Great to be at this conference with two of my Dalhousie MES research trainees, Kristina and Simon, thanks to the support of the Canadian Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSRHC). Yesterday, Simon presented his thesis research on farmer perceptions of wetlands, based on in situ interviews with Annapolis Valley farmers, testing the implications of environmental differences. He used an ecosystem services framework in his qualitative coding, and comparing the prevalence of those with TEEB valuation data, showing how important it is to get away from focusing only on the services that can be quantified monetarily. His presentation was well-received, one of a number of interesting sessions on farmer perceptions and identity. I enjoyed, for instance, Fred Saunders‘ reflection on a fragmentation in what it means to be a ‘good farmer’ in Sweden, in the same session as Simon, and Matt DeAngelo‘s plan to survey Oregon farmers about BMPs to improve water quality upstream of Portland, to potentially inform payments for ecosystem services (PES).
ISSRM conference planners have done a great job of encouraging networking through formal mentoring and workshops, and lots of mingle time with social lubricants and good food, the pursuit of which otherwise drives people away from some conferences, fragmenting those opportunities to connect. Great to have my students introducing me to people I should meet, as often as I am introducing them.