When I am talking about a massive large-scale event which feels very small. Which covers loads of topics, yet is very specific. An event which is attended by juniors and seniors alike; PhD’s, postdocs, full profs and even consultants. Which is focused on one main topic. A topic that is booming business nowadays! YES! I’m talking about the general assembly of the European Geosciences Union! But we just call it EGU…
Me and other colleagues went to Vienna to present and discuss our research with likeminded colleagues from 108 countries (see figure below). Almost 12.000 people visited the EGU and presented 8.489 posters and 4.870 orals in 577 unique scientific sessions ranging from Social Hydrology to Wetland Biogeochemistry. It was well organized and due to the number of unique sessions, the EGU felt small, yet was very large.
For me, this was the first big conference I attended and I didn’t came empty-handed to Vienna. I constructed and printed a poster beforehand and could present it already in a session on the first day which was called “Biogeochemical cycles in hydromorphic and agro-forestal soils”. Those of you who have read my previous blog-posts will know that my research perfectly fitted in this session. Generally, poster sessions enhance discussion with scientists familiar with the subject you presenting. These discussions will help improve your research further.
Do not think the EGU stops after the fifth block (which ends around 19h)! Although there are no posters and orals to attend, networking and talking about science proceeds in the restaurant or in the pub until midnight (but we were never too late for the first block the following morning, around 8:30h…). What better way is there to interact with people! All-in-all, I can safely say that attending the EGU was a great experience which was fun, challenging and useful at the same time!