Science and art in Romania

January 07, 2015

See and Do! – Enhancing skills for conservation efforts in Romania and Moldova
Dr Szilárd Bücs (2014: “Protecting Horseshoe Bats of Romania”)

Many young professionals in Romania and the Republic of Moldova are actively involved in conservation efforts, but there are key areas where their knowledge is deficient, like for example biostatistics, GIS (Geographic Information System) and visual communication. In order to address these needs, Romanian and Moldovan CLP alumni applied for a CLP Networking Grant to finance a short training focused in these areas.

Having received the grant, the partnership of the Sistemis Group, the Romanian Bat Protection Association, and the Administration of the Vânători-Neamț Nature Park organised a training event from 4-8 November 2014. Vânători-Neamț Nature Park was chosen as the course venue for its beautiful forests, efforts in protecting the European bison (Bison bonasus) and establishing a free-ranging population of this Vulnerable species. The 16 participants, including three trainers, worked intensively to reach the course objectives: (1) to analyze data obtained in the course of their CLP projects using biostatistics and GIS methods; and (2) to plan an educational activity using visual communication techniques.

Even within a short timeframe for such vast topics, the group was able to obtain a much clearer vision about the possibilities offered by specialised tools. Important skills gained include: visual expression of scientific results in GIS, analysis of field data with statistical tools using the R programming language, and planning ideas visually to create an emotional impact on the general public. If faced with more complex situations, the communication lines established with experts from the field will help the group reach long term objectives.

Please enjoy this short video clip (with English subtitles) created during the training that presents the surroundings of the training location. If you watch closely, you may be able to spot the young bison that was born during the course:

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