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WDC Award for Innovative and Non-Invasive Research

WDC is delighted to announce the 2018 WDC Bharathi Viswanathan Award for Innovative and Non-Invasive Research. WDC strives to ensure that benign research methods are promoted as a guiding principle, both for the organisation and the researchers that we fund.

Through this Award, WDC aims to showcase non-invasive research methodologies, highlighting the fact that many of these methods provide scientific data of excellent quality, whilst also promoting the development of innovative and non-invasive approaches towards studying cetaceans. 

Up to £5,000 is available for the recipient of the WDC Bharathi Viswanathan Award

The objective of this Award is to inspire and encourage researchers (both young and old) to use non-invasive methods, which enable researchers to collect data within the context of the environment of their study subjects. These methods, which do not interfere invasively with the study subjects, often enable a more complete picture of their life cycles, interactions and habitat use. Such techniques can still be significantly geeky and technology based that they can produce sound, reliable science that can be used to make a real difference for species and population conservation and for individual protection.

The WDC Bharathi Viswanathan Award is about more than just promoting non-invasive research. WDC believes that one of the most important elements of sound conservation management is in understanding how scientific evidence relates to real-world, practical management advice. Therefore, the recipient of this award will, in addition to the main focus of their research, be required to undertake a relevant desk-based project that will examine the nexus between their research and real-world conservation efforts.

The objective of this award is to inspire and encourage researchers to use non-invasive methods

This project should aim to outline the relevant national legislation and permitting processes pertinent to the use of invasive research techniques within their country; detail the management objectives for their research and the likelihood of practical conservation or welfare benefits resulting from their research; and ultimately, promote non-invasive research amongst their peers and the wider research community. 

Up to £5,000 is available for the recipient of this annual award. The only restrictions that apply are that the project must utilize only non-invasive techniques and ultimately aim to benefit the conservation management or welfare of whales and/or dolphins.

The WDC Bharathi Viswanathan Award for Innovative and Non-Invasive Research will be awarded to the applicant who presents the most innovative project for consideration.

Applications will be accepted at any time until the closing date, midnight (GMT) March 6th 2018 and the Award recipient will be chosen by April 10th 2018 – all applicants will be notified whether successful or not.

Applications must be on a WDC Research Award Form (see below) and returned, preferably by e-mail, to 

Good Luck. We look forward to seeing your applications ...

Supporting Documents that you may find useful

  1. WDC Policy on invasive research
  2. WDC Research Project Award Application Guidelines
  3. WDC Research Award Application as a pdf
  4. WDC Research Award Application in word document form