Yellow block.

The VII Southern Connection Congress welcomes you to the University of Otago Dunedin New Zealand

26th February 2013
University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand

The organising committee of the VII Southern Connection Congress would like to thank all those who attended, presented and volunteered at the congress for their participation in what was acknowledged as a very successful conference. There were over 300 attendees from around the world, four days of excellent presentations , informative field trips and opportunities to renew connections and friendships.
The next congress will be held in Chile (the venue is yet to be decided) in three years time.

We hope to see you there.

20th January 2013
University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand

When orientating yourself on the downloadable campus map please look for Castle lecture theatre complex (PDF) map ref F5 building 57
UNICOL can be found at G6.  Students wearing blue VII Southern Connection T shirts will be on campus to direct you.

If you wish to stay at UNICOL and have not yet booked we will be unable to accommodate you on Sunday night. Please book at registration and we will organise your room from Monday night onwards.

The registration desk will be open in the University College (UNICOL) common room from 3pm on Sunday 20th January.

The address for UNICOL is 315 Leith Street, North Dunedin 9016 and the phone number is 03-479 5580. On the campus map UNICOL is at G6.

Taxis or shuttles (which leave after every plane) will drop you at the main door.

If you are arriving on Monday the registration desk will be in the Castle Complex. On the campus map this is F5 building 57. Please look out for students in blue VII Southern Connection T shirts, they are there to help.

If you wish to order a T Shirt there will be an opportunity at registration on Sunday and Monday morning.

Public Lecture: Southern Hemisphere biodiversity in a changing climate: 2050 & beyond
23rd of January 2013, 7.30pm. Castle 2 lecture theatre.

Professor Leslie Hughes will give a public lecture on 23rd of January at 7.30pm in Castle 2

Lesley HughesProfessor Lesley Hughes is an ecologist in the Department of Biological Sciences, Macquarie University who researches the impacts of climate change on species and ecosystems. She is a lead author on the IPCC fourth and fifth assessment reports, a member of the Australian Government’s Land Sector Carbon & Biodiversity Board and commissioner on the federal Climate Commission

      Professor Hughes will give a public lecture entitled Southern Hemisphere biodiversity in a changing climate: 2050 & beyond

The distributions, abundance, and life cycles of species and the structure and composition of ecological communities are already responding to the climatic changes experienced over the past few decades.  Many future impacts are expected to be negative, including shrinkage of geographic ranges, increasing fragmentation of distributions, altered competitive regimes with invasive species, and increased extinction rates. These impacts will be imposed on species and systems already stressed by human disturbance. This talk will discuss what we know and don’t know about the potential for the biota of the Southern Hemisphere to adapt and the way in which management policy and practice must also adapt in a warming world.


21 - 25 January 2013
University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand

Southern Connection links scientists interested in the natural sciences across the Southern Hemisphere. To date topics have included biogeography, ecology, conservation, ecophysiology, invasions, ethnography, phylogenetics, phylogeography and Earth and ocean processes. The aim is to learn from shared and divergent biotas and cultures, and their histories in different lands and oceans, in order to contribute solutions to sustaining species and ecosystem services.

Southern lands and oceans: life on the edge?

Lighthouse of top of a cliff. Across land and sea, southern species, ecosystems and resources are under growing pressure from changing climate, extractive use and human populations.

The theme of the conference acknowledges the rapid changes occurring in many ecosystems and the novel environmental conditions being experienced. It also recognises the distinctive climates, biotas, and human settlement patterns that unfolded after the breakup of Gondwana.

Finally, the theme acknowledges that in New Zealand, life has literally evolved on the edge of the Pacific and Australian tectonic plates.

20 years of Southern Connection

Looking down a valley. The twentieth anniversary of Southern Connection will be celebrated with a stimulating conference programme and a number of exciting social events.

Not only will you hear from internationally respected scientists including Christian Körner (alpine plant ecophysiology), Alexander Schmidt (evolution of land plants and development of terrestrial ecosystems) and Janet Wilmshurst (ecological changes that occurred on pristine island ecosystems following initial human settlement) but there is a wide ranging programme of symposia and papers.

Topics range from temperate grasslands to New Caledonia, Southern radiations to responses of amphibians and reptiles to a changing climate, Conservation of species for cultural practices to learning about Wilding tree management, Patterns of diversity in Southern rivers to the Ecological consequences of late Quaternary Southern Hemisphere extinctions.

Please visit the Programme page for the full line-up of speakers and symposia confirmed so far.

Start planning your trip to Dunedin

Registration opens May 2012

Mark the dates in your travel calendar, check the pre and post conference tours, read up about what you can do in New Zealand, and plan to attend what is invariably a stimulating, informative and enjoyable conference.


Kath Dickinson
Department of Botany
University of Otago
PO Box 56
Dunedin 9054
New Zealand

Bill Lee
Landcare Research
Private Bag 1930
New Zealand


© VII Southern Connections
Congress 2013

Department of Botany
University of Otago
PO Box 56
Dunedin 9054
New Zealand