PERC co-director Sy Taffel spoke to Radio New Zealand Nights about the virtuality of “The Lives and Afterlives of Plastic” conference. Likely the first of its type in New Zealand, the online conference is quite a new format, and as with all digital technologies the potential for future experimentation is great, and this conference is just a first attempt. The online conference format has benefit in the form of allowing greater access for people facing economic barriers to attending conferences that are international in scope, and a lessened environmental impact. However, whilst the fact the conference has no ‘live’ aspect means that it is convenient for everyone, there is also a lack in terms of immediacy of response, and reduced social networking capacity. That said, for people in geographically isolated countries, such as New Zealand, where most conferences require a great deal of travel, online conferences provide a valuable supplement. To facilitate discussion on the online format, a plenary forum has been set up on the conference webpage that conference attendees can take part in.
To listen to the full interview, visit the RNZ website.