It was a dynamic and productive start of 2020 for Q-quatics! To start the year on the right footing, a Board of Trustees meeting was scheduled on January 13th but due to the eruption of Mt. Taal resulted in a 1-day delay in Dr. Cornelia Nauen’s (President, Mundus Maris) flight and changes in date (January 14) and venue (Los Baños to Makati) of the meeting. Dr. Nauen and Dr. Deng Palomares (Program Manager, Sea Around Us and Science Director, Q-quatics) flew all the way from Belgium and Canada, respectively, to chair and co-chair the BOT meeting held with Ms. Flor Maclean (Treasurer, BOT), Dr. Benjie Vallejo (Secretary, BOT) and Mary Ann Bimbao (Executive Director, Q-quatics). Afterwards, a general staff meeting was convened to disseminate the results of the BOT meeting. A rice-fish meeting between key employees of IRRI and Q-quatics followed (January 15th) to jumpstart project collaborations.
By the end of January, visitors from partner agencies started pouring in. Dr. Gabriel ‘Gabe’ Vianna arrived on the 23rd and is staying until the 9th of February to learn how to apply and run the stock assessment models. Gabe is a Post-doctoral Fellow at Sea Around Us – Indian Ocean at the Oceans Institute of the University of Western Australia (UWA) in Perth.
By February 2, Dr. David Tickler (Researcher, Flourishing Oceans initiative of Minderoo Foundation) and Mr. Simon-Luc Noël (Research Assistant at Sea Around Us) arrived at the Q-quatics head office in Los Baños, Laguna, Philippines. The purpose of David’s visit was primarily to get updates on project work progress and discuss with Deng and the team about preparations for a Minderoo workshop in April 2020. On the other hand, Simon will be working with the Qq IT group on a routine to automate large-scale catch reconstructions until the 12th of April.
To give our guests a warm welcome, a greet-and-meet event was held on 3 February 2020 (Monday, 4PM) at the IRRI Khush Hall conference room. It was also an opportunity taken to celebrate and congratulate Deng Palomares for her Faculty of Science Excellence in Service Award from UBC given in recognition of her contributions with significant impact on achieving UBC’s science mission.