2015 ESAI Summer newsletter
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Welcome to the ESAI Newsletter - Summer 2015

Welcome to the latest edition of the ESAI ezine. As highlighted previously, we are now launching a new format which I hope you find is more user-friendly and integrates better with the ESAI web site I would like to thank Elizabeth O’Reilly for developing this new layout and editing it. Thanks also to Sinead Macken and all the contributors for creating the content. This is a once off general distribution. In order to receive this quarterly newsletter in future please subscribe here

At the recent ESAI AGM, held during Environ 2015 at IT Sligo, we had some changes in the membership of the Council. I extend my good wishes to new members Dr Ronan Courtney (UL, host of Environ 2016), Dr Andy Fogarty (AIT, host of Environ 2017) and Dr Yvonne Lang (postdoc representative). I would like to acknowledge the work of Dr Paul Bolger who stepped down from the ESAI Council. He previously served as Chair and has done excellent work in developing the ESAI to another level.
The annual "ESAI Postgraduate Researcher of the Year" competition is being held again in 2015 and we have launched another new initiative – the “ESAI Grassroots Workshop Support Scheme” which is kindly funded by the EPA and targeted at assisting postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers in organising relevant environmental workshops. Details of both initiatives are outlined in this ezine.
In terms of recent events, our flagship Environ 2015 was held in IT Sligo in April and we supported two other conferences in June –  “Peatlands - A New Conversation” with the Irish Peat Society and “Food Processing Waste: Maximising Hidden Resources for Sustainable Food Processing” with UCD Institute of Food and Health. Great credit is due to Dr Frances Lucy and her team at IT Sligo for co-ordinating a very successful Environ 2015, the highlights of which are outlined in this newsletter. We are already looking forward to Environ 2016 at University of Limerick.

ESAI Chairperson
Dr Tom Curran

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Are you the ESAI Postgraduate Researcher of the Year 2015?

As well as the prestigious title, our winner will receive €500  
Deadline: August 31st 2015


In its second year the 'ESAI Postgraduate Researcher of the Year Award' for ESAI members was launched at Environ 2015 in IT Sligo.

Applications will be accepted from students doing either a PhD or a Masters degree by research in an environmental topic. Each application will be evaluated under three criteria:

- Scientific excellence and originality
- Impact (economic/environmental/societal)
- Dissemination (conferences, outreach, media)

Download the application form Here

Environ 25: Sustainability and Opportunities for Change

The 25th Irish Environmental Researchers Colloquium (Environ 2015) was held at IT Sligo from April 8th to 10th and was co-hosted by the School of Science and the Environmental Sciences Association of Ireland (ESAI). 
The ENVIRON colloquium is the largest annual gathering of environmental researchers in Ireland with over 280 researchers attending this year. The event continues to provide a wonderful platform for postgraduate students and postdoctoral researchers to present their research to a wide audience. Since its establishment, one of the main strengths of the colloquium has been that it attracts delegates from a wide variety of disciplines providing a unique opportunity for specialist researchers to learn what is happening outside their own research area.
In today’s research world there is an increasing emphasis to tackle societal challenges and impacts, in other words to look beyond our laboratory and field work, and by engaging with stakeholders, find sustainable solutions to real life issues. This was reflected in the theme of this 25th colloquium, ‘Environ 25: Sustainability and Opportunities for Change’. The colloquium theme addressed the need to review environmental change since 1991. Continue Reading...  

Prize Winners at Environ 2015 

Best Overall Presentation

Exploring the past dynamics of tree populations in Europe
Alwynne H McGeever* and Fraser JG Mitchell
*Corresponding Author: Department of Botany and Trinity Centre for Biodiversity Research, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 2. 


Best Water Presentation

Improving drinking water quality in developing nations using a domestic treatment method
Greg Beechinor, Deborah V. Chapman
School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University College Cork


Best Biodiversity Presentation

Typology of a High Nature Value farmland region in a Northern Atlantic pastoral area
Pamela Boylea, Michael Gormallyb, Caroline Sullivana, Margaret Hayesb, James Morana
a Centre for Environmental Research Innovation and Sustainability, Department of Environmental Science, School of Science, Institute of Technology, Sligo, Ash Lane, Sligo, Ireland
bApplied Ecology Unit, School of Natural Sciences, National University of Ireland Galway, Galway, Ireland
Corresponding Author:
Pamela Boyle 


Best Overall Poster

Kate Moore1, Kimberley Popek1, Frank McMahon2 & Jan-Robert Baars1
1UCD School of Biology and Environmental Science, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland.
2National Parks and Wildlife Services, Killarney National Park, Muckross House, Killarney, Co. Kerry, Ireland.


Best Waste Presentation

Developing a best practice resource efficiency toolkit for the Irish construction sector.  
Jan Gӧttsche
 School of Building and Civil Engineering, GMIT. 

Best Soils Presentation

Is mite community structure a good indicator of soil biodiversity?
Tara Dirilgen
School of Biology & Environmental Science, UCD, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland


ESAI Grassroots Workshop Support Scheme

Fancy €600 to organise your own environmental research workshop?  
Next assessment deadline: August 31st 2015

The ESAI, with the support of the EPA, are delighted to announce our new Grassroots Workshop Support Scheme.

The scheme provides funding to postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers to organise a workshop in the broad environmental research area. The scheme is open to postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers who are members of the ESAI and who are conducting research relevant to the EPA remit.

Workshops are essential for the dissemination of research, knowledge exchange, development and exposure of early career researchers and for establishing new collaborations. They are a key networking tool, and an opportunity for early-stage researchers to increase their profile within a field of study.

More information and application form can be found Here

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