Biology of Fish 2014

A scientific case study on fish physiology held in August 2014 at Heriot Watt University


Delegates: 468 
Type: society section meeting
Sector: scientific (fish physiology)
Duration: 3-7th August, 2014
Main Venues: Edinburgh Conference Centre, Heriot-Watt University


Heriot-Watt on campus accommodation
Premier Inn Edinburgh Park
Motel One
Edinburgh Hilton Grosvenor
Novotel Edinburgh Park

What was the purpose of the conference?

Provide a platform for the dissemination of the latest scientific knowledge in the area of fish physiology and to foster international collaboration.

How was Edinburgh selected as the conference destination?

A bid was presented to the Executive Committee of the Physiology Section of the American Fisheries Society.

What was your set up and support during the organisation of the conference?

I was the main organizer with support from the Edinburgh Conference Centre, Heriot-Watt University (ECC) and Convention Edinburgh

What were the key highlights of the conference?

Plenary session; conference dinner; closing session and prize presentation

How did you select your venues?

ECC was chosen as the logical main venue because of my association with HWU and the expected number of delegates.

Gosford House as the venue for the Dinner was selected following a meeting at an Ambassador Event and subsequent experience with a previous conference.

What were your biggest challenges?

Keeping the costs down. Although a society was involved, the conference had to be self-funding, but had no major pressure to make a surplus. This was done by insisting, where appropriate on per delegate daily rates and negotiating away any major setup or facility fees.

Understanding VAT implications.

In hindsight, would you have done anything differently?

I might have employed an accountant.

Any lasting legacy/research collaboration from the conference?

Potential collaboration between myself and Helmut Segner in Bern, Switzerland. We are currently planning a joint MSc project to get things started.

The support of Convention Edinburgh played a major part in giving me the confidence to organize the meeting myself in Edinburgh. From the bid process right through to arranging off campus accommodation and entertainment, the staff at CE provided a one stop shop for valuable advice and networking with approved suppliers.


Feedback from delegates


Back in Canada after an excellent conference in a wonderful city. Thanks @ICBF2014 #ICBF2014.

Bill Dew @eogguy

@ICBF2014 @hagfishbio another awesome ICBF thanks Mark Hartl and the gang at Heriott Watt and of course thanks to all the hagfishologists!


Dinner at the beautiful Gosford House and highland fling dancing afterwards; a fantastic end to a great conference! #ICBF2014



I would like to say a big "thank you" to you for organizing so well this excellent meeting: I really enjoyed, lots of good stuff and talks. I take many stimulating ideas with me. It is this type of meetings which are the motivating highlights in our job.

Helmut Segner, Switzerland

Everyone had a great time, and the scientific sessions and talks were great….and hey.....what about that banquet!!! Everyone was talking about what a stunning venue it was and how much fun they had!!

Kurt Gamperl, Newfoundland

…congratulations on pulling off such a great meeting!

Steve McCormick, USA 

Many thanks for a wonderful week last week at Heriot Watt. The conference was excellent. I hope you have recovered well from it.

Gary Anderson, Canada 

I just want to congratulate you on your fantastic organization of the ICBF meeting. This was a world class meeting!

Sebastian Plante, Canada

Thank you and your committee and all of your students/staff for a wonderful, informative ICBF meeting. It was a scientifically excellent meeting at Heriott Watt Univ. Edinburgh is an absolutely stunning city. It is extremely encouraging that you have so many "young" scientists attend the country, this bodes well for future meetings....... 

Stacia Sower, USA 


Find out more about ICBF 2014.

View the event image gallery on Facebook.

Case study supplied by Edinburgh Ambassador, Dr Mark Hartl, Heriot -Watt University 
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