Extra activities

Activities are included in the registration fee unless otherwise indicated.  
Please indicate which activities you wish to attend when registering.


Sunday 4th February 2018

Software Carpentry: Python masterclass for weather, ocean and climate scientists

Python is rapidly emerging as the programming language of choice for data analysis in the weather, climate and ocean sciences.  By consulting online tutorials and help pages, most researchers in this community are able to pick up the basic syntax and programming constructs (e.g. loops, lists and conditionals). This self-taught knowledge is sufficient to get work done, but it often involves spending hours to do things that should take minutes, reinventing a lot of wheels, and a nagging uncertainty at the end of it all regarding the reliability and reproducibility of the results. To help address these issues, this workshop will cover a suite of programming best practices that aren’t so easy to glean from a quick Google search:

  • Using functions to write modular, reusable code

  • Vectorisation of large array operations

  • Testing and defensive programming

  • Writing programs that can be executed from the command line

  • Tools and strategies for profiling and debugging

  • Version control 


Along the way, participants will learn how to install and manage their Python environment using conda, interact with common development environments and the Jupyter notebook, and go on a tour of the most commonly used Python libraries in the weather, climate and ocean sciences.​

Pre-requisite knowledge:

To attend this workshop, participants must already be using Python for their data analysis. They don't need to be highly proficient, but a strong familiarity with Python syntax and basic constructs such as loops, lists and conditionals (i.e. if statements) is required.

Convener: Damien Irving.

Estimated attendance: 50 maximum (Full now).

Other requirements:

  • Participants should bring their own laptop (please contact us if you are not able to do so).

  • Information has been sent to participants about software packages to be installed prior to the workshop. Contact us if you haven’t received information for this workshop.

When: Sunday 4th February 2018, 9:00am – 5:00pm.

Where: Mathews Classroom 232.

Fee: $50. This includes morning and afternoon tea. Participants can bring or buy their own lunch. Closest restaurants are located in Belmore Road or in lower campus, both within walking distance to the venue.


Australian Television Weather presenters as Climate Educators

The Monash Climate Change Communication Research Hub is embarking on a project to partner with free-to-air television television presenters across Australia to present climate information. Such a program has been very successful in the US where there are now almost 400 weathercasters hosting a climate segment. This workshop will present the findings from a survey of every weather presenter in Australia, which sought to gauge their interest in presenting climate information. This will be followed by a panel format featuring weather presenters from major capital city markets from whom we can hear directly about their experience of presenting weather and the challenges and opportunities of talking about climate change alongside the weather.

Convener: Dr David Holmes, Director, Monash Climate Change Communication Research Hub.


2:00pm – 2:45pm: Talk followed by questions – Dr. David Holmes, MCCCRH Director
2:45pm – 4:00pm: Q&A Panel with television weather presenters:

Facilitator: Professor Lawrie Zion, author of The Weather Obsession.

  • Jenny Woodward, ABC Brisbane

  • Tony Auden, 7 Brisbane

  • Liz Cantor, 7 Gold Coast

  • Graham Creed, ABC Sydney

  • Tanya Dendrinos, WIN NSW and Victoria

  • Paul Higgins, ABC Melbourne

  • Amelia Mulcahy, 7 Adelaide

When: Sunday 4th February 2018, 2:00pm – 4:00pm.

Where: Colombo Theatres (see B16 on the campus map). Closest entry is via Gate 4 on Hight St. There is free parking all day Sunday on campus. The closest parking option is the Morven Brown parking at Gate 8 (limited spots). More parking is available on Barker Street Parking Station entrance via Gate 14 (N18 on map) and Botany Street Parking Station via Gate 11 (H25 on map). 

Wednesday 7th February 2018

Expanding the influence of research: How scientists can talk to the media, politicians and stakeholders

This panel discussion aims to bring together a leading science reporter, a political advisor, a social media expert and a stakeholder relations expert to discuss the challenges and solutions to taking our work beyond the scientific community. Our panellists will reveal what type of research gets their attention and the best way to make them aware of it. It’s an opportunity to ask questions and hear from people working at the coalface of communication across a range of vitally important sectors to AMOS researchers.

Convener: Alvin Stone (UNSW).

Format: Proposed Q&A panel with invited panelists:

  • Peter Hannam (Environment Editor, Fairfax)

  • Chris Hall (former Chief of Staff and Advisor to multiple ministers)

  • Julie Delaforce (Quiip – social media guru who has worked with 60 Minutes, NAB, Coca Cola, Westpac)

  • Kerry Brewster (ABC – Lateline reporter and documentary maker, has won a Walkley award, Eureka Prize for best Enviro Journalism and a UN Media Peace Prize)

When: Wednesday 7th February 2018, 1.30pm – 3.00pm.

Where: Sir John Clancy Auditorium.

Other: Participants can submit their questions to the panel before the event. Please send your question to alvin.stone@unsw.edu.au.

Infrastructure and Climate Change Roundtable: Fixing the Climate Change Rail Gauge

(Sponsored by XDI Pty Ltd)

Both climate modellers and financial decision-makers are able to harness statistical big data tools and techniques. But as downscaling creates more data, with no agreed standards on how or which data should be used for risk analysis, there is a valley of data-death opening up between high-end creators and users. This roundtable provides a forum to discuss how new climate-modelling results can be more effectively integrated into the risk computation techniques used by engineers and financial decision makers in government and utilities.

This session will consider which outputs most respond to the needs of utility decision makers, the bridges needed to make the data relevant to key hazards, the mathematical functions and coefficients that should best be used for each parameter, and the guidelines needed to avoid pitfalls of climate and weather data in extreme event analysis. This session will also explore how we can establish data standards and sharing protocols for weather and climate change projections for infrastructure users.

Participation in this activity is by invitation only.

Convener: Rohan Hamden and Dr Karl Mallon - XDI Pty Ltd; Chris Lee - ClimateKIC Australia.

Format: Keynote presentation followed by discussions to address key topics.

Estimated Participant Numbers:​ 50 max (invited only).

When: Wednesday 7th February 2018, 2:00pm – 5:00pm.

Equity and Diversity: Bringing Courage and Mutuality to Advocacy

(Sponsored by UNSW GERL Initiative)

This event is sponsored by the UNSW Climate Change Research Centre GERL (Gender Equity Recognition Lunch) initiative.


The workshop will begin with a presentation from Dr Christine Wiedinmyer, co-founder of the Earth Systems Women’s Network (ESWN). ESWN is an international peer-mentoring network of women in the Earth Sciences. Its mission is to promote career development, build community, provide opportunities for informal mentoring and support, and facilitate professional collaborations.


Jill Currey will then provide us with strategies to bring courage and mutuality to advocacy. You will understand why sharing your perspective is important and learn what to do to increase the potential for true dialogue.  You will explore why it takes courage to be authentic and gain some tips to manage your reactivity, and create space for the other’s perspective.

The Principal of Currey & Co Consulting, Jill Currey works with senior and emerging leaders from across government, corporate, not for profit and higher education sectors. A strong focus for Jill has been her work with women. Over the years Jill has worked with 100s of women, supporting them to move past images of leadership that hold them back. Jill has created learning environments where women learn to believe in themselves, to connect with what they highly value, and move towards their career and leadership goals. Women attending her programs report experiencing higher levels of promotion, career satisfaction, recognition and confidence.

Conveners: The AMOS Equity and Diversity committee.

Format: This is an interactive workshop and open to all AMOS participants.

When: Wednesday 7th February 2018, 3:00pm – 5:00pm.

Where: Mathews Theatre B.

Other: Afternoon tea will be provided thanks to the UNSW GERL initiative in Mathews Theatre B foyer for participants who register for this workshop.

Communicating your science: A practical workshop to help deliver your message

This hands-on workshop is designed to give researchers a practical process that will make it easier for them to prepare for interviews, develop media releases and write articles for outlets like The Conversation. Participants should bring along something they are working on and that they are now considering making public. We will work through the process in groups. By the end of the workshop all participants will have a structure they can use to refine their approach to media.

Convener: Alvin Stone (UNSW).

Workshop: Around 30 participants working in groups of five.

When: Wednesday 7th February 2018, 3:00pm – 5:30pm.

Where: Mathews Classroom 231.

Thursday 8th February 2018

Using climate data from the Bureau of Meteorology

(Sponsored by the Bureau of Meteorology)

Most of you have used data from the Australia Bureau of Meteorology before, or are using it in your research right now. But how do you know if you are using the best product for the job? Do you know how the Bureau prepare, quality control and grid their data to get it to you? What's the best way to access the Bureau's dataset? What tools already exist to help your analysis? How can you access data that aren't available online?

In this workshop, data experts from the Bureau will discuss Australia's most popular climate research datasets, including:

  • The Bureau's raw and homogenised weather and climate data available online

  • Version 2 of the homogenised ACORN-SAT temperature dataset

  • The replacement of the AWAP gridded product: Australian Gridded Climate Data (AGCD)

  • BARRA: The new Bureau reanalysis


Through interactive tours of the Bureau's website and real life case studies, we'll show you how and when to use which Bureau dataset, and why.

Conveners / Presenters: Brad Murphy, Blair Trewin, Doerte Jakob, Alex Evans, Nathan Eizenberg, Linden Ashcroft.


Format: This workshop will include demonstrations of how to access and best use the Bureau's most popular and powerful weather and climate datasets. Participants are encouraged to bring their own laptops, although access to power is limited. This workshop is open to the international community.

When: Thursday 8th February 2018, 12:50pm – 2:00pm.

Where: Mathews Theatre B.

Other: Lunch will be provided at 12.30pm in the Mathews Pavilions for participants who register for this event. Thanks to the Bureau of Meteorology.

As part of the BOM Reanalysis data demonstration we will be releasing a sample dataset with 24 hours of BARRA data from 98+ parameters over two domains and taking you through three examples of how to analyse and plot our high-resolution reanalysis fields. The Jupyter notebooks we will be working off as well as the conda environment specifications will be made available during and after the workshop via the link below.

BARRA workshop demo notebooks: https://github.com/nathan-eize/AMOS2018-BARRA-data-demos

BARRA sample data available from our website: http://www.bom.gov.au/research/projects/reanalysis/

If you would like to follow along with the demonstration and you have an account on NCI then make sure you've set up your laptop to run on the dedicated NCI Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI). This way you will be able to run the notebooks interactively in the same environment and won't have to download the sample data files beforehand.

Follow these instructions to set up your laptop for NCI VDI use, https://training.nci.org.au/course/view.php?id=3. For most of the demonstration we will be using the ACCESS conda environments already set up by Scott Wales, more information here https://accessdev.nci.org.au/trac/wiki/User%20Guides/conda. If you don't have an account on NCI, don't worry, you can still get access to the code and the data to run the demos on any machine you like!


Other useful websites:


Friday 9th February 2018

Communicating weather and climate: charting a path for more effective communication

(AMOS in partnership with Bloom Communication)

Conference delegates with an interest or role in communicating weather and climate are invited to participate in a workshop that will inform ongoing AMOS initiatives to enhance weather and climate communication in Australia.

Drawing on the key points from Gavin Schmidt’s keynote (Communicating climate change: hits, misses and how we can do better), this workshop will identify Australian hits and misses, ways we can do better and the resources we need to do that.

Come along with your best examples of what’s been done well and what could have been better, as well as your ideas for more effective weather and climate communication.

Conveners: Karen Pearce and Melissa Lyne.

Format: Facilitated discussion with delegate participation.

Estimated Participant Numbers:​ 40 - 50 max.

When: Friday 9th February 2018, 9:30am – 11:00am.

WhereMathews Classroom 232.

Other: Conference delegates (whether attending the workshop or not) are invited to email examples of good climate and weather communication, lessons learned and ideas for improving climate and weather communication to Karen Pearce (karen@bloomcommunication.com.au) ahead of the workshop for inclusion in the discussion. Afternoon tea will be provided in the Mathews classroom foyer for those who registered for this workshop.

Non-linear career paths: Meet scientists outside of academia

(Sponsored by Snowy Hydro Ltd)

A life in science doesn't always follow a linear academic trajectory. Have you ever wandered what a career looks like in industry, advocacy, consulting or communications? This Q&A event highlights the diversity of careers available within the meteorology and oceanography community. Come and meet a panel of scientists outside of academia, hear about their professional journeys and learn how they use weather, climate and ocean science in their current roles.

Conveners: Johanna Speirs (Snowy Hydro Ltd) and Melissa Hart (UNSW).

Format: The event consists of brief presentations from each speaker followed by a Q&A panel.

Host: Dr Melissa Hart (UNSW).


  • Dr Marguerite Evans-Galea (Executive Director, Industry Mentoring Network in STEM)

  • Esteban Abellán (Weather Intelligence - Katestone)

  • Shirley Qin (Guy Carpenter)

  • Max Gonzalez (Weatherzone)

  • Johanna Speirs (Snowy Hydro Ltd)

  • Stephanie Downes (OEH)

When: Friday 9th February 2018, 1:30pm – 3:00pm.

Where: Mathews Theatre B.

Other: Lunch will be provided thanks to Snowy Hydro in the Mathews classroom foyer for participants who register for this event.

STEM Professionals in School​s Workshop

(Sponsored by AMOS Education and Outreach Committee in partnership with CSIRO STEM Professionals in Schools)


Don’t be just another scientist. Inspire the next generation in STEM with CSIRO!

Community engagement is fast becoming as necessary a part of research science as publishing and communication. School visits are an inspiring and fun way to promote science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) topics and careers to future generations while meeting outreach commitments.

That’s why CSIRO’s STEM Professionals in Schools wants you!

STEM Professionals in Schools (formerly Scientists and Mathematicians in Schools) is a national volunteer program managed by CSIRO that facilitates partnerships between STEM professionals (like you!) with teachers to increase student interest in STEM subjects and careers.

Being part of the program lets you share your passion and can be part of professional development. It can be highlighted in grant applications and promotions to demonstrate community engagement, as you will have a direct impact on increasing skills, knowledge and confidence in STEM, for both teachers and students. Partnerships are flexible so you determine when and what sort of activities you do together. This could include a career talk, presentation, hands-on activity and mentoring, both in the classroom or remotely.

This workshop is for Australian STEM professionals, researchers and teachers who are interested in finding out more about STEM Professionals in Schools or those who are already involved who would like to share their experiences with others. During the workshop, you will have the opportunity to develop your careers talk for schools and be provided links to resources to use in class or to start discussions.

Help spread the word about STEM and showcase STEM careers to students.

Topics that will be covered include:

  • About the STEM Professionals in Schools program:

    • Why should STEM professionals/researchers and teachers take part?​

    • Who meets the criteria for a STEM professional?

    • How to register and join a partnership.

    • My time is limited or my school is regional. Can I participate without too much inconvenience?

  • Partnership experiences and examples.

  • Breaking down stereotypes- what a scientist really does in their job.

  • Developing a Careers Talk for Schools.

  • Appropriate activities for different school levels and supporting resources.

  • Time will be allowed for participants to find out more, identify schools in need and register.

Conveners: Stephanie Downes (Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems CRC), Candice Lim (CSIRO), Angela Maharaj (UNSW).

When: Friday 9th February 2018, 3:15pm – 4:45pm.

Where: Mathews Classroom 232.

Other: Lunch will be provided thanks to AMOS Education and Outreach Committee in the Mathews classroom foyer for participants who register for this event.

For more information about the STEM program see: https://www.csiro.au/en/Education/Programs/STEM-Professionals-in-Schools

Other activities


(Included in full registration fee however you must indicate if you wish to attend when registering)

When: Monday 5th February 2018, 5:45pm onwards.


Where: Mathews Pavilion

Early Career Research Event

The Early Career Researcher (ECR) event is open to all students and ECRs (nominally 5 years post PhD) working in the meteorological, oceanographic and climate sciences. Please register for the event when you register for the AMOS-ICSHMO Conference.


Global Mobility in Climate and Weather Research

Always wanted to move overseas and gain invaluable experience in a new country? Or rather stay put but keen to build connections with international researchers to further your career?

Climate and weather research is a global discipline, with opportunities abound across all continents. But planning your next move may seem like a daunting task, with many challenges to navigate.

This Q&A panel discussion is your chance to hear from six scientists with experience in the university and government sectors spanning 5 continents. The panellists will share the professional and personal challenges and opportunities they have faced working in their respective countries and moving overseas.

Format: Q&A panel

Convener: Dr Claire Vincent


  • Julie Arblaster (Monash University, Australia)

  • Winston Chow (National University of Singapore, Singapore)

  • Stephanie Downes (University of Tasmania, Australia)

  • Ian Macadam (Office of Environment and Heritage, Australia)

  • Sarah Perkins-Kirkpatrick (University of New South Wales, Australia)

  • Regina Rodrigues (Federal University of Santa Catarina, Brazil)

When: Monday 5th February 7:00pm – 8:00pm

Where: Mathews Theatre B

AMOS Annual General Meeting

When: Tuesday 6th February 2018, 12:30pm – 1:00pm.


Where: Sir John Clancy Auditorium.

AMOS Public Forum

Join the Australian Meteorological & Oceanographic Society, in partnership with the Grand Challenge on Climate Change, for a Q&A event with a distinguished panel of international experts in weather, climate and marine science.

MC Craig Reucassel, host of ABC TV’s War on Waste. Our distinguished panel of scientists include: 

  • Gavin Schmidt, climate scientist, science communicator and Director of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies, NASA;

  • Terry Hughes, coral reef scientist and Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies;

  • Claudia Tebaldi, IPCC lead author, climate modeller at the Climate and Global Dynamics laboratory at the National Center for Atmospheric Research;

  • Greg Holland, Willis Senior Scientist, Director of the Capacity Center for Climate and Weather Extremes at the National Center for Atmospheric Research;

  • Helen Cleugh, atmospheric scientist, Director of the CSIRO Climate Science Centre.

When: Tuesday 6th February 2018, 6:30pm – 8:00pm.

Where: Sir John Clancy Auditorium, UNSW

To register for the Free Public Forum: Myth-Busting Climate Change (Tuesday 6.30pm, Clancy Auditorium) click here.


(Included in full registration fee however you must indicate if you wish to attend when registering)

Smart, casual dress. Please find your own way to one of the pick up points.

When: Wednesday 7th February 2018, 6:30pm – 10:30pm.

Pickup at King St Wharf (6.30pm).
Pickup at Circular Quay Wharf (7.15pm).
No other pickup points after this, so please don’t be late.

For more details, see the conference dinner page.

Education and Outreach Day

In-service and Pre-service teachers are invited to join the conference on our Education and Outreach Open Day on Friday 9th February. Registration is free but teachers must register using their school or .edu email address. For more info or to register go to our eventbrite page.

The Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society Inc

ABN: 47 970 713 012 

Street Address: 700 Collins Street, Docklands VIC 3008

Postal Address: PO Box 1289, Melbourne VIC 3001

Mobile: 0404 471 143 - Email: admin_officer@amos.org.au

© 2018 AMOS, Inc 

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