The workshop, convened by University of Florida as part of the Global Women Scholars Network, was a full day for women in Latin America to convene, network, and provide solid information on important contributions women provide, barriers women face, and tools women have in the arena of leadership in environmental stewardship.
We learned about the journey different women took to get to where they are today. Speakers included: Sonia Canavelli, National Research Coordinator of Biodiversity and Ecosystems at the National Institute of Agricultural Technology; Barbara Saavedera, Director of the Wildlife Conservation Society, Chile; Diana (Tita) Alvira Social Conservation Program Manager in the Field Museum in Chicago; Noemi Porro Researcher at the Center for Agricultural Science and Rural Development; and Veronica Vasquez, Professor in the Department of Rural Development at the Colegio de Post Graduados.
We also discussed the importance of mentorship: Who makes a good mentor? What is the role of a mentor? How can we be a good mentor to others within academia and outside it. Speakers included: Citlalli Lopez, Researcher of the Centro de Investigaciones Tropical of the University of Veracruz, who has over the years provided mentorship for a remarkable number of women entering into the social sciences; Susana Padua who set up Instituo de Pesquisas Ecologicas, a phenomenal center which provides support for businesses, tools for conservation, and even masters degrees in conservation biology; and finally Maria Fernanda Checa, currently a PhD Student at University of Florida in Ecology and Conservation who has worked with students in her home country of Ecuador providing advice, support and mentorship on working in the area of butterfly conservation.
There were several major themes which emerged from the brain storming session on the major contributions and barriers women face. Women are uniquely collaborative, readily able to network, have a systems view of nature, and can easily juggle multiple tasks. However, they often face the burden of having high expectations for achieving family and career goals or sigmas that women are not as smart, bold, or strong as men. Additionally, women may not feel they have the finances and support to accomplish their goals.
Perhaps the most constructive part of the workshop were the tools and partnerships developed. We discussed the need for women to establish networks both within and outside academia who can provide support and information (e.g. information on jobs, women’s advocacy groups). We identified the importance of having a mentor and role model in the lives of women. Finally, there was an important benefit in participating in organized events such as this workshop to share information, establish long-standing relationships, and creatively think about solutions to the challenge women face.
“Story-telling African Americans in the West”
Presenters: Dr. Camille Dungy, Dr. Ella Marie Ray, Mr. JT Reynolds, Dr. Malcolm Scott
Thursday, February 12th | 5:30-7p.m. | Avogadro’s Number, 605 S Mason St., Fort Collins, CO
In honor of Black History Month this panel brings together a wide range of view points on African Americans in the West as told through stories. This panel features: Professor Camille Dungy of CSU’s English Department whose poems and essays have been widely published in anthologies and journals, who will launch the panel on African Americans in the West through spoken word poetry; Professor Malcolm Scott of CSU’s School of Social Work, who will speak to the importance of diversity in the classroom, diversity within the faculty, and lessons learned from social work on diversity as told through stories; Mr. James T. Reynolds, retired Superintendent of Death Valley National Park and long time law enforcement officer for the National Park Service, will speak his experience as an African Americans in the West. Finally, it is our pleasure to introduce Dr. Ella Marie Ray Metropolitan State University of Denver who will speak to her work on fire clay sculpture as a mean for African American cultural expression.
“Advancing the Role of Minorities in Nature”
Presenters: Midy Aponte, Tylar Greene, Shelton Johnson, James Edward Mills
Thursday, February 26th | 5:30-7pm | Avogadro’s Number, 605 S Mason St., Fort Collins, CO
Originally designed as a panel for Black History Month, this panel has evolved into one that speaks to the importance of diversity in nature. The panel features Shelton Johnson of the National Park Service, who will launch the panel with a historical perspective of African Americans in nature with a focus on Buffalo Soldiers. Author, publisher, and outdoor expedition leader James Edward Mills will follow by speaking to his experience as an African American in the outdoor industry. Tylar Greene of the US Fish and Wildlife Service will speak to the rich cultural history of national wildlife refuges. Finally, we will round out the discussion with hispanic activist Midy Aponte, Founding Executive Director of the American Latino Heritage Fund of the National Park Foundation who will speak to the role of hispanics in nature.
Sponsor include the National Science Foundation; The School of Global and Environmental Sustainability; The Center for Women’s Studies and Gender Research; Graduate Women in Science; and the Global Women Scholars Network.
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“Gender in Global Water Issues: The Nexus of Women, Water, and Environmental Governance”
Presenters: Dr. Ruth Alexander, Dr. Suzanne Kent, Dr. Ellen Wohl and Dr. Michele Koons
Thursday, November 13, 2014 | 6-7p.m. |
Avogadro’s Number, 605 S Mason St., Fort Collins, CO
The Global Women Scholars Network speaker series brings together water scientists, historical anthropologists, gender researchers, and international development activists to share information on the issues addressing national and global water systems in relation to women. The panel features: Professor Ellen Wohl, who will speak on the importance and flow of water resources particularly during climate change; Professor Ruth Alexander, who will speak on how water resources have shaped women’s quality of life, civic engagement and research in the US; and Professor Suzanne Kent, who will round out the discussion with a global perspective on drought and water management in Central America. Finally, it is our pleasure to introduce Dr. Michele Koons, Curator of Archaeology at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science who will speak to her work on ancient irrigation systems within South America.
“Gender in Professional Arenas: Striking a Balance for Success in Scientific Careers.”
Presenters: Gillian Bowser, Emily Fischer, Sara Rathburn, and Paula Cushing
November 6th | 5-6:30 |
Avogadro’s Number, 605 S Mason St., Fort Collins, CO
The Graduate Women in Science, Northern Colorado Chapter is pleased to bring together successful women in their fields to discuss the balance within their professional careers. The panel features Dr. Gillian Bowser, of CSU’s Department of Ecosystem Science and Sustainability and the Global Women’s Scholars Network, Dr. Emily Fischer of CSU’s Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Dr. Sara Rathburn of CSU’s Department of Geosciences, and Dr. Paula Cushing, Curator of Invertebrate Zoology at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.
Sponsor include the National Science Foundation; The School of Global and Environmental Sustainability; The Center for Women’s Studies and Gender Research; Ripple Effect Initiative; Graduate Women in Science; and the Global Women Scholars Network as part of the Women, Population, and the Environment Speaker Series.
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Scanning the internet for key words and information on discussions focusing on gender and climate change elicits critical information on topics influencing public opinion and, thus, policy agendas. The idea that social media has the potential to influence policies regarding gender and sustainability emerged as the main take home message of Dr. Ulrike Gretzel’s talk last Tuesday as part of a Women, Population and Environment speaker series.
Dr. Gretzel presented research on social media’s role in discussions surrounding the gender and climate change debate, as well as the differences between social media and mainstream media’s discourse on the topic. She also discussed the preliminary results for a study regarding people’s perceptions on the unique challenges and contributions women face as leaders in the sustainable development movement. The Global Women Scholars Network hopes to use this data to help inform future research and mentoring opportunities for women and men working at the intersection of gender issues in sustainability.
For a the full video of Dr. Gretzel’s presentation, please visit the GWSN YouTube page at http://youtu.be/eEAjgJ4fH3k, OR click the following link for the Powerpoint presentation: Climate Change and Gender
The Women, Population and Environment speaker series is sponsored by the following:
Guest speaker, Dr. Ulrike Gretzel will present her research on social media’s role in discussions surrounding the gender and climate change debate, as well as the differences between social media and mainstream media’s discourse on the topic.
Bio: Ulrike Gretzel is an Associate Professor for Marketing at the Institute for Innovation in Business & Social Research, University of Wollongong and Director of the Laboratory for Intelligent Systems in Tourism (LIST). She received her Ph.D. in Communications from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and holds a Masters degree in International Business from the Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration.
Her research focuses on adoption and use of information technology, and specifically social media. She also studies issues related to information credibility and influence in the context of online media. Her research has been funded by the Australian Research Council, the US National Science Foundation, the US National Endowment for the Humanities, the US National Park Service, TripAdvisor, the Bush Presidential Library and Museum, and a number of national, regional and local tourism organizations in North America, Europe, Australia and Asia.
Associate Prof. Gretzel is the editor of the e-Review of Tourism Research and a board member of the International Federation for Information Technology in Travel & Tourism (IFITT), both aimed at bridging the gap between academia and industry.
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Dara Wald graduated with a PhD in Human Dimensions of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation from the University of Florida in December 2012. Dara recently accepted a position as a postdoctoral scholar in the Center for Policy Informatics at Arizona State University.
Dara’s research has covered a wide range of social conflicts over environmental problems, including conflicts with Maasai ranchers over land tenure changes, discrepancies between various groups on how to protect and manage Florida open space, and conflicts regarding the management of outdoor cats. Dara uses a wide range of social science methods to explore how cognition, social interactions and the media influence environmental conflict. At Arizona State University, Dara will continue this line of research and combine various techniques to explore how technology influences social interactions, organizations, communication and conflicts over natural resource use and policy.
Dara currently teaches an online course entitled, “Networking Women in Sustainability, Science and Action” at the University of Florida, which welcomes enrollment from students around the world. This course covered a range of topics, including culture and gender issues related to sustainability, the various disciplines that work to solve sustainability challenges, and women’s perspectives on participating in leadership, policy, globalization and research on sustainability. Discussions focused on science-based professions in and out of academia and the influence of socio-ecological sustainability on every aspect of life on earth.
Amid preparing for her new post-doc position, Dara will present a paper entitled, “A Multivariate Model of Stakeholder Conflict over the Lethal Management of Outdoor Cats” at the upcoming 2013 International Congress for Conservation Biology (ICCB) in Baltimore, MD.
To learn more about Dara’s research, visit her website at: http://daramwald.com/.