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New and exciting details about SPNHC 2013

April 03, 2013

The Society for the Preservation of Natural History Collections (SPNHC) is hosting its annual meeting in Rapid City, South Dakota, June 17-22. The host institution is the Museum of Geology, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, in collaboration with a number of local and regional institutions. This meeting will highlight the care, conservation, documentation and use of natural history collections in meeting 21st century issues and concerns. The theme for this meeting is "Repositories and Partnerships in Managing Natural History Collections in the 21st Century."

Poster and platform presentations are being solicited now for general and specialty sessions; please see http://cfrspnhc2013.com/papers-posters-and-other-presentations.html for more information.

SPNHC is pleased to offer a limited number of Fitzgerald Travel Grants to eligible applicants to support attendance at the meeting. Information on how to apply is posted at http://cfrspnhc2013.com/fitzgerald-travel-grants.html. Please note that the closing date for applications is May 1st.

General registration information is posted at http://cfrspnhc2013.com/registration-information.html. The conference hotel is the Best Western Ramkota (http://cfrspnhc2013.com/hotel.html) , and the meeting sessions will be on the campus of South Dakota School of Mines and Technology. There will be evening events at the Museum of Geology and at the Journey Museum. Transportation will be provided for all events. If you have special needs or concerns, please see http://cfrspnhc2013.com/personal-information.html for directions on providing personal information. Early bird registration ends May 15.

We’re particularly interested if this is the first time you have attended a SPNHC meeting. Please also follow the instructions at http://cfrspnhc2013.com/personal-information.html to let us know if this is the case and if you would like us to pair you with a mentor who can help with introductions. We will have a newcomers’ breakfast on Wednesday, June 19.

The week will begin with the option of several day trips to showcase the natural history wealth of the Badlands and Black Hills region on June 17. Information on these can be found at http://cfrspnhc2013.com/day-trips.html.

SPNHC committee and specialty group meetings will be held on Tuesday, June 18. More information will be posted about these soon. Whether you are new to SPNHC, or you are a long-time member, the Society wants you to get involved and joining a committee is a great way to do so. Please let us know by contacting the local committee at the email address below.

As stated, the theme for this meeting is "Repositories and Partnerships in Managing Natural History Collections in the 21st Century." We will focus on the issues surrounding ownership, stewardship, and stakeholders in collections care in a special session on Wednesday, June 19. This will include the construction of dedicated repository buildings, the agreements needed for the management of natural history collections by a repository partner, and the rights and responsibilities of multiple stakeholders and owners in collections care. Your contributions are welcome.

As part of the SPNHC meeting, iDigBio and the Natural Science Collections Alliance (NCSA) will host a symposium on digitization and dissemination of natural history data. No separate registration is needed for SPNHC meeting participants to attend this symposium; more information is posted at http://cfrspnhc2013.com/idigbio-and-nsca-symposium.html. This will be organized into two sessions on Thursday, June 20:
Morning: Introduction to Digitization and Dissemination of Natural History Data: iDigBio and other initiatives
Afternoon: Diverse Uses for Natural History Collections

iDigBio is also co-sponsoring the SPNHC Demo Camp session on Friday, June 21. Demo Camp provides a venue for promotion of technological solutions to advance the field of museum curation with broad applications for biology and biodiversity informatics. Computer demonstrations are welcomed in any technologies relevant to biologists, collections managers, or biodiversity information managers. Technologies demonstrated may include, among other things, collections/ transaction management software, data portals for biocollections consortia, georeferencing applications, and programs for analysis of data/ images. DemoCamp presentations should feature the latest developments in currently available products/ software/ applications as well as ongoing research projects and prototypes. More information is posted at http://cfrspnhc2013.com/demo-camp.html.

A workshop on in situ conservation will be co-hosted by the Mammoth Site of Hot Springs, Inc., on June 22. The focus will be on the strategies used to maintain sites of scientific interest as they are found, rather than removing specimens to collections, and the special conservation issues that arise. More information can be found at http://cfrspnhc2013.com/in-situ-conservation.html. Your contributions are welcome.

Rapid City is centered in a beautiful and diverse region of South Dakota. Travel information can be found at http://cfrspnhc2013.com/travel-to-rapid-city.html. We encourage you to take time before and after the SPNHC meeting to view the natural and cultural richness of the region.

We are looking forward to a productive and enjoyable meeting. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact the Local Committee at this email address.