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Monday, June 18, 2012

Evolution Ottawa July 6-10 2012

I'll be going to this meeting next month. Let me know if you'll be there and we can arrange to meet for lunch, dinner, beer, or coffee. We'll definitely be doing a poutine run into Quebec and a walk to Byward Market to get beaver tails.

This is the year Canada celebrates it's victory over the USA in the war of 1812. You can thrill to the spectacle of the changing of the guards on Parliament Hill and see the fearsome redcoats up close. Americans (the losers) are welcome! :-)
Welcome to the site of the First Joint Congress on Evolutionary Biology (aka ‘Evolution 2012’), to be held in Ottawa, Canada’s capital city. This landmark event will bring together five of the world’s largest academic societies devoted to the study of ecology and evolutionary biology: the American Society of Naturalists (ASN), the Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution (CSEE) the European Society for Evolutionary Biology (ESEB), the Society for the Study of Evolution (SSE), and the Society of Systematic Biologists (SSB). This event merges the traditional ‘Evolution’ meeting, the joint annual meeting of the ASN, SSE and SSB, with both its European and Canadian counterparts (the biennial ESEB congress and annual CSEE meeting). This will be the first time that these five societies have met together, creating a truly international event that spans the fields of ecology and evolution. The meeting will be the premier showcase in 2012 for the presentation and discussion among peers of the latest, leading-edge research in ecology and evolution, and will also be an important forum for outreach and education.
I'll also be attending two workshops on Friday July 6th.
Science educators in the Ottawa area are invited to join evolutionary biologists and other science educators at the First Joint Congress on Evolutionary Biology for “EVO 101”, a one day workshop on evolution and using evolutionary data in the classroom. Come learn about exciting research in the field of evolution and attend sessions featuring hands-on activities designed to facilitate the integration of ecological and evolutionary data into your curriculum.

Workshop to include: Talks by scientists and educators and hands-on activities demonstrating effective and fun ways to teach evolution; FREE teaching resources and other give-aways for participants; an opportunity to meet and chat with professional evolutionary biologists who both study and teach evolution; attendance at the Gould Award Lecture, given by the recipient of the Stephen Jay Gould Prize, awarded annually by the Society for the Study of Evolution to recognize individuals whose sustained and exemplary efforts have advanced public understanding of evolutionary science and its importance in biology, education, and everyday life in the spirit of Stephen Jay Gould.
Communicating Science to Society
Whether you need to learn the basics or fine tune the dark art of science communication, this half day workshop is for you. Come for insider advice from a group of North America’s top science communicators. The session will open with evolutionary ecologist Tom Sherratt talking about his experience with the media and why he does it. The panellists will introduce an area of journalism and discuss their experiences with interviewing researchers. Then the panel discussion will expand on some of the challenges scientists face and the practical communication solutions. Finally a break-out session will allow for an interactive round table letting participants choose a topic of particular interest (how to give an interview, how to pitch a science book to a publisher, 101 for scientists using social media). The workshop will conclude with a networking session between fellow science communicators and the panellists. By the end, delegates can expect to have built a strategy as to how to effectively approach and handle different media opportunities (such as TV, radio, print & social media) and also leave with a handout of useful tips.

Hosts: Peter Calamai (Adjunct Research Professor, Carleton University School of Journalism and Communication; founding member of the Canadian Science Writers' Association) and Richard Webster (Science & Communications Officer for Row to the Pole and Biology Ph.D. candidate, Carleton University)

  • Carl Zimmer (NYT columnist & author of A Planet of Viruses and many other best sellers)
  • Penny Park (Producer of CBC’s Quirks & Quarks and Discovery Channel’s The Daily Planet. Now Executive Director of the Science Media Centre of Canada)
  • Elizabeth Howell Ottawa Business Journal, freelance science journalist and social media expert
  • Tim Lougheed Freelance science journalist
  • Tom Sherratt Evolutionary ecologist, Carleton University
This second workshop is unusual because there's an actual scientist presenting! :-)


  1. See you there. I'm speaking at EVO 101.

  2. Beaver tails and poutine I can very easily do without. Anyone up for some self-indulgent gourmet dining? I bet there's lots in Ottawa and Hull.

    1. I suppose it's changed since (for the better) but in the mid-1980s I was at a meeting in Ottawa and the local restaurants were unimpressive. Until you walked across the bridge to Hull. which is in Quebec and is largely Francophone -- and the quality of the cuisine there was substantially better.

  3. Well, some of us live in Ottawa, and would love to get together sometime over the weekend. And don't forget David Quammen's talk, open to the public, on Friday evening.

  4. I'll be there as well. Looking forward to the conference.

  5. I should be there for the whole meeting, arriving late Friday, speaking on Saturday and fairly available after that.

  6. I recommend you try Brother's Beer Bistro in the Market area. Its really new, a few weeks. I just returned form a visit to Ottawa last week. They have a few nice beers.

  7. I'll be there. First Evolution meeting in a couple of years, and first trip to Ottawa ever. Not giving a talk, though. I'd be interested in clues on food, but hold the poutine. See you at the opening reception?