAM Network and Wildlife Insights. We will cover the Wildlife Picture Index (WPI), a key indicator approved by the Convention on Biological Diversity and explain how it can help achieve the World Commission on Protected Areas' (WCPA) objectives of more effectively managing protected areas and meet Aichi Targets 11 & 12. This course is designed for protected area managers, conservation practitioners, private land managers, students, scientists and government agencies responsible for resource and biodiversity management.

Full-Day Agenda:

  1. Wildlife Monitoring Using Camera Traps – Introduction to wildlife monitoring and types of questions, sampling designs, and power analysis;
  2. Camera Trap Data Management – Demonstration of a suite of new data management and analytical tools to manage and share camera trap data and complementary environmental data;
  3. Camera Trap Analytics: WPI and more – Presentation of various ways wildlife managers can analyze data and turn the data in scientific and/or actionable results;
  4. Break-out sessions: Participants may select whether to have deeper discussions and hands-on practical exercises on a) Wildlife Monitoring Planning or b) Camera Trap Data Management & Analytics Software (using their own data).

Participants are advised to bring their own laptop.

 

Science-policy interfaces: tools approaches to increase conservation impact through collaboration

22 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Melanie Ryan, Luc Hoffmann Institute / University of Cambridge; Paz Duran, Luc Hoffmann Institute Fellow

The goal of halting or reversing the decline in biodiversity globally has become a clear focus for many, with an increasing consideration of the role of science or knowledge in realising this ambition. This has led to growing calls for  ‘co-production’  or ‘transdisciplinary’ collaboration, coupled with a focus on working at and understanding the science-policy-practice interface (SPPI). Under this logic, ‘fixing’, or ‘strengthening’ the SPPI will lead to improved conservation outcomes. But what are people referring to when they talk about ‘the interface’? And how can knowledge of the interface be applied in the development of approaches and projects for conservation outcomes?

This short course  will provide attendees with theory, tools, and frameworks that can be applied in the context of conservation projects. Over the course of the day the organizers will draw on attendees’ experiences as well as case-studies from around the world, to enable them to,
Understand SPPI frameworks, concepts and approaches:

  • Identify approaches for doing science and conservation differently, including why collaboration and co-production matter;
  • Understand some of the enabling conditions to support successful interdisciplinary and cross-sector collaborative teams;
  • Apply Theory of Change process and concepts in impact focused research approaches, and;
  • Understand basic project management tools in settings of complex, transdisciplinary conservation projects.

This workshop invites participants from across science, policy and practice to join the interactive sessions and discussion on how we can collaboratively seek change in the world.

 

Introduction to behavior-centered design for solving conservation challenges

CANCELLED

 

Teaching Conservation Science: Are our students learning what we want them to learn?

22 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Suzanne Macey, American Museum of Natural History; Kimberley Landrigan, American Museum of Natural History

The Network of Conservation Educators and Practitioners (NCEP) of the American Museum of Natural History (New York) proposes to convene up to 25 post-secondary or adult educators in a 1-day short course to train in evidence-based pedagogical approaches, with a focus on assessing student learning. Sustaining biodiversity at multiple levels requires professionals equipped with skills to understand, engage with, and solve complex problems. How can we as educators make sure that our students—future scientists, practitioners, and decision-makers—are advancing their skills as well as their knowledge? In this short course, we focus on how we teach conservation and what students are actually learning, encouraging educators to approach teaching as they would approach research activities—in a rigorous, reflective, and evaluative manner.

NCEP experts (including investigators sharing results from NSF-funded research on education) will combine training in new teaching approaches with time for small groups to practice these techniques. Topics covered will include aligning assessment techniques to desired student learning outcomes, and strategies for developing and assessing professional skills in conservation students, such as critical thinking. We will also take time to bring participants together as both learners and knowledge-holders.

Course objectives are that participants will:

  1. Learn to apply a variety of scientific teaching techniques;
  2. Practice designing assessment approaches that develop and evaluate student professional skills (e.g. critical thinking);
  3. Explore new resources relevant to their own teaching practice, and discover opportunities for further collaboration;
  4. Connect to a community of practice to exchange experiences and lessons learned in evidence-based teaching.

Presentations and training will be in English; course materials will be available in English and Spanish.

 

CMA2 on line platform for the collaborative construction of marine knowledge of the Caribbean region

Cancelled

 

Using global datasets to calculate global regional and national indicators

22 July / 1 pm - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 1 coffee break

Organizers: Diego Juffe-Bignoli and Brian MacSharry, UNEP-World Conservation Monitoring Centre

The World Database on Protected Areas (WDPA) is a global dataset extensively used by the scientific community, private sector and international organisations for a wide range of purposes. It is the only global spatial database on terrestrial and marine protected areas including tabular data compiled from governments and other authoritative sources following a standardised process under a United Nations mandate that dates back to 1959. The WDPA is made available through www.protectedplanet.net and is managed by the UN Environment World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC) in collaboration with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

The WDPA dataset is spatially explicit and is used to calculate indicators that inform targets for the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and core indicators of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). This includes protected areas explicit indicators but more importantly the combination of protected areas data with other datasets such as Key Biodiversity Areas (IUCN, 2016), ecoregions, management effectivenes or connectivity.

This course will introduce the WDPA to participants who will learn how to use it for spatial analyses through a practical excercise. It will be divided in two parts:

  • Theory: An overview of the database. How it is compiled and managed, how it should be accessed and cited, how to work with it and other datasets to perform spatial analyses including some common misunderstandings and misuses of the data;
  • Practise: A hands-on data voluntary session where participants will calculate themselves some key international biodiversity indicators for one country and one region. Please bring your laptops with Quantum GIS or ArcGIS installed. Basic knowledge on any of these two software packages is needed for the practical part. 
     

Applied methods to influence human behavior for biodiversity conservation

23 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Tjerk Van Rooij, Rare and Diogo Verissimo, Rare / Johns Hopkins University

Conservation scientists face two major challenges: to communicate the results of their work in meaningful ways to stakeholders, policymakers and the public and to transform that information into relevant actions that improve conservation and societal well-being. These same challenges have been addressed in fields like public health and one lesson learned is that communication campaigns will have at best a small effect on behavior. Also, piling data in front of people rarely changes their minds nor ways; they need something emotional to buy into that motivates to support the solution by making it relatable. Behavioral adoption approaches such as social marketing have been shown to lead to more effective, sustainable and equitable solutions. This workshop focuses on the key principles of behavior adoption, emphasizing social marketing and how it can be applied to inspire community changes that conserve nature. Participants will be introduced to and learn to apply the latest advances in this field specifically to conservation issues: audience research techniques, segmentation, persona development, benefits exchange, effective messaging and branding.

Métodos aplicados para influir en el comportamiento humano para la conservación
Este taller, el cual brinda materiales en español, se centra en los principios del cambio de comportamiento humano, con énfasis en cómo la mercadotecnia social se puede aplicar para inspirar a las comunidades a conservar sus recursos naturales. Los participantes aprenderán a aplicar los últimos avances en dicho campo a temas de conservación: técnicas de investigación de audiencia, segmentación, intercambio de beneficios, mensajeo y estrategia de marca.

The course will be in English and material will also be available in Spanish.

 

A Global Standard for the Identification of Key Biodiversity Areas

23 July / 8 am - 12 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 1 coffee break

Organizers: Zoltan Waliczky, BirdLife International; Penny Langhammer, Arizona State University

The destruction of natural habitats remains a key driver of biodiversity loss. The need to pinpoint sites of particular importance for biodiversity to guide conservation efforts and inform development decisions has become ever more urgent. Responding to this need, IUCN undertook a multy-year global consultation process to consolidate the criteria and methodology for identifying Key Biodiversity Areas (KBAs). The resulting Global Standard for the Identification of Key Biodiversity Areas was launched at the 2016 World Conservation Congress in Hawaii. The quantitative, threshold-based criteria in the KBA Standard can be applied across taxonomic groups and ecosystems in all environments.

The aim of this session is to build understanding and capacity in the application of the KBA Standard including the criteria and thresholds, delineation guidelines, and required documentation for identifying sites as KBAs. The intended audience is conservation practitioners and scientists interested in applying the Standard or contributing their expertise to the identification or refinement of KBAs. Following a detailed introduction to the Standard, participants will break into small groups and work through practical examples, applying the criteria and thresholds to real datasets from multiple taxonomic groups and regions to determine whether particular sites would likely qualify as KBAs. Participants will use the delineation guidelines in the Standard to develop initial site boundaries.The groups will reconvene in plenary towards the end of the session to share their experiences, which will inform the development of detailed user guidelines and other training materials.

 

Developing essential grant and funding skills for conservation

23 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Rebecca Stirnemann, Samoan Conservation Society

Fundraising is critical for implementing conservation actions. However, in order to undertake conservation actions on the ground, you often need to obtain multiple successful follow-on grants and work with a variety of donors. This course teaches techniques on successfully gaining and maintaining funds. The course work uses hands-on exercises and real life examples to build skills in grant and budget writing. It also explores different non-financial options which can support conservation activities as well as communication techniques which will enhance your chances of gaining funds. The course will explore how social media can be used to build a profile to attract and maintain donor relationships. The knowledge gained during this program will enable conservation practitioners to be better equipped to achieve conservation goals by giving them skills to get required funds.

Format:

  1. Developing and selling your idea;
  2. Designing communication and building a project profile;
  3. Finding backers and partners;
  4. Finding the opportunities: Funding and non-funding options;
  5. Writing the grant or pitching an idea to a donor;
  6. Building a funding plan for the long-term.

Participants should bring their own laptop.

 

An Introduction to Resilience and Systems Thinking for Biodiversity Conservation

23 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Mike Jones, Swedish Biodiversity Centre; Olivier Chassot Labastrou, Tropical Science Center

Climate change and economic growth are driving ecosystem change throughout the world. Ecosystem management requires an understanding of ecosystems as social-ecological systems and of systemic change process. The CBD's 12 Principles for Ecosystem Approach are based on complexity science while project and policy interventions are often based on linear thinking, creating potential for a "disordered" approach to planning, policy and implementation. One of the underlying reasons for this situation is that complexity science is relatively new and many conservation professionals have not been trained in systems thinking. Consequently much conservation practice is based on the assumption of predictability that makes little allowance for the ecosystem properties of self-organization and emergence, and the unpredictable outcomes that can arise as a consequence of these properties.

This course will introduce participants to the basics of systems and resilience thinking for the management of ecosystems as social-ecological systems. The course components are:

  • a presentation of the rational for a systems approach to ecosystem management, based on the concept of “wicked” problems, and Snowden’s sense-making framework for understanding the relationships between different kinds of system and the management approaches needed for each;
  • a workgroup session in which participants learn about concepts of Holling’s panarchy by unpacking the jargon and relating it to their professional experience;
  • a workgroup session where participants undertake a preliminary resilience assessment based on a case, and;
  • a wrap up session to reflect on what has been learned, evaluate the course and consider what next.

 

Telemetry tracking technologies for wildlife management and conservation

23 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Robin Poches, Wildlife Veterinarians Association

Goal: To acquire enough tools and criteria to choose the telemetry system more suitable for your species, investigation and budget to obtain the most benefit and profit of it. Justification There are more than 20 commercial companies in the market of telemetry tracking technologies for wildlife, and due to the innovation and miniaturization of electronic components, nowadays there are so many options available (over 2500 transmitters models), each with its advantages and disadvantages. In order to choose the best and proper equipment, you have to consider the species, its average weight, its ecology, its behavior, the desired duration of investigation, transmitters dimensions and weight, the attachment method, the method to obtain signal/data, the cost of the equipment, frequencies range (permits due to different countries legislation), among others variables. At the end of the course you will have enough tools and criteria that will allow you to choose the telemetry system more adjustable to your species, investigation and budget to obtain the most benefit and profit of it.

Format and organizational structure: We will discuss the advantages and disadvantages, its operation, cost, attachment methods depending on species, with all the technologies available in the market, those are:

1. RFID ó PIT Tags;
2. Acoustic/sonar;
3. Geolocalitation by light/geo tags;
4. Armonic radar;
5. VHF;
6. Coded VHF;

7. PTT;
8. GPS Store-on-board/Data loggers;
9. GPS+UHF;
10. GPS+GPRS/GSM/SMS;
11. GPS+Satelital uplink.

This includes some countries legislation related to telecommunications permits on telemetry tracking technologies in itinerant frequencies as well as a short discussion about telemetry software analysis.

 

Hacking for Conservation

23 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Alex Dehgan, Conservation X Labs / Duke University

We are in the middle of a period of extraordinary change on the planet, a sixth great mass extinction. This is happening, even as we have been successful in creating new enclaves to protect species at exponential rates. These challenges will increase as billions emerge into middle class placing new demands on the planet, exacerbated by climate change.  While traditional conservation science can define the problems, it does not possess all the solutions. We need new  solutions, disciplines, and solvers engaged in conservation as powerful new tools for conservation exist in adjacent fields.

We may harness the power of exponential technologies, open innovation, and entrepreneurshp to transform the efficacy and scale of conservation efforts.  Technology has gained exponentially in processing power, memory capacity, number of sensors, pixel capacity, connectivity and storage.  We have seen a merger of biology and technology.  New principles of open innovation, design thinking, and mass collaboration seek to transform the conservation model.

This short course will offer participants a boot camp in frugal design, digital conservation, open innovation, and technology development and scaling for conservation.  It will also teach core skills for product development for conservation technology that can dramatically affect the speed, scale, and sustainability of such efforts. The project participants will be organized into teams, and work through proposing ideas, to considering design factors, to exposure to emerging technologies, to considering how to move from idea to innovation, and innovation to social enterprise and scale.

COURSE PROGRAM:

AM
Defining Problems
The Conservation Customer Model
Frugal Design Principles
PM
Exponential Technologies& Digital Development
Open Innovation, Mass Collaboration, and Crowdfunding
Getting to Scale

Participants should bring their own laptop.

 

Interdisciplinary Conservation Education: Engaging Students for Action

23 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Martha Groom, University of Washington; Carolina Gomez-Posada, University of Washington; Cristina Lopez-Gallego, Brown University; Ana Porzecanski, American Museum of Natural History

Conserving biological diversity requires diverse conservation practice and engagement. We need to bring in a much greater array of voices and life experiences into conservation efforts, and to diversify the nature of conservation practice itself. Currently, most conservation courses preach to the choir –people already engaged with the conservation mission. Conservation educators are interested in re-designing their courses to more effectively attract and retain a greater diversity of student participants, to develop student capacity for interdisciplinary conservation practice, and for communicating the value of conservation more widely.  In this short course, we will present an entry into effective, active, interdisciplinary teaching, and guide participants as they explore how to develop courses that attract a diversity of students and strengthen interdisciplinary conservation training. The course will be interactive, as participants share their ideas and teaching practices, while trying on new ideas and working through preliminary plans for course re-design. Four instructors will lead the group through a number of interactive exchanges, presentations, and hands-on activities, to share experiences in teaching conservation to a diverse student population, introduce the principles of course design and active teaching, and guide the participants in developing their own teaching materials to contribute to the Network of Conservation Educators and Practitioners open-access module collection (ncep.amnh.org).

This course will be offered in Spanish with English support.

 

Freshwater Health Index: applications and implementation

23 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Helen Regan, University of California Riverside; Derek Vollmer, Conservation International

Water security is the greatest natural-resource challenge facing humanity, with up to 80% of the global population and nearly two-thirds of freshwater habitats threatened with insufficient water quantity or quality. Against this background, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) call on countries to sustainably meet the fresh water demands of municipalities, agriculture, forestry, industry and natural ecosystems by 2030. To achieve the SDGs societies will need to embrace an eco-centric characterization of freshwater systems that emphasizes the links between stakeholders and governance, and the importance of deriving ecosystem services from naturally occurring aquatic infrastructure.

The Freshwater Health Index is a tool for conducting freshwater sustainability assessments; it consists of 3 linked components (Governance & Stakeholders, Ecosystem Vitality, Ecosystem Services) on which a range of indicators are based.  It aims to i) highlight the social-ecological nature of freshwater systems, ii) illuminate trade-offs in freshwater use, iii) facilitate transparent analysis and development of management plans under scenarios; and iv) provide an ecologically informed, scientific foundation for water policy. The Index has been applied to the Mekong River Basin, with plans for further testbeds. This short course will present the objectives and underpinnings of the Freshwater Health Index, describe the indicators that comprise it, and demonstrate evaluation of the Index through application to a real-world river basin. Participants will receive hands-on training through web-based exercises on indicator evaluation and interpretation in light of the SDGs. Topics include data sources, basin characterization, indicator calculation and interpretation, and scenario and trade-offs analysis.

Participants should bring their own laptop.

 

Animal Movement for Conservation: New Tools for Data Management and Visualization

23 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Eliezer Gurarie, University of Maryland; Silvia Alvarez Vargas, University of Maryland

Objective: Movement data are essential to understanding space use and response to environmental change of animals in the wild. Organizing, processing and visualizing movement data and relevant environmental covariates is the vital first step to exploring habitat use, which ultimately informs diverse conservation strategies. The goal of the course is to develop fundamental skills in managing and visualizing data with Movebank and R. Movebank provides a standardized and increasingly standard web-supported database for managing and sharing movement data, along with providing tools to "annotate" movement tracks with environmental covariates.  Various tools in R make high-level visualizations, including maps, animations, interactive graphics, and incorporation of environmental layers, easy to create and manipulate, an essential skill for effective illustration, communication, and analysis.

Organizational structure: The course will mix short lectures on concepts, theory and tools with extended practical lab sessions using the R programming language.

Participants should bring their own laptop.

 

An introduction to conservation social science theories and methods

23 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Alia Dietsch, Ohio State University; Rebecca Thomas, Slippery Rock University

Successful biodiversity conservation efforts require understanding of the natural environment as well as the needs and interests of people affected by those efforts. Recognition of a need for such understanding has generated increased interest in how the social sciences can apply to conservation. However, conservation practitioners often lack the extensive training and expertise necessary to assess “the human dimension” of the myriad conservation challenges we face. Similarly, practioners may need assistance with how to effectively integrate information collected through social science methods into conservation strategies. The purpose of this 2-day short course is to provide participants with an introductory training in both conservation social science theories and methods. Specifically, Day 1 will focus on concepts from key social science theories/disciplines, and Day 2 will focus on social science methods. The instructors will illustrate key concepts using examples from their experiences working with several state and federal government agencies as well as non-governmental organizations entrusted with managing natural resources. By the end of this course, participants will understand the role of social science theory and application of methods in a variety of situations, and will be able to (1) inventory the social aspects of a conservation challenge, (2) select a tailored methodological approach, and (3) identify ways in which social science results can inform both conservation actions and strategies for communicating with diverse audiences to generate behavior change.

Participants should bring their own laptop.

 

Designing Human-Centered Conservation Solutions

23 July / 9 am - 5 pm
Location: Universidad de Cartagena
Max. capacity: 25 participants maximum
Includes: 2 coffee breaks, 1 lunchbox (vegetarian)

Organizers: Shannon Randolph, San Diego Zoo Global; Jenny Glikman, San Diego Zoo Global

For successful conservation, there is a need to go beyond biological research. Indeed, beyond social science research. This short course will offer participants hands-on human-centered design (HCD) training to learn how to design locally suited interventions to persistent conservation challenges. HCD is a savvy tool used in Silicon Valley to empathize with users to design technologies and programs that directly respond to and meet needs of their key user population. In the conservation realm, HCD can be used to empathize deeply with natural resource users and ultimately design interventions that meet their needs and address the overuse or extraction of natural resources. It can equally be applied to climate change, wildlife trade, government capacity building or any problem. There are three main phases to the HCD process: empathy for users, rapid prototyping and testing of solutions, and iteration to design salient solutions based on user feedback. It shifts the focus from what do we want to conserve, and how can we do it? to what fundamental needs are met by people’s use of X natural resource, and how can we meet those needs in a way that reduces the over-exploitation of X resource?  You will be provided with examples and then work through assigned or proposed (by participants) stubborn conservation issue using human-centered design.

Expected outcomes:

  1. Learn a set of tools to engage people in conservation efforts;
  2. Practicum day using human-centered design to rapidly test innovative solutions for particular conservation problems;
  3. Awareness of how to use human-centered design in future work.