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Bridging the gap from student to senior scientist: recommendations for engaging early-career scientists in professional biological societies


Authors

GRANT R.W. HUMPHRIES1, SCOTT A. FLEMMING2, AMANDA J. GLADICS3, SJURDUR HAMMER4, KIRK A. HART5, KAZUHIKO HIRATA6, MICHELLE ANTOLOS7, PETER J. KAPPES8, ELLEN MAGNUSDOTTIR9, HEATHER L. MAJOR10, FIONA McDUIE11, KRISTINA McOMBER12, RACHAEL A. ORBEN3, MORITZ S. SCHMID13 & MICHELLE WILLE14

1Department of Ecology and Evolution, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY 11795, USA (grwhumphries@humphriesresearch.com)
2Department of Environmental & Life Sciences, Trent University, Peterborough, ON K9J 7B8, Canada
3Hatfield Marine Science Center, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Oregon State University, Newport, OR 97365, USA
4Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health & Comparative Medicine, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, UK
5Korea Institute of Ornithology, Department of Biology, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea
6School of Fisheries, University of Hokkaido, Hakodate 060-0808, Japan
7Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, USA
8Oregon Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, USA
9University of Iceland, Askja, Reykjavik, Iceland
10Department of Biological Sciences, University of New Brunswick, Saint John, NB E2L 4L5, Canada
11Centre for Tropical Environmental and Sustainability Studies, James Cook University, Cairns 4811, Australia
12Department of Biology, Pomona College, Claremont, CA 91711, USA
13Takuvik Joint International Laboratory, Département de biologie et Québec-Océan, Laval University, Québec City, QC G1V 0A6, Canada
14Zoonos Science Center, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Microbiology, Uppsala University, Uppsala, 751 23, Sweden


Received 18 November 2015, accepted 22 April 2016

Date Pubished: 2016/10/15
Date Online: 2017/02/28


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Citation

HUMPHRIES, G.R.W., FLEMMING, S.A., GLADICS, A.J., HAMMER, S., HART, K.A., HIRATA, K., ANTOLOS, M., KAPPES, P.J., MAGNUSDOTTIR, E., MAJOR, H.L., McDUIE, F., McOMBER, K., ORBEN, R.A., SCHMID, M.S. & WILLE, M. 2016. Bridging the gap from student to senior scientist: recommendations for engaging early-career scientists in professional biological societies. Marine Ornithology 44: 157-166.


Key words: professional societies, early-career scientists, recruitment, engagement, senior scientists, guidelines


Abstract

Despite their long-standing and central role in the dissemination, promotion and defense of science, scientific societies currently face a unique combination of economic, social and technological changes. As a result, one of the most pressing challenges facing many societies is declining membership due to reduced recruitment and a failure to retain members, particularly early-career scientists (ECSs). To ensure that professional biological societies retain long-term viability and relevance, the recruitment and retention of ECSs needs to be a main priority. Here we propose a series of recommendations that we, a group of ECSs, believe will help professional societies better integrate and retain ECSs. We discuss each recommendation and detail its implementation using examples from our personal experiences in the global seabird research and management communities and from our collective experience as members of several professional societies. We believe these recommendations will not only help recruit and retain ECSs as society members, but will also directly benefit the organizations themselves.


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