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To apply for a placement opportunity, send us your cv and motivation letter at admissions@archipelago.gr.

Placements & Internships
Fields of placement
University Courses

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1. Marine Research & Conservation

The Aegean Sea supports an exceptional biodiversity, including rare and protected marine habitats and species. For over a decade, Archipelagos has collected data and monitored important ecosystems of the Aegean, assessing habitats and populations, as well as the factors impacting them. This knowledge enables the development of successful and targeted management and conservation plans. Current research and projects focus on several fields of activity:

  • Visual-census surveys on littoral zone ecosystems assessing fish, algae and invertebrate biodiversity, and the factors impacting them (e.g. tourism, pollution).
  • Mapping and ecological assessment of Posidonia oceanica meadows and coralligene reefs
  • Study of marine mammal populations (migration, ecology, threats) through visual-census and acoustic observation.
  • Risk assessment of maritime traffic in the Aegean, development of management proposals
  • Collection of information in related conservation activities for the development of environmental awareness campaigns within the local communities and the wider public.

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2. Fisheries Research & Management

With over 18,000 km of coastline and one of the largest fishing fleets in the world, monitoring of fishing activities in Greece is no simple task. As a result a great deal of the catch data goes unreported, giving very little insight into the health of the fisheries. Archipelagos are working with local fishermen in an attempt to accurately characterise the small-scale fisheries of the area. It is hoped that through continuous data collection, appropriate local management schemes can be implemented to mitigate the effects of overfishing and allow the recovery of dwindling fish stocks in the area. Some of the work involved in this project includes:

Work supporting the development of the first co-managed Fisheries Protected Area in Greece, in the island of Fourni. This involves the collection of catch data from small-scale boats (identifying species, recording the size of individuals, recording gear used, participatory GIS data etc).

  • Questionnaire based surveys to collect information about fisheries in the area like gear used, effort per catch and differences in catches over time.
  • Researching and recording Illegal, Unregulated and Unreported fishing activities being carried out in Greek waters.
  • Work related to the development and assessment of the success of fisheries management measures.
  • Collection of information in related conservation activities for the development of environmental awareness campaigns within the local communities and the wider public.

3. Forest & Freshwater Ecosystem Management

The larger islands of the eastern Aegean support a large variety of unique and important habitat types. Among those habitats present are thick pine forests, dense oak forests, and green riparian valleys linked to freshwater ecosystems. The numerous smaller islands and islets of the region have a lower species abundance, but support a high overall biodiversity due to their geographical isolation. These areas, in the past, have been seemingly disregarded by the wider scientific community and as such are largely understudied. The collection of scientific data contributes to the creation of effective management plans in order to protect these valuable habitats. Some of the work involved with such a placement could include:

  • Field surveys assessing the biodiversity of forest, freshwater and small islet ecosystems, as well as the factors impacting them.
  • Projects assessing the desertification and erosion of small islets, as well as experimental reforestation.
  • Design and experimentation of management measures and schemes,
  • Collection of information and participation in related conservation activities for the development of environmental awareness in the local communities and the wider public.

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4. Research & Conservation of Island Flora & Fauna

The islands of the Aegean are home to a rich biodiversity of flora and fauna, yet our knowledge of these is still limited. For example, it is estimated that Ikaria and Samos have over 1,500 flora species. Samos is the only island in the Mediterranean that the Golden Jackal can be found and the only place in Greece that the Mediterranean Chameleon still survives. Many protected species of reptiles, amphibians and mammals (such as otters and a large biodiversity of bats), can be found on the islands of the eastern Aegean. The islands and islets of the region are an important transit station, feeding and breeding ground for a large number of protected migratory and resident bird species (including flamingos, Eleonora falcons, Audouin’s gull). Archipelagos is working hard to document all the species on the islands and conduct research into their ecology and threats. Work involved in this placement may include:

  • Field surveys assessing island flora biodiversity and herbarium work.
  • Experimental replantation of islets degraded by erosion.
  • Field surveys assessing the biodiversity of bird, reptile and small mammal populations and the factors impacting them.
  • Surveys assessing the populations of chameleons on the island of Samos include night-time surveys conducted several times a week, capturing, measuring, recording and marking chameleons for future identification.
  • Surveys assessing the population of the Golden jackal include night-time surveys monitoring territorial groups using an acoustic vocalization technique to estimate number of groups on the Island.
  • Early morning and night time surveys assessing the populations of bats and species found on the islands.
  • Bird surveys including point surveys at known resting sites, transects through a variety of habitats and photographing birds at nesting sites, using time lapse cameras. Other surveys may include seabird surveys on board Archipelagos’ research vessel and recording bird calls of elusive species.
  • Observation of fauna using camera traps.
  • Questionnaire based surveys for the collection of information regarding location, conservation status and local superstition regarding ancient trees, local herbs and flowers as well as rare fauna species (chameleons, jackals).
  • Preparation of management reports for the conservation of island flora and fauna, as well as collection and analysis of information on species recorded.
  • Collection of information and participation in related conservation activities for the development of environmental awareness in the local communities and the wider public.

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5. Agronomic Research & Seed Bank Projects

During the past few decades the Greek agricultural varieties are becoming extinct at a worrying rate. For example it is estimated that there has already been a disappearance by 92% of the Greek varieties of wheat. These local varieties of agricultural plants have survived for thousands of years within the local agricultural communities and have become adapted to the specific environmental pressures such as having low water and nutrient levels.  These varieties also develop resistances to local, natural plant pathogens, and can therefore be cultivated without the need for chemical fertilizers or pesticides. In the spring of 2005, Archipelagos created the Aegean Seed Bank with the aim of collecting and preserving local seed varieties from around the Aegean, as well as promoting their use among local farmers. These seeds are also propagated under suitable conditions, whilst the benefits of traditional and organic agricultural practices are promoted. Placements relating to the seed bank may include:

  • Research into traditional agricultural farming techniques practiced by the local communities within the Aegean islands.
  • Experimental application of these practices as well as organic farming practices.
  • Collection, classification and analysis of local varieties of seeds preserved within the Aegean Seed Bank.
  • Experimental cultivation of seeds in order to study their morphological and productivity characteristics.
  • Collection of information and participation in activities in relation to the development of environmental awareness within local communities and the wider public.

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6. Laboratory Assessment of Environmental Impacts

Archipelagos has established the first non-governmental, non-profit, laboratory in Greece.

Through this laboratory, water and soil are analysed in order to locate potential sources of pollution that are harming marine and terrestrial ecosystems and the health of the local communities. Participants on a laboratory assessment placement can expect to be involved in the following:

  • Chemical and microbiological analysis of potable and marine water samples.
  • Analysis of soil samples for nutrient content.
  • Analysis of seawater for nutrient content.
  • Analysis of sand sediment samples from around Greece to determine the content of microplastic fibres.
  • Collection of information and participation in related conservational activities for the development of environmental awareness in local communities and the wider public.

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7. GIS Mapping of Marine & Terrestrial Habitats & Biodiversity

In order to effectively preserve and manage areas of the eastern Aegean, the areas of study need to be accurately identified. Unfortunately much of this region has not previously been mapped in enough detail to allow for this. During all field surveys, both marine and terrestrial, the paths, locations and relevant points of interest are all marked and recorded so that a database of GIS material can be build up. Participants in a GIS placement can be expected to work on some of the following things:

  • Participating in fieldwork in order to log tracks, locations and points of interest on a GPS Device.
  • Creating maps for various in-house and external projects using both raw and secondary GIS data.
  • GIS analysis of both marine and terrestrial habitats and ecosystems.
  • Collection of additional GIS information from external sources.
  • Creation of “participatory GIS maps” based on data collected from local communities.
  • Collection of information and participation in conservation activities in relation to the development of environmental awareness within local communities and the wider public.

8. Applications of Renewable Energy Sources

Energy demand is constantly increasing in Greece as well as in the rest of the world. Archipelagos is working towards developing projects involving the experimentation and use of small scale renewable energy applications that are of low cost, sustainable and beneficial for the island communities and environment. The aim is to examine the efficient and inefficient examples of renewable energy resources and to develop an optimum proposal that could have successful small-scale applications across the Greek islands. Some of the work involved in this area includes:

  • Carrying out general research on applications of renewable energy sources for the island communities, using solar, wind, river water and biomass energy.
  • Launching a campaign promoting the re-use of waste cooking oil for producing biodiesel.
  • Establishing contacts and partnerships with researchers in Greece and the rest of Europe, in order to identify coastal environmental impacts of large-scale renewable energy developments.
  • Research into energy self-sufficiency using the islands of the eastern Aegean as an example, with the aim to promote sustainable and efficient use of renewable energy technologies.
  • Creating informational material and participation in related conservation activities with the aim of raising public awareness in the island communities and the wider public for the use of small scale renewable energy sources.

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9. Illustration of Flora & Fauna of the Aegean Sea

Focusing on the illustration of a range of marine and terrestrial biodiversity, from mammals to flora, this placement provides an opportunity to work on a large range of projects. The participant will contribute to environmental conservation efforts whilst developing a dynamic personal portfolio. Activities include:

  • Creation of scientific illustrations of the species of the Greek seas and islands, both marine and terrestrial.
  • Participation in field surveys observing species to be illustrated.Writing and illustration of children’s books and videos on wildlife and environmental issues, in collaboration with environmental scientists and students.
  • Creating illustrations to be used for informational material in related conservation activities with the aim of raising public awareness.

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10. Graphic Design for Environmental Awareness Material

In order to promote Archipelagos’ research and conservation work and launch awareness campaigns, Archipelagos requires creative individuals to produce innovative environmental awareness material. Participants taking part in such a placement will be expected to use their graphic design skills in environmental awareness campaigns, educational material and promotion of environmental conservation through a variety of media. Main fields of activity include:

  • Designing posters presenting the natural environments of the Aegean to build awareness of local biodiversity and threats.
  • Designing leaflets and booklets with Mediterranean species information and environmental threats.
  • Designing materials for lectures and presentations on marine and terrestrial biodiversity of the Aegean.
  • Working closely with other members of the media team to integrate illustrations into posters, using technical skills to design templates or images for use within video production etc.
  • Designing printed material on environmental issues for use in local schools & communities.

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11. Animation

This placement focuses on the development of animation to help build awareness of environmental issues. Activities include:

  • Animating marine biodiversity (mammals, fish, algae and invertebrates) of the Greek seas and issues related to their ecology, behaviour and conservation.
  • Animating terrestrial biodiversity (plants, insects, birds, reptiles and mammals) of Aegean island ecosystems and issues related to their ecology, behaviour and conservation.
  • Creating animations on various environmental issues, showing biodiversity and factors threatening the natural environment, and ways in which environment can be protected to be used in awareness raising campaigns for local, national and EU populations.

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12. Environmental Photography in the region of the Aegean Sea

Focusing on the photography of a range of marine and terrestrial biodiversity and landscapes, this placement provides an opportunity to work on a range of projects. The participant will contribute to environmental conservation efforts whilst developing a dynamic personal portfolio. A working knowledge of photographic programs is desirable to produce professional quality images. Activities include:

  • Wildlife and nature photography of species found in the eastern Aegean.
  • Landscape photography on the islands of eastern Aegean.
  • Portrait photography.
  • Photography of research activities carried out by Archipelagos’ teams.
  • Working with members of the research team and helping them with basic photography and editing techniques.

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13. Documentary Film Production

This placement focuses on environmental filming to be used in various genres, from children’s awareness DVDs to documentaries, giving the participants the opportunity to contribute to environmental conservation efforts whilst developing a varied show-reel and portfolio. Main fields of activity are:

  • Filming of research activities carried out by Archipelagos’ teams.
  • Wildlife, nature and landscape filming on the islands of eastern Aegean.
  • Video journalism on issues related to biodiversity and factors impacting the natural environment.
  • Editing underwater videos using archive material.
  • Filming and editing material for different media (TV, internet).
  • Producing promotional, awareness and educational material on local biodiversity and threats to it.
  • Working with members from other disciplines to incorporate various forms of media into the production process where appropriate e.g. illustrations or graphic design.
  • Maintaining and organizing the media library and keeping an archive of interviews from volunteers.

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14. Environmental Education

Archipelagos plays an active role in raising environmental awareness of children within the local communities and Greece overall, by creating educational material and presentations. For this purpose, qualified educators, are needed who are passionate about the environment and seek to expand their knowledge and experience. Work may include:

  • Collaborating with other Archipelagos teams, including research teams and the media team, in the creation and development of teaching packs.
  • Creating lesson plans, presentations, educational games and other teaching aids for a variety of school ages.
  • Participating in local school visits to present the teaching material and help implement lesson plans.

15. Information Technology

The work of Archipelagos teams produces large datasets and media archives which need to be organised in easily searchable databases. Also Archipelagos has a number of websites including a wildlife library and various social networking profiles. These sites need to be continually maintained and updated. This placement focuses on database design and data mining, general system administration as well as the programming of such websites. Current projects are focused around the following:

  • Content management system administration, in particular dotNetNuke.
  • Database design and implementation.
  • Data mining and modelling.
  • Web site design and implementation.
  • Network administration – design and implementation of an intranet website for ease of information and file sharing.

16. Legal Work

Due to the dynamic nature of Archipelagos’ work we need to have an understanding of both national and international laws and policies. This knowledge is required so that we can combat environmental crimes, as well as better implement our proposals and management and conservation strategies for both terrestrial and marine environments. Archipelagos also collaborate with a variety of external organisations and occasionally need to draw up agreements between parties regarding the use of research, documents and photographs. Some of the work involved may include research into:

  • Legislation regarding shipping, ship traffic and maritime accidents.
  • The creation, implementation and management of protected areas.
  • EU fisheries legislation and Illegal, Unregulated and Unreported fishing legislation.
  • Combating the trade in endangered plants and animals, through CITES.
  • Combating environmental crimes, pollution incidents and destruction of natural habitats and wildlife.
  • Work may also involve preparing agreements for collaboration between Archipelagos and external organisations, universities and institutes.

17. Public Relations

The work of Archipelagos is well within the public eye and help is required in broadcasting our work and conservation efforts to the general public. This is achieved through establishing contacts with agencies and creating press releases, newspaper and web articles. The use of social media networks is also becoming crucial in promoting and communicating Archipelagos’ efforts in real time. As a non-profit organisation, fundraising activities are also essential for the continuation of Archipelagos’ work. Activities may include:

  • Creating press releases for newspapers, internet, television and radio.
  • Establishing new social network profiles and using them to promote Archipelagos’ work and launch awareness campaigns.
  • Extending Archipelagos’ collaborations by contacting international universities, institutions and embassies.
  • Designing and preparing fundraising activities and events.

18. Administrative Work

As an expanding organisation, Archipelagos is looking for an administrator to assist in office organisation and other relevant tasks. Work will involve:

  • Organisation of participant’s files and documents, both historical files and new applications.
  • Creation of standardised protocols for the storing and organisation of all paperwork and files.
  • Organisation of various material generated through Archipelagos research and conservation projects
  • Aiding in the organisation of the general upkeep of the bases and research stations, and research work as required.
  • Correspondence and general administrative tasks.
 
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