Baltic Diversity Notes - BONUS BIO-C3
This week´s entry will be a shorter greeting from Copenhagen and Stockholm Arlanda airports, as I am on my way to Finland and Åbo to visit my “home” university (Åbo Akademi University) and the benthos research group lead by professor Erik Bonsdorff.
My visit to Åbo is the first since I moved south to Copenhagen and I really look forward to it. I have a very tight (and hopefully productive) schedule, filled with meetings about ongoing manuscripts, project catch up with colleagues and the Master student I am currently supervising.
But first off is the dissertation of my fellow PhD colleague Henna Rinne, who is defending here PhD thesis entitled “Macroalgae across environmental gradients – tools for managing rocky coastal areas of the northern Baltic Sea” tomorrow. The opponent, and the one who is going to tease Henna with a lot of questions on her research, is professor Britas Klemens Eriksson from the University of Groningen. I look very much forward to this! Especially since the thesis is a proof that the data, that I also have been involved in collecting many years ago as a trainee at Wildlife and Parks Finland (also called Metsähallitus), is coming to scientific use, improving our understanding of coastal rocky shore habitats. I might also add that I am eagerly waiting for the “after party”. As the general tradition in Finland and at our department stipulates, a dinner party in the honour of the opponent is arranged and enjoyed by family, colleagues and fellow PhD students. This usually includes good food, some snaps accompanied by a lot of singing (we are Finnish after all…), nice speeches and the infamous program by fellow students (Henna be prepared…).
While waiting to board, I also started reflecting upon my first months as a postdoc. I’ve come to realize that it’s tough to throw oneself into a new research environment and in a way “start over”, with a new focus and research topic. But if you just dare to do it and take it all in, it is very rewarding!
I think I am also fully starting to understand that one of the most important things with the (first) post doc is networking and getting new inputs, ideas and collaborators. This is something I definitely feel I am experience now and will tell you more about next week, so stay tuned!
Now off to the North (Finland: show me some snow!),