Dr. David Schindel
The CBOL Secretariat Office has now officially started down the long road that will lead to the Fourth International Barcode of Life Conference in Adelaide, South Australia during the week of 26 November to 3 December.
Please keep an eye on the conference website (www.dnabarcodes2011.org) and the Connect network (under Events) for more information. The conference website is now open and we’ll be updating it constantly as the conference approaches.
CBOL Administrator Stephanie Wezowicz and I spent five days in Adelaide last week, working with the local organizing committee, scouting meeting venues and local attractions, and generally learning our way around Adelaide. Adelaide is a terrific place and the local organizers are revved up to put on a great conference. Here are my impressions.
Adelaide is an extremely compact, liveable, and fun city. This will be a big change for those of you who attended the Barcode Conferences in London, Taipei
and Mexico City. Once you make the 20-minute journey from the airport to the center of the city, you can walk everywhere (unless you want to take the free tram or bus around the downtown area). In walking around downtown you’ll go from a small business district to the State Parliament, through shopping districts, past the South Australia Museum and the Art Museum, and onto the campus of the University of Adelaide which adjoins the Botanical Garden and the National Wine Center. The Adelaide Zoo is a five-minute walk from there and everything is less than a 20-minute walk to great restaurants, including Chinatown.
Picturesque surroundings and state-of-the-art technology make the University of Adelaide an excellent venue for conference proceedings.
Australia is rapidly ramping up their barcoding activities. They have important museums in each state and many of them have been participants in barcoding initiatives like FISH-BOL and TREEBOL. A team from the University of Guelph has started a campaign to barcode the lepidoptera in the Australian National Insect Collection. The Atlas of Living Australia will be linking barcode data to their online encyclopedia and discussions for a national network are underway. The local barcoding community will have a lot to show us when we get there in late November.
We left freezing temperatures in Washington and enjoyed spectacular summer weather for five days. Late November is a great time to visit according to our local hosts.
CBOL has gathered a lot of your ideas about what you liked and disliked about our past conferences and I think the Adelaide conference responds to your input. We’re planning a total of six days of activities, including:
- Two days of pre-conference training events. These will cover informatics and lab procedures and there will be concurrent sessions for introductory courses and more advanced topics;
- Four days of conference, including:
- Three plenary sessions;
- A session devoted to viewing poster presentations;
- One session with four concurrent meetings devoted to barcoding plants, invertebrates, vertebrates, and fungi/microbes;
- Two sessions with concurrent meetings devoted to barcoding taxonomic groups;
- One session with concurrent meetings devoted to multi-taxon themes (e.g., barcoding pest species, biodiversity monitoring, environmental barcoding); and
- A HALF-DAY OF FREE TIME TO ENJOY ADELAIDE!
There’s a great wealth of things to see and do in and around Adelaide and the local organizers are developing a menu of things from which we can choose. There will be downtown tours, excursions to the beach (20 minutes away by bus), trips to nearby vineyards and wildlife parks, and many others. You’ll find general information about Adelaide and local attractions on the conference website at www.dnabarcodes2011.org and you’ll be able to sign up for activities and hotel accommodations when you register for the conference.
If you’ve never been to Australia or Adelaide, you won’t want to miss this opportunity. If you have, you’re probably already planning to attend the conference. See you there!