[Mindset Public Talk] Dr Philip Johns – Citizen Science & Conservation

Dear friends and colleagues,

we are pleased to announce Dr Philip Johns, from Yale-NUS, as our guest for November’s Mindset Public Talk. In this talk about Citizen Science & Conservation, Dr Johns will present a case study of smooth otters in Singapore and the role of community and technology in generating useful data to study otters’ behavior. More details below.

This event is one of Mindset’s Public Talks – monthly events that are generally held on the evening of the third Wednesday of each month. These talks are aimed to a general audience including academics, government officers, NGOs, people from the relevant industries, and any person with an interest for environmental issues. We are looking forward to see you in this and future Mindset events.


Mindset Public Talk, November 2016
Title: Citizen Science & Conservation
Guest Speaker: Dr Philip Johns
Date & time: Wed 16 Nov 2016, 6-7:30 pm
Venue: University of Nottingham Kuala Lumpur Teaching Centre (KLTC), Level 2, Chulan Tower, No 3 Jalan Conlay, Kuala Lumpur (GPS: 3.149604, 101.716449)Organizer: Mindset, UNMC Interdisciplinary Centre for Environmental Studies
RSVP: Wed 9 Nov, Praveena.Chackrapani@nottingham.edu.myRefreshments will be served after the talk
Transport from and back to UNMC will be provided for students who register before 9 Nov

[To avoid traffic hassle we encourage using public transport. The nearest stations to KLTC are Monorail’s Raja Chulan (11 min walking) and Bukit Bintang (13 min)]


About the Talk

Smooth-coated otters (Lutrogale perspicillata) returned to Singapore a few years ago in response to improving water conditions. An extremely active group of enthusiasts has been following the otters almost daily. Technology and online conventions have grown to the point where people are collecting a large quantity of high quality behavioural data. This presentation discusses the Singapore otters as a case study in the role of community and technology in generating usable data — especially behavioural data — and presents preliminary behavioural analysis of the local otters. The presentation concludes discussing possible future directions of citizen science, including novel directions.

About the Speaker

Philip Johns is an assistant professor in Life Sciences at Yale-NUS College in Singapore. He has studied the social behaviour and evolution of various animals, including praying mantids, spiders, scorpions, termites, and a group of stalk-eyed flies that lives in SE Asia. He has studied the evolution and genetics of mate competition, mate choice, cooperation and altruism, and sexual cannibalism. When he moved to Singapore he became enamoured with the recently returned smooth-coated otters, and has been studying them ever since.

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