Polar Marine Diatom Workshop


First Circular


Statement of Interest Form

2018 Iowa


6th Polar Marine Diatom Workshop
August 6-10, 2018
Iowa Lakeside Lab, Milford, Iowa, USA

*** Please complete Statement of Interest Form by April 15th 2018 to be considered for Priority Registration ***

Overview of the Polar Marine Diatom Workshop

The PMDW is a community-led, international workshop that combines longer, microscope-based taxonomy sessions, shorter research talks, and posters all focused on diatoms from the polar regions, past and present. The workshop aims to integrate highly experienced senior-level, mid-career and early career scientists with graduate and undergraduate students in order to pass on the finer aspects of taxonomy and ensure standard identification protocols in labs everywhere. We will do hands-on analysis of diatom assemblages from a wide range of environmental settings, including sea ice and marginal ice zones, open ocean waters, upwelling zones, benthic marine habitats and non-marine communities, all focused on Arctic and Antarctic settings.

A tradition of episodic Polar Marine Diatom Workshops was established decades ago, and has served to feed and maintain the community by meeting every other year in disparate locations. Over the past decade or so, we have met in Salamanca, Spain; Cardiff, Wales; Lincoln, Nebraska; Sydney, Australia; and Yamagata, Japan. This year we’re returning to the US and are planning the workshop at the Lakeside Lab August 6-10, 2018. We chose this location because of the historic association of the Macbride lab with freshwater diatoms and the desire to hold the meeting in a rural setting for a change.


Themes will be proposed by attending participants and as such, all participants are expected to present either a microscope session or a research presentation.

Registration Fees

To be confirmed when we hear the outcome of funding applications.

Registration fees cover lodging at Iowa Lakeside Lab, most workshop meals, the workshop program and microscope slides.

Optional Events

Biological Illustration Evening Workshop, free
Half Day Excursion (details to follow), estimated cost: $90

MacBride Diatom Lab
MacBride Diatom Lab

Workshop Site

The workshop will be held at the Iowa Lakeside Lab Regents Resource Center in Milford, Iowa, USA. The Iowa Lakeside Lab is situated on a stunning 147-acre campus on the shores of West Okoboji Lake in rural, northern Iowa. It is the home of the Macbride Lab, which has hosted the well-known Ecology and Systematics of Diatoms course for many years. The lab was renovated in 2003 to include Leica microscopes with 1000x magnification for diatom identification.

Food and Lodging

Workshop participants will be staying on the campus of the Iowa Lakeside Lab and will have a choice of lodging options ranging from hotel style accommodations to rustic, lakeside, open-air cabins. There are options for both shared and private rooms as well as shared and private baths. Most meals will be provided as part of the workshop as the site is in a rural area with few options for dining nearby.


The lab is located three hours from the Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport. Shuttles will be arranged to and from the Minneapolis Airport as part of the workshop, and ride-share agreements will be arranged by and for other participants. Accommodations will be provided on site in a variety of cabins or motel-style rooms.

Evening Activities

Time Table


We have been lucky to receive support for a limited number of travel grants. If you are interested in applying for one, please note this on the Statement of Interest form. Priority will be given to students, early career, and members of underrepresented groups. Those who receive support are expected to present a microscope session or research presentation.

Organizing Committee

Workshop Support

We are thrilled to acknowledge the support of our sponsors and friends: the US Science Support Program, the Iowa Lakeside Lab Regents Resource Center, the Friends of Lakeside Lab, the International Arctic Steering Committee, and The Micropalaeontological Society. Without their help, this workshop would not be happening.

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