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p4ges - Can Paying 4 Global Ecosystem Services reduce poverty?

Visiting the UK thanks to SCCS and p4ges

In this blog, I'll tell you the story of my tour through the UK.

The objectives of the visit were to:
(1) present a poster during the "Student Conference on Conservation Science 'conference (SCCS) 2016
(2) attend a training course on the R software both of which took place in Cambridge and
(3) spend a month at Bangor University working on a scientific paper. This trip is related to the major project 'p4ges - Can Paying 4 Global Ecosystem Services values reduce poverty?' which has been ongoing in Madagascar since September 2013. My work in this project mainly concerns the assessment of the impact of habitat change on biodiversity in particular the Malagasy amphibians and reptiles. SCCS is one of the major international conferences for conservation and science and this is its 17th year.
We know that in research and conservation, the sharing of information is very important and this conference is an opportunity to share our results with our friends working in conservation around the world. The conference itself was held from 22 to 24 March 2016 preceded by three days of classes (19 to 21 March) focused on different themes including the one I attended on the use of the R-statistical software. All were held in the Department of Zoology at the University of Cambridge. During these three days, I presented a poster about the impact of habitat change on chameleons in the eastern part of Madagascar. This theme is chosen because of the importance of this large island in terms of chameleons with its 85 species (about 42% of chameleons in the world) all of which are endemic. In fact, my participation in this conference gave me a great opportunity to expand professionally as well as personally. This is the first international conference I have attended and I learned a great deal.

I also made many new great friends during the course and the conference. In addition, I also have the opportunity to meet some old acquaintances and friends, particularly other Malagasy participants and visitors during the conference. Although it was a packed programme, the conference will always remain unforgettable for me. At the moment I am in Bangor to begin my internship and to enjoy the beautiful scenery near the sea but also to face the cold. Many thanks to the SCCS teams for their technical and financial support for this trip.

Date: 6th April 2016

Raphali Andriatsimanarilafy