Contributions at IPY 2012 conference in Montreal

I will be co-authoring 2 contributions at the upcoming IPY 2012 conference in Montreal, Canada (22-27 April 2012):

IPY-OASIS 2009: Bio-organic aerosols and compounds at snow-air interface
P. A. Ariya1,2, G. Kos2, R. Mortazavi2, and Visahini Kanthasami1


Volatile Organic Compounds in Snow and Frost Flowers from OASIS-Barrow 2009, Alaska
G. Kos2, V. Kanthasami1, N. Adechina1, and P.A. Ariya1,2

1  Department of Chemistry, McGill University, Montreal, PQ, CANADA, H3A 2K6
2  Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, McGill
University, Montreal, PQ, CANADA, H3A 2K6

Arctic Change 2008 Review

Arctic Change 2008
Arctic Change 2008

Last week I attended the Arctic Change meeting in Quebec City – an excellent conference organised by ArcticNet with over 900 participants presenting their results on Arctic Research. I gave a talk that was well attended and got quite a few interesting questions – most of the issues discussed I have been thinking of myself for quite a while:

T14. Quantifying the Carbon Balance of Arctic Ecosystems at Various Scales: Gregor Kos & Parisa Ariya, “(Semi)volatile Organic Compounds at Alert, Nunavut – Snow Pack and Boundary Layer Composition”

The meeting had a strong socio-cultural component to disseminate the results among those most affected by the research – the Inuit of the North. Furthermore, awareness was raised that the environment the research takes place in is the home of other people. The need for community outreach and making the results relevant for the local people was stressed often – and rightfully so.


Some impressions from EGU

I was my first EGU meeting here in Vienna (finally – after 3 years abroad I make it to a conference in my home town 😉 and my impressions were mixed.

Organisation was excellent – no problems with registration. A weekly pass for public transport was part of the registration and the venue at the Austria Centre Vienna was pleasant. No “big” book of abstracts was published this year, so I had to put a programme together in advance (or at one of the many terminals onsite), which was a good thing, because I was very well prepared once the conference started, knowing each and every session I would attend. Browsing through the programme on a computer screen is still a pain, though, if you just want to know, what is going on. 

I presented a poster and was pleasantly surprised that I had a couple of minutes during the oral session to talk about my work. I had even more time than originally allocated, because most poster presenters did not show up and so I had a little mini-presentation to get people interested. This paid off and I had a very good attendance at the poster right after the oral sessions with good discussions.

Quality of the contributions was so-so, especially at the oral sessions (bad posters are more easily by-passed). I sat through some incredibly bad presentations, not formally, but also content-wise, where speakers presented very unreliable data; discussions that I had afterwards did not elucidate the situation, but rather convince me that the methods used were indeed unreliable. While I acknowledge that the quality of a presentation is difficult to judge from an abstract, I was still surprised at the number of these contributions.

Overall though, I had a very positive impression of the meeting. People attending were mostly Europeans, so after 3 AGU meetings it was good to get an overview of European research in my own field of work. I have met two research groups, who do similar work than I do – VOC determination in snow and it was good to exchange ideas and approaches. VOC speciation in snow is still not pursued by a lot of people – lots of work for me to do. I always find conferences very stimulating, so I also found the time to work a little on my current manuscript and incorporate some of the thoughts that came up during the meeting.