Events: past and present
Our first meeting in 2022 will take place in February, more details soon to come.
May 18th: For many of us, the beginning of CURT. This date marks the kick-off of our very first CURT (virtual) conference. We shared our experiences in Melbourne and Berlin as urban ecologists in short Speed Talks, demonstrating a collective wealth of knowledge and application in urban ecology research. In addition, we heard an inspiring talk from Prof. Mark McDonnell on the history of urban ecology and what that means for an aspiring young research group such as ourselves. With almost 100 sign-ups for our first ever CURT-conference, we are humbled by the support of our communities in Melbourne and Berlin and very excited for the future.
June 2nd: Following our conference in May, we met online for our first Monthly Meeting. In addition to getting to know many new faces and catching-up with colleagues since our last gathering, we reviewed topics of interest from the conference and decided upon some preliminary working groups for the future.
July 7th: Our 2nd Monthly Meeting overall; we met together in various interest groups to discuss potential research questions and collaborative projects between Melbourne and Berlin.
August 11th: Prof. Ingo Kowarik joined us mid-august to share his talk on the foundation of the Berlin School of Urban Ecology, as well as a summary of some current work taking place right now in Berlin.
September 1st: To kick-off further discussions on urban biodiversity, Dr. Nike Sommerwerk and Dr. Jörg Freyhof from the Berlin Natural History Museum joined us to introduce a new research cluster with a focus in urban ecology.
October 6th: As part of our monthly meeting in October, we hosted Lee Harrison for a presentation on her work within City of Melbourne. Lee oversees many of the urban greening initiatives in Melbourne which are funded by the local government. We had a great group discussion on urban wildlife and citizen science and hope this exchange may benefit future urban greening projects in Berlin as well.
October 20th: In addition to hosting speakers from different backgrounds in urban ecology, we organized a careers meeting with representatives from local government, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), private firms and academia. The aim for this meeting was to offer multiple perspectives on urban ecological work and provide more information for those interested in other fields. Our guest speakers were Imke Wardenburg und Nina Dommaschke [project managers at NABU Berlin], Dr. Rodney van der Ree [ecological and environmental consultant in the private sector], Dr. Steve Sinclair [plant ecologist working with the Arthur Rylah Institute and the Victoria Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP)] and Dr. Sonja Knapp [research scientist at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ)]. We are very greatful to our guests and to our members for a wonderful discussion on career paths!
November 3rd: This month we welcomed back Dr. Tina Heger, research associate and instructor at the Technical University of Munich and founding member of Symbioscene, a science and art collaboration “setting the scene for an era beyond the Anthropocene”. Tina spoke with us about her experience as an ecologist within a science-art collaborative project, working towards a better human-nature relationship. It was great to hear about her unique insight in this area and how we may get involved in the future.
December 1st: On this final meeting for 2021, we met for a short check-in with our members over Zoom to discuss our progress so far among working groups, as well as the future of CURT, in the coming months and (hopefully) years. We are greatful for the thoughtful feedback and excited to cover new topics in 2022.