A quick search on the internet reveals that no one seems to know how many scientific conferences take place in a year. The best I could find was “it’s got to be huge”, and when it comes to it, that is as a good a quantification as you need. With so many meetings, in so many fields of behavioural research, what makes Measuring Behavior stand out? Two very important things.
New methods and techniques are vital for the advancement of science
First it is not about results, which is very unusual. Virtually every conference focuses on scientific results. However, in practice, it is often the developments in methodology that have lead to the real advances in science. Without the microscope there would have been no microbiology. Without the telescope, there would be no astronomy. And without x-ray crystallography, Watson and Crick would never have discovered the structure of DNA. New methods and techniques are vital for the advancement of science.
Second, Measuring Behavior is an astonishingly multi-disciplinary conference. ‘Behavior’ is something you can study in drivers of vehicles, rats in cages, eagles in the air, fish in the sea and players in games. In the 2012 edition of the conference, all these topics have special sessions devoted to them. Likewise, participants will include ethologists, behavioral ecologists, neuroscientists, experimental psychologists, human factors researchers, movement scientists, robotics engineers, software designers, electronic engineers, human-computer interaction specialists, physiologists, architects, and countless more.
The 8th edition of Measuring Behavior
This year, Measuring Behavior returns to its roots. It started in 1996 as a workshop organised by Dr. Berry Spruijt and Dr. Lucas Noldus in Utrecht, The Netherlands. Professor Spruijt, now Chair of Ethology and Welfare at Utrecht University is the Honorary Chair and one of the distinguished keynote speakers this year. Lucas Noldus’s company, Noldus Information Technology has had a long-term commitment to the conference over the years, and is the chief sponsor, (care is taken that the conference program is scientifically independent of the sponsor by means of an anonymous peer review supervised by a Scientific Program Committee.)
The 8th edition of the conference takes place in Utrecht, 28th – 31st August 2012 and you can learn more about it at www.measuringbehavior.org.