Wednesday, July 27, 2016

"Advocacy" and "activism" are not dirty words - encouraging conservation scientists to better engage with the activist community

As mentioned in my previous blog, this week  I will be at the 4th International Marine Conservation Congress (#IMCC4), in St John's Newfoundland. This is the largest academic conference for marine conservation scientists, but unlike many academic conferences, much of the content of the meeting is intended to "make marine science matter" and to help scientists take there work from the ivory tower and to turn it into on the ground (or on the ocean) conservation.

There are many sections in the meeting on science communication and how to to transition from science to policy. One of my presentations at the meeting deals with one way to do this, but recruiting activist allies. For many scientists the terms advocacy and activism are dirty words, because they don't really know what they mean. They often associate activists with crazy anger people (what we call whacktivists) rather than the dedicated, impassioned people that make up the vast majority of the advocacy and activism community.

This presentation seeks to encourage scientists to form partnerships with activists to help better spread their conservation message.

Update: This presentation has now been published as an article in the IMCC4 proceedings: 

Available from:

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