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Bio-acoustic Structure, a NIMBioS Investigative Workshop, needs Data Scientists – Call for Applications


This workshop will bring together experts in bio-acoustics with mathematicians and computer scientists with expertise in classification, clustering, and information theory to develop a unified approach. Apply by March 5.



NIMBios
The National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS) is now accepting applications for its Investigative Workshop "Bio-acoustic Structure", to be held June 25-27 at NIMBioS.

Bio-acoustic Structure Objectives: Acoustic repertoires may serve as a central component for social cohesion, foraging, and reproduction; in turn, these sounds may reflect population or species boundaries for many taxa. As acoustic monitoring has increased in popularity, so has interest in using this data to identify population structure and quantify biological diversity. In cases where it is difficult to obtain other biological samples, acoustic data may be the only source of information from which population structure can be inferred. Historically, acoustic research on different taxa has proceeded independently, utilizing different features and developing different methods for classification or quantifying regional differences. Additionally, while it is clear that there is a genetic component to some bio-acoustic features, the degree to which they are shaped by the environment or can be used as a proxy for relatedness is still uncertain.

In order to make progress on the promise of using acoustics to characterize population structure, this workshop will bring together experts in bio-acoustics of multiple taxa, including birds, frogs, primates, and cetaceans, with mathematicians and computer scientists with expertise in classification, clustering, and information theory to develop a unified approach. This will be accomplished by: 1) compiling guidelines of best practices for designing acoustic surveys, 2) reviewing acoustic features of each taxon useful for identifying regional and taxonomic differences, and 3) reviewing methods for quantifying and comparing information content, generating classification models, and identifying biologically significant clusters. The results of this workshop will describe the current state of using acoustics to assess population structure, create a community bridging taxonomic disciplines, and provide new non-invasive tools for conservation.

Location: NIMBioS at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Co-Organizers: Frederick Archer and Shannon Rankin, Southwest Fisheries Science Center, La Jolla, CA

For more information about the workshop and a link to the online application form, go to www.nimbios.org/workshops/WS_bioacoustics

Participation in NIMBioS workshops is by application only. Individuals with a strong interest in the topic are encouraged to apply, and successful applicants will be notified within two weeks after the application deadline. If needed, financial support for travel, meals, and lodging is available for workshop attendees.

Application deadline: March 5, 2018

The National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS) (www.nimbios.org) brings together researchers from around the world to collaborate across disciplinary boundaries to investigate solutions to basic and applied problems in the life sciences. NIMBioS is sponsored by the National Science Foundation, with additional support from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

Eric Archer, Ph.D.
Southwest Fisheries Science Center (NMFS/NOAA)
8901 La Jolla Shores Drive
La Jolla, CA 92037 USA
Marine Mammal Genetics Group: swfsc.noaa.gov/mmtd-mmgenetics
GitHub: github.com/ericarcher

Adjunct Professor, Marine Biology
Scripps Institution of Oceanography
University of California, San Diego
profiles.ucsd.edu/frederick.archer