AHEAD Update – October 29, 2003

Dear AHEAD Invitees -

I hope you are all doing well. Just a brief update, mostly related to the Proceedings, seed grants, and to an informal follow-up meeting coming up at Onderstepoort.

* I should again note that if you wish to be removed from this e-mail list, please just let me know. My hope is to keep AHEAD Invitees up-to-date on developments post-Durban over time, but I certainly understand if anyone wants to opt out of receiving such messages.

*I have received several folks' comments on the draft Working Group Notes- thank you. While the deadline for comment was October 22nd, I am willing to give anyone more time if you let me know you are still working on them (as a reminder, please use 'track changes'). We want them to be as accurate as possible. As I mentioned earlier, our current thinking is that these Working Group Notes should ultimately:
– serve as templates for those of you interested in moving some of the project ideas forward;
– be incorporated into the AHEAD Proceedings, along with the full papers, etc. Thanks for your ongoing assistance with this. We really hope you will evaluate many of the ideas you generated and continue to develop them into real programs. That is certainly a higher priority than the Proceedings, but we are hoping a formal proceedings will help catalyze action and buy-in from a broader constituency over time.

*Please note that the WCS Field Veterinary Program does have some AHEAD seed grant funding available. If some support might be helpful in catalyzing progress on some of the project ideas generated in Durban, please let me know.

*Some of you have requested extensions for your full paper submissions (they were requested by October 15th). As long as I know you are working on them, that's of course no problem. If you are still planning on submitting a paper but have not let me know the likely submission date, please do let me know as soon as possible. Thanks.

*All papers that have been received are in the process of being reviewed by colleagues, with a requested return date of November 5th if at all possible. Thanks to all of the volunteer reviewers! If anyone else would like to help review full papers, please let me know.
*Your patience on the Proceedings is much appreciated. Some of you will likely get your manuscript submissions back for further revisions, as with any peer-review process. It will also take some time to get everything done, organized and then off to IUCN for the publication preparation phase. We will try to keep things moving along as quickly as we can, recognizing how busy you all are.
*We are still in the process of updating the AHEAD website to get the bios that came in after the meeting, full presentations, as well as some photos up at www.fieldvet.org. Thanks for your patience- I'll let you know when we think we are "done." If you see any errors on your material at any stage, please just let Angela Yang and I know.

*At this stage, I believe all requests for reimbursements have been processed / submitted to our accounting office. If not, please let us know asap!

*Finally, thanks to Mike Kock's ongoing drive and energy (and to WDA/SAVA, with Banie Penzhoorn's gracious support), we are having an informal post-WPC AHEAD meeting at Onderstepoort during the WDA Africa and Middle East section / SAVA Wildlife Group meetings. The AHEAD discussion is scheduled for 1500 hours on the 7th of November at the Sir Arnold Theiler building. All are welcome. We will meet until 5 or 6 o'clock and then go and join a spit braai at the Pretoria zoo. The meeting will discuss the outcomes of the WPC AHEAD forum, look at progress and next steps for the ideas proposed for the Great Limpopo TFCA, and also allow for further discussion about developing a Vet Ecology/Ecosystem Health working group, something Markus Hofmeyr and others have proposed. Other AHEAD-related topics would be welcome, including of course any follow-up related to other landscapes or issues that arose in Durban.

That's all for now. Thanks very much,
Steve O.