What we do: 8 TED-style talks about birds and saving the world

At an event in Washington, DC, this weekend, Cornell Lab directors presented a set of short, crisp, exciting talks about the work that we do. They’re a great introduction to the kinds of exciting research, conservation, and outreach that consume our lives.

Lab director John Fitzpatrick kicked things off with his argument that birds really can save the world, by capturing our imaginations and inspiring us to great things. Subsequent talks covered the contributions of citizen science to conservation policy, the enormous communicative power of high-resolution nest cameras, our unique approach to education, and more.

As a special treat, the session closed with the full Birds-of-Paradise Project lecture by Cornell Lab scientist Ed Scholes and National Geographic photographer Tim Laman. They showed some of the amazing video they collected and described the behind-the-scenes details of their eight-year project.

About 250 people attended the event, and more than a hundred viewed the event live as we streamed it online. If you missed the talks, you can watch the archived versions here. To help you navigate through the 2.5-hour video, here are the times at which each speaker begins his or her presentation:

5:34 John Fitzpatrick: Birds can save the world
22:55 Ken Rosenberg: How eBird lists affect national conservation policy
31:00 Chris Clark: Listening to whales in a noisy ocean
43:45  Miyoko Chu: Bird Cams—Hawks, herons and other stars of the small screen
52:12 Nancy Trautmann: Connecting kids with science and nature through birds
57:53 Miyoko Chu: Merlin—Can a computer ID your bird?
1:06:30 Mike Webster: Digital ornithology
1:16:10 Gerrit Vyn: Filming the Spoon-billed Sandpiper
1:26:30 Birds-of-Paradise introductory video
1:32:15 Tim Laman and Ed Scholes: Birds-of-Paradise presentation.

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