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8th International Aquarium Congress Opens


The 8th International Aquarium Congress (IAC) is set to open at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) on Monday 10 September 2012, hosted by the Two Oceans Aquarium.

Related: David Kimmel, COO Georgia Aquarium on Exceeding Expectations/ Two Oceans Aquarium’s Dr. Pat Garratt on the International Aquarium Congress (IAC) 2012/ Managing Guest Experience at The Monterey Bay Aquarium – David Rosenberg/ Interview with Ted A. Beattie, CEO, Shedd Aquarium 

The IAC is unique in being the only international platform for the global public aquarium community to share and learn about new developments in the fields of inter alia animal husbandry, research, technology, management, education, conservation and sustainability.

This is the first time that the IAC, which is held only once every four years, has been held in Africa or indeed the southern hemisphere. 

Highlights in store for delegates from the world’s top 120 aquariums from forty countries will be:

  • Dr Monde Mayekiso, Deputy Director General: Oceans & Coasts, Department of Agriculture, Forestry & Fisheries, will officially open the IAC.
  • “Deep down we’re all one” – a multimedia performance to kick off the conference, co-ordinated by E-TV’s Derek van Dam and conceptualised and staged by internationally renowned artist Francois le Roux (HA!Man)
  • Speeches by Dr Patrick Garratt, Managing Director of the Two Oceans Aquarium; David Green, CEO of the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, and Western Cape Ministers Alan Winde and Donald Grant.
  • Professor Camille Parmesan (Keynote Speaker): Leading climate change scientist and Nobel Peace Prize winner, Professor Parmesan will speak about “the future of oceans under a rapidly changing climate, focusing on conservation management options and the role of citizen science that could help wildlife adapt, and could potentially serve to mitigate future climate change”.
  • Dr Elin Kelsey (Keynote Speaker) will speak about “"hope" as an emerging narrative for aquariums around the world. She will propose a radical rethink of the ways we connect with the planet, drawing inspiration from studies on hope and resiliency; emerging international policies on happiness and well-being; and the revolutionary power to co-create and collaborate in the post-normal age”.
  • Emeritus Professor George Branch (Keynote Speaker): A world-renowned authority on the southern African marine environment, Dr Branch will be speaking about “the contrasting two oceans off the southern African coast; new ideas about the oceanography of our seas, recent biological changes, and the consequences of these, and how research at Two Oceans Aquarium has illuminated understanding of the ecology of the two oceans that grace our shores”.

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