Part 3: The Social Side of Seaweed

“Managing Seaweed through More than Maps” is a co-development project that fosters transferable skills for college students. This free workshop explores seaweed management as a climate change adaptation case study.

Across the three session, students are
1. Introduced to climate change research using interactive examples from remote
sensing, adaptation and governance research disciplines;
2. Guided through how to use Google Earth Engine to map the Sargassum seaweed
in the Caribbean, using remote sensing data and JavaScript coding; and
3. Provided with social science frameworks for analysing the human side to
environmental challenges, including case study method and key stakeholder

Who would this benefit: target audience
Students studying subjects that include a focus on climate change, hazard management, or remote sensing. The workshops will be of particular interest to A-level Geography students, as it covers contemporary methods of climate change research and a case study of an unusual environmental challenge (seaweed). Students with an interest in policy, remote sensing, and coding may also be interested in the workshop series.

Because of the advanced nature of the workshop content, it is recommended students are selected based on their interest in the content matter.

What is in it for the students and teachers: learning outcomes
The students gain skills and case study examples across multiple disciplines (coding, remote sensing, key stakeholder analysis) for use in the classroom, future studies and projects.

Learning outcomes include:
1. To have a basic understanding of seaweed algal blooms as a case study for
climate change adaptation and hazard mitigation.
2. To use JavaScript in a free open-access platform to identify seaweed blooms in
satellite imagery.
3. Describe why social science is important for climate change adaptation
4. Apply a commonly used social science research method to a climate change
adaptation case study

What is in it for us: the motivation behind the workshops
The SARTRAC (“Teleconnected SARgassum risks across the Atlantic: building capacity for TRansformational Adaptation in the Caribbean and West Africa”) project run by the University of Southampton and international partners is researching how vulnerable communities in the Caribbean and West Africa can effectively adapt to the massive influx of the seaweed Sargassum washing up on their beaches since 2011. Using seaweed as a unique example, the researchers aim to learn from the students what skills are useful in ground-level climate change adaptation and how skills are best transferred.

What will you need: resources
Please ensure your students have a computer for the virtual workshop
Please ensure your students have access to reliable internet
Please ensure a teacher is present during the workshops
We will provide workshop booklets, mailed out 1 week in advance of the workshop

Details: the workshop format and dates
Due to the continued COVID-19 circumstances, the workshops will be run virtually using Teams Live. The maximum number of participants in one session is 30 students. If you have 30 students interested in participating, please let us know as soon as possible.

The virtual workshop will run for three sessions of 1.5 hours, on the following days:
Tuesday 26 Jan 16.30-18.00 Part 1: Seaweed, Climate, and Society
Wednesday 27 Jan 16.30-18.00 Part 2: Coding and Mapping Across Space and Time
Thursday 28 Jan 16.30-18.00 Part 3: The Social Side of Seaweed

Please confirm your interest and attendance by Friday 15th January so that we can send out necessary booklets and information in advance.

Contact details
This workshop is being developed by a team based at the University of Southampton. To confirm attendance or for further information, please contact Ms Sien van der Plank at