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SFS Annual Meeting

Tuesday, May 21, 2019
11:00 - 12:30

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11:00 - 11:15: / 254 B SPLASH INTO PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT: INTEGRATING COMMUNITY INTO EXISTING TEACHING AND RESEARCH EFFORTS

5/21/2019  |   11:00 - 11:15   |  254 B

SPLASH INTO PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT: INTEGRATING COMMUNITY INTO EXISTING TEACHING AND RESEARCH EFFORTS A science-literate public is integral to society; however, the science-society relationship is complex. The traditional approach of increasing public understanding can lead to tension and be insufficient. Through public engagement, intentional and meaningful interactions, we can move beyond providing knowledge and towards interactive dialogue and exchange. The result can be a wider range of stakeholder involvement making the science more impactful and relevant to society. Public engagement can take many forms including policy deliberation, public dialogue, and knowledge co-production. Here I provide three examples of incorporating public engagement into existing teaching and research responsibilities: 1) service learning volunteer model, 2) service learning project model, and 3) long-term student research model. Service learning models can be applied to courses of varying level and can range in scope. Pairing students with community organizations results in students gaining knowledge, experience, and networking opportunities, while community partners receive useful products and time with future employees. Conducting research with community partners can result in location-relevant research questions and ongoing student research opportunities. The benefits of incorporating public engagement into existing teaching and research efforts include new funding options, more impactful research, and enhanced student learning.

Kristy Hopfensperger (Primary Presenter/Author), Northern Kentucky University, hopfenspek1@nku.edu;


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11:15 - 11:30: / 254 B FISHBOOK: ENGAGING AUDIENCES THROUGH THE USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA

5/21/2019  |   11:15 - 11:30   |  254 B

FISHBOOK: ENGAGING AUDIENCES THROUGH THE USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA Individuals increasingly turn to social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter as sources of information, including for news about science and the environment. Though posting on social media may be thought of as yelling into the “void”, individual researchers can use a variety of techniques to engage with audiences in meaningful and productive discussion about complex environmental topics. To illustrate, I present a case study of a popular science communication event I created on Twitter: #25DaysofFishmas. #25DaysofFishmas began as a lighthearted way to showcase the diversity of fish species in the Laurentian Great Lakes and has evolved into an annual forum to discuss connections between humans and the aquatic environment. Social media, particularly Twitter, is not simply a tool for scientists to broadcast their research to audiences, but a platform to engage and affect personal responses towards science. Like other tools used in stakeholder engagement, time must be invested to build relationships and trust before social media platforms can be effective avenues of audience engagement.

Katherine O'Reilly (Primary Presenter/Author), Department of Biological Sciences, University of Notre Dame, koreill2@nd.edu;


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11:30 - 11:45: / 254 B LEARNING TO LISTEN: TRANSLATIONAL WATER MANAGEMENT AND SCIENCE IN THE UPPER FLINT RIVER, GEORGIA

5/21/2019  |   11:30 - 11:45   |  254 B

LEARNING TO LISTEN: TRANSLATIONAL WATER MANAGEMENT AND SCIENCE IN THE UPPER FLINT RIVER, GEORGIA The Flint River originates in metro Atlanta (GA), a fast-growing exurban area in the southeastern U.S. Unusually low growing-season flows reported by stakeholders, and subsequently corroborated with hydrologic analysis, led American Rivers and Flint Riverkeeper to publish reports outlining concerns and potential responses to restore flows, which ultimately catalyzed the formation of the Upper Flint River Working Group. This group is a collection of water utilities, conservation non-profits, scientists, technical experts, and others seeking to achieve drought resilience and water security. We share how a small, diverse group who agreed that the Flint could be better managed developed a critical common ground from which tangible management actions could emerge. We focus on describing how a strong partnership helped us to create a framework for addressing group priorities, including enhancing return flows, green infrastructure, basin-wide communications during drought, land protection, re-regulation of reservoir releases, and addressing knowledge gaps. We found that ‘translational ecology’ is more than communicating science; it involves establishing trust through dialog and respectful collaborative engagement, developing a shared purpose and vocabulary, engaging in multi-way learning, and patience.

Stephen Golladay (Primary Presenter/Author), The Jones Center at Ichauway, steve.golladay@jonesctr.org;


Ben Emanuel (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), American Rivers, bemanuel@americanrivers.org;


Gordon Rogers (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Flint Riverkeeper, gordon@flintriverkeeper.org;


Laura Craig (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), American Rivers, lcraig@americanrivers.org;


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11:45 - 12:00: / 254 B PUBLIC EXHIBITS HIGHLIGHT IMPORTANCE AND COOL FACTOR OF ALGAE: GETTING BEYOND THE PERCEPTION OF GREEN GOOP

5/21/2019  |   11:45 - 12:00   |  254 B

PUBLIC EXHIBITS HIGHLIGHT IMPORTANCE AND COOL FACTOR OF ALGAE: GETTING BEYOND THE PERCEPTION OF GREEN GOOP Public engagement for scientific researchers often consists of presentations where the researcher is available to the audience (e.g., lectures, science fairs, classroom visits). We propose that exhibits can also effectively engage large audiences in scientific research topics. Public parks and museums are two examples of informal science education (ISE) institutions that are broadly accessible to the general public. These venues provide opportunities for large numbers of people to learn about science in a social environment. We present two examples of collaborations between research scientists and ISE institutions to inform the general public about the importance of algae. In each example, a small exhibit that reached thousands was paired with intimate talks between research scientists and small audiences. The public exhibits provide a valuable tool to share current research with the general public on a much larger scale than could be accomplished through traditional outreach activities. Although visitors did not have direct access to an individual scientist, they did receive insights into ongoing science questions--and the methods and laboratories dedicated to answering them -- along with an introduction to scientists from local institutions.

Rebecca Bixby (Primary Presenter/Author), University of New Mexico, bbixby@unm.edu;


Ayesha Burdett (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), River Bend Ecology, Australia, Ayesha.Burdett@gmail.com ;


Selena Connealy (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), NM EPSCoR, Connealy@epscor.unm.edu;


Debra Novak (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science, Debra.Novak@state.nm.us;


Kathy Lang (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), ABQ Biopark, klang@cabq.gov;


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12:00 - 12:15: / 254 B “MAKING WAVES” OR JUST A RIPPLE? SUCCESSES AND OPPORTUNITIES FOR THE SFS PODCAST

5/21/2019  |   12:00 - 12:15   |  254 B

“MAKING WAVES” OR JUST A RIPPLE? SUCCESSES AND OPPORTUNITIES FOR THE SFS PODCAST The SFS podcast “Making Waves” began as a grassroots effort in 2013 with the goal of “spreading awareness of important freshwater science findings to ecologists at large, but also to discuss science in ways that foster public awareness of freshwater issues”. When the podcast began, we distributed it via YouTube and the SFS website, and we have recently expanded it to iTunes. As of February 2019, we have produced 38 total episodes, averaging one every other month. Unfortunately, a recent survey of the SFS membership indicated that 44% of SFS members have never listened to Making Waves, many of whom had not even heard of it. While not initially a stated goal, we have also aimed to highlight diverse people and viewpoints to inspire the next generation of freshwater scientists. The fact that less than 50% of interviewees identified as male or were tenure-track faculty shows some progress towards our goal of highlighting diversity in freshwater science, but the majority of interviewees were still white Americans. We will discuss what we learned from 5 years of podcasting and what opportunities we have to improve as the podcast continues to grow.

Erin Larson (Primary Presenter/Author), Cornell University, ern.larson@gmail.com;


Eric Moody (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Iowa State University, erickmoody@gmail.com;


Stephen Elser (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Arizona State University, selser2014@gmail.com;


Julie Kelso (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), ORISE Environmental Protection Agency, julia.kelso@gmail.com;


Susan Washko (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Arizona, swashko@email.arizona.edu;


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