Insights on Attending International Virtual Conference during COVID-19 Pandemic

Written by:

Navya V Nair

Graduate Student, SEED

These are unusual times that will challenge us to work together, seek help, and provide support. It was a great opportunity for me to attend the interesting and engaging international conference organized by V2V partner Lagos State University, Ojo, Nigeria from 2nd – 4th December 2020. The theme was “The Roles of Science and Technology in Combating Current and Future Global Challenges”. I feel honored to be included in the session with my colleagues Aishwarya, Joyce, Rosina & Valeria for presenting our research representing V2V Partnership and the University of Waterloo. 


I consider this chance as an important part of my academic life to improve our work and think from various perspectives. Even though virtual, it may also feel like a frightening experience with all the emphasis on getting papers accepted and the tension of presenting our work in front of experts in a different field. The event helped us in improving our communication skills, realizing various perspectives on our subject area as well as meeting people with various academic interests. Some of our research presentations can be accessed using the recording of the event available on YouTube (starting from 1:34 to 2:09). 


On Day 2, we had a plenary session by Dr. Prateep Nayak on COVID-19 and Vulnerability to Viability Issues in Small-Scale Fisheries Social-Ecological System. Interdisciplinarity in small-scale fisheries was discussed in this session along with exploring the effects of the COVID-19 scenario in fisheries. This first part of the discussion can be viewed here (starting from 2:53-3:00) and the second part is available here (26:02-42:00).


On the last day of the conference, we had an amazing workshop led by Dr. Prateep Nayak on ‘Multiple challenges of Small-Scale Fisheries and Opportunities’ where we had a chance to discuss further on the various aspects of vulnerabilities that exist in the fisheries sector, how can it be addressed and the diverse opportunities that exist to attain sustainability. The workshop discussion can be viewed here (1:00- 1:30). 


As we spend more time on the online platform now, I hope that all of us will have a chance to explore such conferences or courses where we can build our knowledge base on the research topics that we work on. I look forward to more such opportunities where I can present my work in this new year 2021.