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2017 Special Events Awards

2017 Special Events Awards

2017 Special Event Awards Outcome

The AGA grants awards each year to members to support special events that further the purposes of the Association, particularly to encourage student participation.  Eligible events include specialized workshops, short courses in some aspect of organismal genetics, and meetings in areas of great current interest, but any event that would advance the purpose of the Association is eligible for support.

The AGA Council is pleased to announce the recipients of this year’s Special Events Awards:

1.  $15,200 to Maria Oliveira-Miranda, Carina Arguelles, and Elie Poulin (ReGeneC): ReGeneC XII Workshop on Conservation Genetics: New challenges in the anthropocene epoch

January 14-28, 2018

2.  $12,000 to Gordon Luikart and Robin Waples (University of Montana): ConGen 2017: Application of Next Gen Sequence Data to Understand Genetic Population Structure and Detect Natural Selection

September 25-29, 2017

3.  $10,000 to Y. Franchesco Molina-Henao and José Julián Tavera (COLEVOL): I Colombian School of Evolution & VI Colombian Symposium of Evolutionary Biology

4.  $10,325 to Maurine Neiman and Stephanie Meirmans (University of Iowa): Workshop: Science policies: how should evolutionary biology be funded?

5.  $8,400 to Jill Pecon-Slattery and Sue VandeWoude (Colorado State University): Genomics of Disease in Wildlife: A Workshop

June 3-11, 2017

6.  $9,000 to James Umen and others (Donald Dandforth Plant Science Center): Workshop on comparative genomics of volvocine algae


Special Event details:

1. Oliveira – ReGeneC Argentina

The Red de la Genética para la Conservación (the Conservation Genetics Network, or ReGeneC) is looking forward to running its 12th workshop. The XII Workshop on Conservation Genetics: New challenges in the anthropocene epoch will allow the network to continue training young scientists and strengthening relationships among network members, as well as providing support to relevant conservation genetics work in Latin America. As in 8 of 11 past workshops, support from the AGA will allow us to offer grants to 22 students attendees, encouraging the participation of individuals from a broader array of socio-economic backgrounds, from across Latin America.

2. Luikart – ConGen 2017

ConGen (short for Conservation Genetics) is a special course and workshop for Ph.D. students, post-docs, faculty, and agency biologists (e.g., USGS, USWS) to provide training in conceptual and practical aspects of population genomic data analysis. The course emphasizes research in conservation and evolutionary genomics of natural and managed populations. Students from 10-12 American Universities typically attend, and some receive college credit through the University of Montana. An additional 10-15 students from 10- 12 foreign countries also typically attend, which provides excellent international perspectives. 10- 15 expert instructors teach cutting-edge aspects of population genomic data analysis. Students are thrilled to have help analyzing their own data from experts that have developed and/or used extensively the methods and software (see, and Emphasis is on next-generation sequence data analysis (RADs, exon capture, RNAseq, and whole genome sequence analyses) and especially on the interpretation of output from recent novel statistical approaches and software programs.

3. Molina Henao – COLEVOL

The Colombian Network of Evolutionary Biologists (COLEVOL) has worked since 2005 with the goal of building knowledge-based relationships within the Colombian academic community and between it and the international research community. In 2016 COLEVOL finally became a legally constituted scientific association recognized by the Colombian legislation. COLEVOL provides opportunities whereby academics, students, and the general public, interact on evolutionary biology topics. This year we will offer the I Colombian School of Evolution and the VI National Symposium of the Colombian Association of Evolutionary Biologists. AGA funds will be used to offer travel, accommodation and research grants to Symposium participants.

4. Neiman – Science Policy

This workshop on Science policies: how should evolutionary biology be funded?, to be held at the ESEB 2017 congress in Groningen, will trigger a translatable discussion of how funding affects scientific quality and how our funding system could improve. This focus is important to all scientists and is particularly topical because of recent increased emphasis by funding agencies on societal relevance and technological-economic impact. These changes invite a systematic reflection with potential for real impact in a time when funding policies are in flux. Our workshop will support student, postdoc, and organizer conference attendance.

5. Pecon-Slattery – Wildlife Disease

Wildlife biodiversity can be drastically affected by the outbreak and transmission of disease pathogens in both natural habitats and ex situ populations, including vulnerability to anthropogenic interactions that lead to zoonotic emergence. The purpose of the inaugural Genomics of Disease in Wildlife workshop is to advance wildlife disease research through expert instruction on the application of powerful genomic tools in the study of wildlife diseases of vertebrate animals. The workshop will provide in-depth computer training using ‘real world’ next generation sequence data, and opportunities to network with colleagues and experts in wildlife biology, veterinary medicine, genomic biodiversity research and wildlife management.

6. Umen – Volvox

This interdisciplinary conference brings together an international community working on the multicellular green alga Volvox and its close relatives as a model for evolutionary transitions, multicellularity, developmental biology, motility and more.

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Special Issue: Animal Pigmentation Genetics

Edited by Associate Editors Bridgett vonHoldt, Ernest Bailey, and Eduardo Eizirik

Invited Review by Price-Walden & Stoddard:

Avian Coloration Genetics: Recent Advances and Emerging Questions

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