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The Chesapeake Monitoring Cooperative met at Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania in June. Dickinson College is the home of the Alliance for Aquatic Resource Monitoring (ALLARM), a partner in this project. Chesapeake Monitoring Cooperative envisions a Chesapeake community where all data of known quality are used to inform watershed management decisions and restoration efforts. This project is funded by the U.S. EPA's Chesapeake Bay Program and includes several important factors, such as training sessions for non-traditional monitoring groups, a database that incorporates a variety of non-traditional monitoring data, and assessment of the monitoring data (i.e., report cards).
IAN staff headed back to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil for another stop in their journey to create the first Guanabara Bay Report Card. This visit included a workshop in Niteroi, a city across Guanabara Bay from Rio de Janeiro as well as a boat tour of the bay. The workshop included discussions reviewing values of and threats to the ecosystem, adding new indicators to the report, and presenting survey results from the previous workshop. Clear communication on the restoration of Guanabara Bay was identified as a key effort in stakeholder engagement, especially during the report card process. The boat tour showcased both the good and bad of Guanabara Bay, including fishing and pollution.
After the successful completion of IAN's first semester-long science visualization course, a similar class will be offered this fall to practitioners. This will be a great opportunity for our partners and collaborators to learn valuable science visualization techniques from IAN's professional Science Communicators. Class will meet once a week using GoToMeeting, an online platform that will enable students to take the class from anywhere. A "flipped classroom" will also be employed, where lecture material is prepared by instructors and viewed by students ahead of class time. Students will be building their own portfolio through weekly homework and will receive constructive feedback during both class time and online forums/platforms. For more information on the course, check out the webpage from last semester's class!
IAN's annual retreat is held in the spring of each year and we invite not only the smaller, core group of IAN staff, but the larger UMCES staff that sit at our partners' offices (U.S. EPA's Chesapeake Bay Program and Maryland Departments of Natural Resources and the Environment). This provides a cross-pollination of ideas and broader thinking to help IAN be even more successful in the future. This year's retreat consisted of several key activities that will help IAN become a better organization - the ABT phrase exercise, the Snap exercise, and the IAN Report Card project. Check out our blog to see the outcomes and outputs from the retreat.
Further information: www.ian.umces.edu