As Research Data Coordinator, Georgia Pickavance is responsible for growing the quality, quantity and woldwide impact of the data management tool ForestPlots.net, a bespoke database. It is designed to enable international researchers and policymakers to store, share, collaborate and analyse long-term tropical forest data.
Monitoring data on tropical forests
“My role is varied and dependent upon the needs of each funding project,” Georgia said.
“My main responsibility is to ensure that data of the highest quality underpins our research and outputs. I achieve this by training staff, students and international project partners to use ForestPlots for their individual research needs.
“I also collect, standardise and analyse tropical forest and Geographical Information Systems data myself; and work within a small team to continually improve fieldwork, data management and quality control protocols and procedures.”
Forest resilience to climate change in Peru
Georgia talked about some of her most valued career achievements so far. She said:
“I am most proud of my involvement within the MonANPeru project: Monitoring Protected Areas in Peru to Increase Forest Resilience to Climate Change. I have been responsible for co-ordinating the data management of this project from the very beginning.
“At different points throughout the project timeline I visited Peru, where I developed and delivered data management training workshops in Spanish; this was for the project Data Managers and other project participants.
I am most proud of my involvement within the MonANPeru project: Monitoring Protected Areas in Peru to Increase Forest Resilience to Climate Change.
“Two years on, several of the field and data teams are now almost entirely self-sufficient,” she added.
Georgia continued: “I am also very proud to have completed a postgraduate diploma in Geographical Information Systems (GIS), studying part time alongside my job.
“I was then able to apply these skills within my role, designing and carrying out several GIS analyses. These looked at forest fragmentation in South East Asia, and carbon fluxes in the Amazon, which then contributed to high impact publications with media coverage.”
“Don’t be afraid to ask if there is a skill you’d like to learn, or a particular project task you’d like to be involved with,” Georgia said.
“Try to match your career development goals with the School or project goals to improve your chances of promotion, or getting positive approval for the things you have asked for.”