We are continually looking for new ways to engage and share with students, scientists, and the general public. Everyone can follow us on tumblr, facebook, youtube, twitter, wikispaces, flickr, and figshare. Web-based resources we have developed include an online version of the Colton Shellfish Collection, crassostreome, Research Notes on Ocean Acidification and oystergen.es.
Recent Posts related to Outreach
The Ecology of Infectious Marine Disease Course is currently going on at the Friday Harbor Laboratories. This course will be a training program in invertebrate-pathogen ecology that will bring together and train the future leaders in this rapidly emerging, multidisciplinary field. The course will 1) survey host-pathogen interaction in the Friday Harbor region, 2) teach diagnostic tools for identifying viral, bacterial, protozoan and fungal infections of invertebrates, 3) teach approaches to examine the invertebrate innate immune response to different pathogens, and finally 4) use these methods to address ecological questions about the distribution of pathogenic interactions, and the experimental effects of temperature and increased acidification on interactions. Instructors include Drew Harvell, Carolyn Friedman, and myself with Lisa Crosson as the TA. In an effort to enhance the educational experience and engage in effective outreach the course has a blog (infectiousness.tumblr.com) for us to share and address any questions and comments. The public can also peruse the class website and the class message board, though the latter is primarily intended for the inside baseball stuff.
Each instructor will be overseeing a module, and I will be running the genomics module during week 4. The plan is to highlight the underlying rationale for examining molecular mechanisms, introduce online resources in the form of carrying out a ‘my favorite gene’ project, as well as having them explore how to analyze high-throughput sequencing (Illumina Hi-Seq) datasets. While the sequencing is yet to be completed, the goal is to analyze datasets designed to examine the effect of temperature on QPX (a pathogen) and identify a novel phage that is associated with a pathogenic bacteria in abalone.
In the end students will work in small groups to further develop a research project that will be presented at the end of the quarter, accompanied by a research paper. Stay tuned as the plan is to broadcast the presentations online.
This has been reposted from our lab tumblelog
My rockethub project closed today and it was an incredible success! I raised $5,175 – more than my goal. The success of this project was due to a group of family, friends, colleagues, and strangers who thought my project was cool and/or were intrigued by the crowdfunding model. Overall, it was really awesome to see how many people got excited about science and wanted to help out. Here are some pointers on how to make your own project a crowdfunding success:
1. Make sure your project information is accessible to a broad range of people. Transcriptome sequencing can seem pretty esoteric to many, but I had a number of people tell me that my project description made it easy to understand.
2. Use your social media connections to get the word out. A large majority of my fuelers came from advertising my project over facebook. I posted about it on my wall (and friends re-posted), but I also created an “event” so that people actually got invitations to donate to my project.
3. Spread the word to people who are somehow connected to what you do. The last-minute surge of donations came mostly from people involved in the shellfish industry. I had contacted Bill Dewey of Taylor Shellfish about my project and he spread the word to his colleagues. A number of them showed amazing generosity, including one person who created a challenge for the others to collectively donate $750, which he then matched!
Thank you to everyone who made this project a success! I’m excited to put the funds to good use and generate some much needed data on how ocean acidification affects Pacific oysters.
via the Lab Tumblr: http://genefish.tumblr.com/post/24010561426
The usual follow up to that question, is “what if someone scoops your research?“. I will not disagree this is a possibility. Others are concerned with intellectual property and I respect persons have their reasons, ambitions, and agreements with other parties. Rather than speaking to public perceptions I just want to respond to the initial question. The focus of our research program is environmental physiology with a reliance of genomic techniques. All students (graduate and undergraduates) maintain lab notebooks at genefish.wikispaces.com. Some use the wiki and a few people also use Evernote. As a PI, these notebooks allow me to easily monitor research progress. Our research group can easily keep up with each others research and providing assistance at the bench is simple. Another reason is that most of research is federally funded, therefore it seems sharing as much we can in real-time is appropriate.
Probably one of the biggest reasons is that by sharing our science we hope to contribute to a culture. In genomics, we have so much more data than we need. By sharing the data I hope others can use the information and focus more an making new discoveries (that they share).
I’m sure almost everyone has heard of crowdfunding for research dollars at this point, and maybe you are even intrigued by the concept. Well, two of us SAFS-ites (Lauren in the Olden Lab and Emma in the Roberts Lab) are out on the crowdfunding limb this month as part of the second #SciFund Challenge. #SciFund will run through the end of the month, during which time we will promote our projects through friends, colleagues, social networking, and media.
Crowdfunding isn’t only about raising research dollars, but a way to get a broad range of people interested and involved in research that they might not normally think about. So it’s about describing our research in a way that engages a lot of people through narratives, video, and creating relevant and unique rewards for contributors.
You are probably wondering how you can help these intrepid members of your department – right?
1. Check out the projects on RocketHub. They are really different and launched at different times, but both will run the rest of the month:
- Emma’s “Save Oysters from Ocean Acidification” Project- keywords: ocean acidification, aquaculture, food resources. URL: http://www.rockethub.com/projects/6330-save-oysters-from-ocean-acidification
- Lauren’s “The Lakes Are Alive With the Sound of Data” Project – keywords: urbanization, freshwater conservation, bioacoustics. URL: http://www.rockethub.com/projects/7545-the-lakes-are-alive-with-the-sound-of-data
2. Kick in a few bucks if you are motivated – even small dollar amounts add up and also create momentum for a project!
3. Are you on Facebook/Twitter/ or have a website/blog?
Or – do you know people who do? Could you post our projects to people you know or those that follow this kind of research? We both have short snippets about our research which you can use to re-post our content.
4. Do you know related researchers, organizations, or media that we should network with for support? Send us their names or contact information.
And since crowdfunding is about offering something in return, in return we promise to be good guinea pigs and share what we’ve learned through this process!
(and as always, sorry for the cross-posts!)
Emma and Lauren
via the Lab Tumblr: http://genefish.tumblr.com/post/22275868550