Postgrad Student Forum

The Postgrad Student Forum is directed at post-graduate students and post-doctoral fellows working on foundational biodiversity information-related projects including systematics, taxonomy and other disciplines that generate or that use foundational biodiversity information (e.g. DNA barcodes or sequence data, specimen or observation data).

2019 Postgrad Student Forum

The 2019 Postgrad Student Forum was held one day prior to the BIMF-FBIP Forum. The Forum was directed at postgraduate students and post-doctoral fellows working on foundational biodiversity information-related projects and was attended by over 82 delegates. The programme was opened by FBIP programme manager Prof Joe Sebola (SANBI). The theme for the 2019 Postgraduate Forum was ‘scientific career role modelling’ and included guest speakers Prof Annah Moteetee (University of Johannesburg), Dr Caswell Munyai (University of KwaZulu-Natal), and Dr Tshifhiwa Mandiwana-Neudani (University of Limpopo). The talks were followed by an interactive panel discussion. SANBI Deputy Director for Biodiversity Collection Permitting  Karin Behr also presented on permit requirements for biodiversity researchers. The FBIP sponsored 39 students’ accommodation and travel costs.

2018 Postgrad Student Forum

The 2018 Postgrad Student Forum was held concurrently with the BIMF/FBIP Forum. The Postgrad Student Forum is directed at postgraduate students and post-doctoral fellows working on foundational biodiversity information-related projects and was attended by over 40 delegates. The programme included talks by Dr Tshifhiwa Mandiwana-Neudani from the University of Limpopo who shared “Typical skills that are necessary to build a career in taxonomy”. In addition Mr Fortunate Phaka and Thula ‘Zee’ Cube presented a Science Communication workshop. The programme was concluded by the election of three new representatives for the FBIP Postgrad Student Association: Fortunate Phaka (NWU), Ryan Rattray (UJ) and Nqobile Ndhlovo (UKZN). The FBIP sponsored 37 students’ accommodation and travel costs.

2017 Postgrad Student Forum

The 2017 Postgrad Student Forum was held concurrently with the BIMF/FBIP Forum. The Postgrad Student Forum is directed at postgraduate students and post-doctoral fellows working on foundational biodiversity information-related projects and was attended by 29 delegates. The programme included talks by SANBI Deputy Director for Biodiversity Collection Permitting Karin Behr who offered valuable background information on biodiversity collection permits and FBIP Science Communicator Dane McDonald who shared lessons from a (Biodiversity) Science Communications perspective. This was followed by speed presentations of fifteen students to showcase their research projects. The programme was concluded by the election of three representatives for the FBIP Postgrad Student Association: Fortunate Phaka (NWU), Ryan Rattray (UJ) and Nqobile Ndhlovo (UKZN). The FBIP sponsored 17 students’ accommodation and travel costs.

2016 Postgrad Student Forum

The first FBIP Postgrad Student Forum was held on 12 May 2016 in conjunction with the BIMF/FBIP Forum. The aim of the meeting was to engage with students to establish if there is a need for an annual student forum and to determine if there are any gaps that need to be addressed. Thirteen students representing several institutions attended the forum which was facilitated by Leigh Richards (Durban Natural Science Museum) with support from Musa Mhlambo (Albany Museum, Department of Freshwater Invertebrates) and Pholoshi Maake (Agricultural Research Institution, ARC). The main outcomes of the meeting are summarised here. On recommendation of the Steering Committee, the Postgrad Forum will be hosted annually.