Estelle Razanatsoa attends PAGES conference, Spain, 7-14 May 2017

23 May 2017 - 14:15

Estelle Razanatsoa, PhD Candidate at the Plant Conservation Unit, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Cape Town (UCT) recently attended two joint International meetings organised by Past Global Changes (PAGES) and the Quaternary Terrestrial Environments group (Pyrenean Institute of Ecology-CSIC). The Young Scientists Meeting (YSM) and the Open Science Meeting (OSM) were held in Spain from 7-14 May 2017.

Young Scientists Meeting venue Morillo de Tou, Spain

Co-supervised by Associate Professor Lindsey Gillson (UCT), Dr. Stephan Woodborne (iThemba LABS, Johannesburg) and Dr. Malika Virah-Sawmy (Luc Hoffmann Institute), Estelle had the opportunity to present her work titled, “The relative impact of climate change and human land-use on the ecosystem in Southwest Madagascar” in the form of oral presentation during the YSM (7-9 May 2017) and poster presentation during the OSM (9-13 May 2017).

Estelle presenting her poster at the Open Science Meeting

The 3rd YSM held at the beautiful village of Morillo de Tou gathered around 80 early career researchers. It provided a platform for young scientists to network and get feedback related to their work from their peers. In addition, the break-out sessions and discussions dealt with the common challenges faced by the paleo-research community. They included science communications, the relevance of paleo-research to solve socio-economic problems, funding and opportunities for early career scientists.

Group photo of Young Scientists Meeting participants

The 5th OSM was held in the town of Zaragoza. It is a multi-disciplinary platform where researchers share their results on past global changes. It gathered around 900 researchers from around the world. The meeting hosted several sessions on past global change at a wide range of timescale and from approach (proxy, models). Estelle was particularly interested in the sessions related to environmental change, disturbance (human activities, volcanoes, herbivores) in the southern hemisphere with the scale of the Holocene as they were more relevant to her research. She has also attended a session related to climate reconstruction from the various proxies.

Group photo of the Open Science Meeting participants

During the closing ceremony at the OSM, Estelle received a prize for being one of the best oral presentations during the YSM. Overall, She benefited in attending both meetings. Not only did she feel that she received constructive feedback and advice on her work but also that she had the opportunity to interact with scientists in her field at various stages of their career.

Left:  Estelle receiving the prize as one of the best oral presentation during the Young Scientists Meeting. Right: Young Scientists Meeting award winners for best poster and oral presentations.

Thanks to PAGES and the Applied Centre for Climate and Earth Systems Science (ACCESS) for providing the funds that enabled Estelle to attend the meeting.

Congratulations to PAGES and Quaternary Terrestrial Environments group (Pyrenean Institute of Ecology-CSIC) of YSM and OSM for the successful event that they organised.

Details about the conference are available at:
And also #PAGES17 on twitter for some great insights.


~ Article written by Estelle Razanatsoa. Photographs provided by Estelle, Angela Wade, and PAGES official photo.