St Helena Conference 2020 – From Discovery to Discovery

A celebration of the diversity of the Science, Research and Innovation taking place on St Helena

Over 120 people and students attended the one-day St Helena Conference 2020 ‘From Discovery to Discovery’ held at the Education Learning Centre on Thursday, 12 November 2020.

Organised by the St Helena Research Institute (SHRI) and St Helena Tourism and hosted by the St Helena Community College, the conference had a ‘jam-packed’ programme with 20 speakers. Many people stayed for the whole event and it was a delight to welcome students from both Prince Andrew School and Pilling Primary.

The variety and volume of research being undertaken took many by surprise. Highlighting the high quality of work being conducted on the Island by passionate and enthusiastic individuals and teams. It was particularly welcoming to hear about the work of returning graduates and to hear presentations from those who haven’t spoken in a forum like this before. A number of key themes were generated by the presentations around communication, behaviour and responsible action, participation, collaboration and data management. Quoting Martin George, through small responsible action… ‘We as a society can innovate and make a difference for St Helena’s future’.

All of the presentations and audio recordings will be made available on the St Helena Conference 2020 website shortly. Do check out the website to find out more about our speakers and for future downloads (

Assistant Director, Lifelong learning, Angie Benjamin, said:

The Conference was a great success. I was overwhelmed with the number of people in attendance who had conducted some form of research past and present. The presentations kept me engaged throughout the full programme. This celebration has brought out new beginnings for St Helena and its people and I hope that we can be celebrating more of these events with other research that has been conducted by our local people in the future. I would like to extend my thanks to all involved.”

Director of Education and Employment, Wendy Benjamin, added:

 “The Conference was definitely a celebration of research past, present and ongoing. I was engaged from start to finish. There is a wealth of research taking place here on St Helena that some of us are unaware of; the conference provided the opportunity to share this.  We also had the opportunity to commend our researchers for their hard work and dedication to their respective research projects that ultimately will benefit St Helena. 

“To all who participated or helped in any way, a huge thank you for your support.  A special vote of thanks has to go to Rebecca the driving force of the Research Institute. Her passion and commitment to the Research Institute ensured we had a successful Conference.”

SHRI Coordinator, Dr Rebecca Cairns-Wicks, concluded:

“I’d like to take this opportunity to thank our sponsors for their support in enabling us to host the Conference. Special thanks to Juliet Williams, Events Manager at St Helena Tourism for her help in co-organising the Conference and for the catering, Vanessa Thomas and EMD for their support, the Education & Lifelong Learning team for creating a beautifully decorated conference space and support in set up and managing the event, Research Institute Steering Group Members Gavin (Jack) Thomas and Martin George, Lloyd Weedon for website support and ESH & SAERI for allowing us to use the St Helena Conference logo and website respectively, the IT team for technical support and most importantly, our amazing speakers and panellists for supporting the Conference and delivering such stimulating and informative talks. Thanks to everyone who came along on the day. We hope you enjoyed the event and look forward to further engagement and keeping the conversation about research and innovation on St Helena going.”

#StHelena #SHRI #StHelenaConference2020 #FromDiscoverytoDiscovery


26 November 2020

St Helena Government Communications Hub

Telephone: 22470