Earth and Space Science Informatics


This guest post was contributed by a scientist, student or a professional in the Earth, planetary or space sciences. The EGU blogs welcome guest contributions, so if you’ve got a great idea for a post or fancy trying your hand at science communication, please contact the blog editor or the EGU Communications Officer Laura Roberts Artal to pitch your idea.

Strengthening Early Career Scientists (ECS) in EGU ESSI

Strengthening Early Career Scientists (ECS) in EGU ESSI

The number of presentations from ECS in the ESSI sessions has been low during recent EGU General Assemblies. We are hence currently trying to get greater involvement and recognition for the ECS in the ESSI Division.

How to get involved as ECS in the ESSI division?

Join the ESSI ECS mailing list

We have a dedicated ESSI ECS mailing list that can be used for discussion between the ESSI ECSs. It is also used for announcements, such as dedicated meetings at the GA 2018.

Submit an abstract to an ESSI session

As mentioned above, we aim to have more ECS presenters in the ESSI sessions. The call for papers has just been published and contributions from ECSs are welcomed and encouraged. A description of how to submit an abstract is available here.

Apply for travel grants

ECSs can also apply for travel grants. Detailed information on travel grants is given here.

Become a mentor

Have you already been at previous EGU GAs? Then you can volunteer as a mentor for ECS who are attending the GA for the first time. Alternatively, if it will be your first EGU why not sign up as a mentee and gain some insider knowledge on how to get the best out of the General Assembly as well as building your network of contacts.


Do you have some news on your own research and/or on topics relevant for other ESSI ECSs? You are welcome to contribute with your own posts to the EGU ESSI blog. If you’re interested please contact us directly.

Online Meetings

We are planning to organize online meetings for ESSI ECSs. These meetings are used to get to know each other and to discuss questions and answers. The online meetings are announced on the ESSI ECS mailing list.

General information

General information and background material for ECSs is available on the general EGU ECS website.

Questions? Ideas?

If you are having ideas for the ESSI ECS community or are having any questions, feel free to use the mailing list or contact us directly.

PICO in the picture

Like everyone else, in the beginning I was skeptical of the newly introduced presentation format at the EGU – the PICO sessions. PICO stands for Presenting Interactive Content. Half talk, half poster – this is a new design that demands a completely new and unfamiliar preparation of the presenter, and yes admittedly at first this meant additional work. However, already during the creation of my first PICO presentation, I realized that the scientific content can be filled with much more life than in a poster, and with much more information than in a talk. This made me change my opinion quickly. Before the PICO gets presented, the presenter has the chance to advertise it in the so called ‘2-minute madness’. Usually they are less crazy than it sounds, but the idea is great – to force scientists to minimize the story to the key facts. Let’s be honest, nobody reads all the abstracts in the program.

Why choose a PICO session at EGU 2015?

PICO presentations at EGU 2014. (Credit: EGU/Stephanie McClellan)

So with this short advertisement the scientists have the chance to get more uninformed people into visiting their research. Later, during the PICO session, I noticed that most attendees are keen to hear more about your scientific adventure. This means, it starts like a regular oral presentation. However, pretty soon, the people start to ask specific or sometimes very specific questions like with a poster. Then you have the chance to guide the presentation into another direction, but you still have your supporting tools at your fingertips – like videos, animations, high resolution graphics, large tables, etc. Next, the questions lead into a conversation and quickly transform into a discussion, which usually attracts other scientists. A big advantage is that questions are asked at the very moment they come up, while presenting the respective slide and do not need to wait until after the talk.

For me the PICO sessions are a valuable addition to the traditional formats. What is missing? Maybe the possibility to access websites as well. Maybe a session mixture of talks, posters, and PICOs. Anyhow, I think particularly the ESSI division should push for PICOs. I cannot think of a better format to show results like in posters or talks, but at the same time have the opportunity to dig much deeper into e.g. programming languages, IT infrastructures, visualization, etc. And it is a perfect showcase of how nowadays topics – in this case scientific presentation types – are positively influenced due to informatics. ESSI should be upfront with these developments as well.

Please watch the non-interactive PICO presentation here.  The interactive version was uploaded to the EGU site.