SAIAB News » Seminar: Dr Sarah Viana: 8th August 2018

DIFS/ SAIAB Seminar Series 2018

Date: Wednesday, 8 August 2018

Time: 10.30am

Venue: Lecture Room, SAIAB

Dr Sarah Viana:

Yes, WE women CAN describe shark species too!

Over 400 million years of evolutionary history of Chondrichthyes reflects its successful ability to adapt to a variety of marine, estuarine and freshwater realms. Sharks, rays and chimaeras currently comprise over 1,200 species with distributions worldwide. Despite the diversity of the group, gender diversity is not reflected in the profile of scientists that study its species.

Authorship, taxonomic revisions, checklists and redescriptions of species for this group are historically assigned to male experts, calling attention to the lack of scientific interest and collaborative inclusion of women in the field.

To celebrate National Women’s Day this seminar will focus on the contributions of female experts to the knowledge about the Chondrichthyan diversity with special focus on developing countries like South Africa and Brazil. I will discuss the challenges and opportunities of becoming a female shark taxonomist. Participation, inclusion and representation of women are suggested in order to address the gap of gender diversity in shark taxonomy.

Researching deep-sea shark taxonomy of Southern African species

Sarah is a marine fish taxonomist with a PhD in Zoology from the University of São Paulo, Brazil and currently a SAIAB Honorary Research Associate. Her research involves systematics, evolution, biogeography, taxonomy and conservation of species of sharks, skates and rays from Brazil and Southern Africa.  She is a member of the group ‘Women in Ichthyology’ from Brazil that discusses and embraces gender diversity and strength representation and academic recognition of female scientists, especially taxonomists, in the field.

 You can follow Sarah Viana @sviana_sharks