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Shifting Tides Project: Citizen Science and Marine Ecology Symposium

Environment & Nature
Shifting Tides Project: Citizen Science and Marine Ecology Symposium
Event Description

Citizen science is a new way to get involved and learn about our local places. It is also a way for local people to contribute to scientific research that generates new knowledge or understanding. This helps to build the potential to bring together science, policymakers, and society to make decisions about specific places. Learning about ways to become a citizen scientist can turn a walk along the shore into a study of marine life since a lot can be learned from the objects and creatures washed on the tide.

This event will be an introduction to some of the opportunities for people around Carlingford Lough to get involved with citizen science, from beaches to rockpools and even the very bottom of the sea.

The speakers, panels and discussion groups, will look at ways that communities across the island have utilised citizen science in the protection and restoration of their local marine environments. There will be opportunities to engage with experts and we will explore the possibilities for combining science with the arts in understanding the sea as the Shifting Tides project develops in 2024-2025 in Carlingford Lough

Registration for the event will start at 9.30 am for a 9.45 start and will run to 3.30 pm. There are some optional activities after the event, details will be provided on the day.



  • Welcome and introduction to the Shifting Tides project by Suzie Cahn
  • Screening of Fair Seas short film: The Kingdom of Kerry
  • Maharees Conservation Association with Martha Farrell
  • Panel discussion about citizen science and community action led by Alexander McMaster
  • Introduction to citizen science through Explore Your Shore initiative with Dave Wall
  • ‘The Limpet and the Anthropocene’ performative art talk by Yvanna Greene

Lunch provided


  • Dive Ireland Underwater Photography Exhibition
  • Workshops on community action, citizen science, art and ecology.


Alexander McMaster is a writer, marine ecologist and scientific diver. His work is featured in The Irish Times, RTE Radio and Geographical Magazine, and he is a co-director of Kosamare, an environmental NGO in the Ionian Sea. He will introduce ways that people around the lough can get involved with citizen science through the Shifting Tides project.

Martha Farrell is a founding member and Director of the coastal community group Maharees Conservation Association CLG: Registered Charity and Winner of the National Clean Coasts An Taisce Ocean Hero ‘Group of the Year’ Award 2018. The association engages a wide-ranging network of volunteers and is devoted to protecting the unique coastline and natural heritage of the Maharees, raising awareness of the cultural and ecological importance of the area and ensuring the viability of the Maharees community.

Yvanna Greene is an Irish artist and researcher, based on the east coast of Ireland, engaged in project-based, multi-media work that crosses disciplines. Her practice combines research with nature field studies, including drawing and making, to explore the interconnectedness between all entities and emphasise the link between human and planetary health. Yvanna will share one of her recent performative lectures created to provide information while challenging audiences’ perception of the more-than-human world and encouraging reflection on what we know and how we may know.

Dain McParland is a veteran Scientific Diver, Instructor and the Founder of Oceanauts Diving, an SSI Dive Centre located along the shore of Carlingford Lough. Dain has nearly two decades as a diving professional with over a decade of that in the Middle East as a Marine Research Specialist & Dive Safety Officer for New York University Abu Dhabi. He hopes to share his expertise and train new divers to be passionate about protecting our marine ecosystems.

Claire Casey is the Northern Ireland coordinator of SeaSearch, a citizen science project for divers and snorkelers to gather data for marine research.

Dave Wall is the citizen science officer at the National Biodiversity Data Centre. He is responsible for the Explore Your Shore! and Dragonfly Ireland 2019-2024 citizen science projects. He also takes the lead on developing the Data Centre’s work programme on citizen science and all marine biodiversity activities.

This is a free event but places are limited.

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