Marine and Antarctic Seminar Series (MASS) - Wholeness and Regionality in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean

  • Start Date
    13th Nov 2018
  • End Date
    13th Nov 2018
  • Duration
    1 hour
  • Description
    The IMAS Marine and Antarctic Seminar Series (MASS) is usually held on the 2nd Tuesday of each month, bringing together researchers from across a range of interests and expertise to discuss a significant topic. The next seminar is:

    Wholeness and Regionality in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean

    In the popular imagination, both the Antarctic and the Southern Ocean tend to be understood as wholes – undifferentiated masses of liquid or frozen water. But how are they conceptualized from the perspectives of different HASS and STEM disciplines, and how has this changed over time? In this seminar, a historian, a marine biologist and a physical oceanographer address the question of regionality in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean, exploring whether, when, and how they should be divided into separate zones, and what impact this segmentation has on our knowledge of this part of our planet.

    Speakers: Dr Alessandro Antonello, Dr Will Hobbs, Adjunct Professor Stephen Nicol

    When: 1pm, Tuesday 13 November 2018

    Where: Aurora Lecture Theatre, Salamanca

    To Connect via MeetMe, open a web browser (We recommend not to use Safari or MS Edge), go to, select guest and enter required details, meeting ID is 779425, no passcode required. If prompted please install CloudAxis plugin as required and restart the browser.

    A light lunch will be provided after the seminar

    Previous MASS seminars

    Tuesday 16 October 2018

    Capturing Marine Biodiversity: new tools and a glimpse of the future

    As human pressures on natural systems escalate, understanding and predicting the distribution biodiversity, now and into the future, has become increasingly important for managing marine systems. Biological data are usually sparse and patchy, yet managers need comprehensive information at broad spatial scales to make important decisions such as prioritising areas for conservation (e.g. Marine Protected Areas), managing the impacts of activities such as fishing and deep-sea mining, and developing response plans to climate change. Our three speakers will discuss the new age of open data, ocean observations, cutting-edge spatial and statistical analysis tools, their application to quantifying and mapping marine biodiversity and their implications for future ocean management.

    Speakers: Dr Vanessa Lucieer, Dr Nicole Hill, Professor Craig Johnson

    Click here for a recording of this seminar.

    Friday 31 August 2018

    Fisheries & Food Security: production, trade and nutrition

    Ensuring food security as human population heads towards a predicted 9 billion people by 2050 will require a sound understanding of the characteristics and potential of different food systems in a highly interconnected world. Fisheries provide a critical source of food globally, and although often overlooked, are a rich source of bioavailable micronutrients essential to human health. Today, our expert speakers span the fields of fisheries, social science and food system management. They will present contrasting but complimentary perspectives on the role of fisheries in food security by exploring the stability of production patterns, redistribution through trade and emerging knowledge on the nutritional benefits of capture fisheries.

    Speakers: Rich Cottrell (CMS & IMAS), Dr Christina Hicks (Lancaster University), Professor Reg Watson

    Click here for a recording of the seminar.

    14 August 2018

    Monitoring the Southern Ocean: new tools, observations and data management

    The Southern Ocean is an area where geological, physical and biogeochemical processes can dramatically change in space and time. Sustained and calibrated observations are key to understand the sensitivity of the Earth system to environmental changes, validate models and provide accurate predictions. Today, our expert speakers span across the fields of physical oceanography, geology and data management. They will present pioneering developments in the tools now available to study our oceans, the observing and data delivery platforms in place to facilitate the research outputs, and demonstrate how we can use field observations to understand our past.

    Speakers: Associate Professor Guy Williams, Dr Jacqueline Halpin and Dr Louise Newman

    Click here for a recording of the seminar.

    12 June 2018

    Marine renewable energy: what’s holding back the tide?

    The marine renewable energy industry is an emerging industry globally. Ocean energy technologies and devices (e.g. offshore wind farms, wave energy generators) are being developed around the world. Our current understanding of its potential and effects is informed by research, largely driven by technology developers and research agencies in the Northern Hemisphere. We will hear from experts of emerging research into Southern Hemisphere physical oceanographic conditions and major engineering challenges, including biofouling. We will also hear about conflict surrounding this sector’s development in the Northern Hemisphere and how it can be avoided in the south.

    Speakers: Dr Mark Hemer (CSIRO), Dr Jessica Walker (AMC) and Dr Karen Alexander (IMAS)

    Click here for a recording of the seminar.

    15 May 2018

    Real-time data and real world realities: applications in environmental monitoring, fisheries and aquaculture

    Rates of real-time data provision and use are increasing dramatically across research, industry and government sectors.But despite the inevitable ‘reality’ of real-time data, data accumulated real-time is only useful if you can apply the intelligence you gather in a timely manner.Real-time data aggregation allows you to see ‘what’s happening now’, but the process is not without challenges.These include having enough analytical capacity, and ensuring data integrity.

    The talk will look at three applications of real-time data and explore the opportunities and challenges for marine research and industry.

    Speakers: Dr Klaas Hartmann (IMAS), Sue Grau (Oysters Tasmania) and Dr Jeff Ross (IMAS).

    17 April 2018

    Assessing changing marine ecosystems in the Southern Ocean: The way forward

    The Southern Ocean occupies ~ 20% of the global ocean, and its ecosystems support values and services with immense global worth, including carbon sequestration and climate regulation, high-value fisheries, and unique biodiversity values. Polar regions are undergoing rapid and intensifying change, and these changes are having profound and regionally specific impacts on species and habitats. However, the ongoing implications of changes for the structure and function of ecosystems and the values and services that they generate are not clear. This is in large part because of the difficulty of observing Southern Ocean ecosystems, and disentangling what drives their structure and function. Despite these challenges, considerable progress has been made in recent decades, and the community is now at a point where it is feasible to make a 1st integrated assessment of Southern Ocean Ecosystems. This is the subject of an international meeting in Hobart -the 1st Marine Ecosystem Assessment for the Southern Ocean conference (MEASO, and this seminar will provide a synopsis of progress from MEASO 2018 and the way forward following the conference.

    Speakers: Dr Andrew Constable, Dr Huw Griffiths (British Antarctic Survey), Dr Rowan Trebilco, Dr Jeff McGee

    27 March 2018

    Pitching to the people: new platforms in communicating marine science

    Speakers: Dr Sean Tracey, Associate Professor Catriona Macleod, Andrew Rhodes

    Click here for a recording of this seminar.

    13 February 2018

    Observations, experiments, and our love affair with P-values: pitfalls, and practical alternatives

    For many researchers, the application of statistical tests to obtain a P-value (probability) for our observations or experimental results is a crucial component of our work. P-values often determine the next step in our research, our research funding, and can even change the development of whole fields of science. Yet P-values are rarely reliable indicators of an underlying trend. A growing body of evidence shows that over-reliance on P-values can be uninformative and – at times – misleading, such that some journals now reject any manuscripts that contain P-values. These talks will highlight some common pitfalls in our use of experimental design and statistical testing, and give examples of practical alternatives.

    Speakers: Professor Emeritus Geoff Cumming (La Trobe University), Associate Professor Catriona Hurd, Dr Jon Havenhand (University of Gothenburg)

    Click here for a recording of the seminar

    The New Statistics: What we need for open science

    There is now clear evidence across a number of disciplines that published research is often wrong—this is the replication crisis. Reliance on p < .05 is a major cause of the crisis, and has caused massive damage. The rapid rise of Open Science practices in response to the crisis is probably the most important and exciting development for many years in how science is done and data are analysed. It’s already leading to more trustworthy research.

    Open Science requires preregistration where possible, open and full reporting, and replication. It also requires improved statistical methods, beyond p < .05, most notably estimation and meta-analysis — i.e. the new statistics, based on confidence intervals. A major obstacle to full adoption of Open Science and estimation is researchers’ deep, deep attachment to p-values and statistical significance. I’ll discuss how this attachment can be addressed, and how Open Science and the new statistics make better sense than traditional approaches. I will discuss and demonstrate an estimation approach to the analysis of data for a range of measures and designs, with an emphasis on using graphical representations likely to assist understanding and statistical communication. I’ll mention our new introductory statistics textbook that takes an estimation and Open Science approach from the very start. I will be happy to try to tailor the choice of topics and examples in accord with the preferences of workshop participants.

    Speaker: Professor Emeritus Geoff Cumming

    12 December 2017

    Reefs of Change

    Reef ecosystems harbour a disproportionate proportion of the world’s marine biodiversity and support some of the most important ecosystem services for humans including lucrative fisheries and tourism industries.
    This MASS panel-event will cover Reefs of Change from tropical to temperate systems. Firstly it will explore reef ecosystems at large biogeographical scales to determine how temperature underpins species distributions and how re-distributions of species will likely play out under changing climate. Secondly, long-term reef changes observed across Australia will be detailed, including regions undergoing temperate-tropical transitions under both chronic and acute warming. Finally, the dynamics of how reef systems undergo change will be described and concepts of stability, tipping-points and reef resilience will be discussed along with opportunities to thwart unwanted shifts.

    Speakers: Dr Rick Stuart-Smith; Dr Neville Barrett; Dr Scott Ling

    14 November 2017

    The need for negative CO2 emissions: Nature versus Nurture

    If we are to restrict warming of the planet to 2C or less in the coming decades, we will have to achieve negative emissions by removing large amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and stowing them away permanently. In the marine realm, there are a range of options that have the potential to sequester additional carbon, from natural (often termed blue carbon) to purposeful manipulation of the carbon cycle (referred to as climate intervention or geoengineering). Today we will compare and contrast the science behind Nature (i.e., blue carbon) and Nurture (i.e., geoengineering), and then frame this debate around the broader environmental regulations required for each approach.

    Speakers: Associate Professor Peter Macreadie (Deakin University); Professor Philip Boyd; Aylin Mohammadalipour Tofighi (IMAS)

    10 October 2017

    The Polar Code for shipping

    The International Code for Ships Operating in Polar Waters, the ‘Polar Code’, entered into force on 1 January 2017 for new ships. Vessels travelling in Arctic and Antarctic waters are now classed into one of three classifications based on their ability to withstand impact with three different types of ice. Ice is the critical factor here, and this presentation will give an overview of what’s in the Code, explain the difficulties of ice-forecasting, and demonstrate the software used as a Bridge Simulator to train ship’s crew in ice navigation.

    SpeakersDr Julia Jabour (IMAS); Dr Jan Lieser (ACE CRC); Scott Laughlin (AMC)

    12 September 2017

    Towards an acoustically Sound Ocean: How is anthropogenic sound impacting marine life?

    There is growing scientific and societal concern about the effects of anthropogenic sound on marine ecosystems. Sources of these sounds are diverse and include ship noise, pile driving, tidal power generation and seismic surveying, which involves the repetitive use of intense acoustic impulse signals to image subsea geology. To date, the effects of seismic exposure on whales has received considerable attention, fish somewhat less, and invertebrates virtually none. This seminar will present recent work examining the effects of seismic surveying on marine invertebrates, through a collaboration with IMAS and Curtin University. We will also explore the extent to which current state, national and international environmental protection regimes adequately respond to marine noise pollution.

    Speakers: Associate Professor Jayson Semmens (IMAS), Associate Professor Rob McCauley (Curtin) and Dr Jeff McGee (IMAS – Law)

    8 August 2017

    Integrated Multitrophic Aquaculture (IMTA): Opportunity or not?

    Integrated multitrophic aquaculture (IMTA) is all about turning waste streams from finfish aquaculture into raw materials for further production, providing secondary products and environmental benefits such as nutrient and carbon mitigation and more efficient/ responsible food production at the same time. Seaweeds (primary producers) are an integral component of all IMTA initiatives, but are often thought of as secondary products.

    Speakers: Associate Professor Catriona Macleod; Associate Professor Catriona Hurd; Dr Karen Alexander

Authorised by the Executive Director, Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies
November 7, 2018