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Presenting of the Мanual – How to Become (Better) Field Researcher, Written by Stanimira Deleva.

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12.01.2022
Dear friends, 
We are delighted to present you our new manual – “How to Become (Better) Field Researcher”, written by Stanimira Deleva.

She is one of the “Green Balkans’ kids”. Stanimira came to the organization full of enthusiasm and curiosity about the world. Over the years, she has built professional skills and developed activities in number of countries by leading or participating in exciting scientific researches. 

In her manual Stanimira makes wonderful summary of all major difficulties and challenges that a young person faces in their first steps in nature researches. Moreover, this manual could be useful even for experienced field explorers and researchers, who are stuck within their wrong practices. This manual could help them to stop to spread those practices among new people in the field of research.

The manual analyses in details all mistakes that have been avoided. It improves the efficiency of fieldwork and preserves the work and conserves the psyche, good self-esteem, motivation, and sometimes even the lives of researchers. 

The book is written with a tiny sense of humor and contains valuable quotes from famous scientists, writers and other influential people. 

It is wonderful theoretically systematized edition, based on a huge experience. In the manual you can find useful advices derived from different situations and lessons learned. 

But field research, however, does not require suffering, it requires efficiency! This manual is real, useful and practical tool that would guide any future explorer on how to be a good professional and colleague, and better person.

There is a link in the end of the article, where you can download the manual. You can share your impressions with us on the following email: etilova@greenbalkans.org 

 We are happy and proud that this useful and educational publication is already here, and here are some of our favourite quotes:
 “…You could be a genius scientist, you could have amazing ideas and projects which are worthy and deserve a Nobel Prize. However, if you are careless and you do not take care for your equipment, if you are messy, disorganized and do not have good skills how to organize your stuff, your researches’ level would be severely affected… ”
 “…you could be one of the greatest minds of your age, but would you afford to ruin your research by forgetting your camera memory card… ”
"... the time when the field research was carried out by someone armed only with a notebook and a pencil, patiently spending months in observation, is almost over ...."
 “…try not to aggravate the situation with argues. It is good to defend your position when you are right. But there are situations when you are correct, and at the same time none of us can stand you because of your behavior…
 “…if you are able to find people’s strengths and give them chance to show their capabilities and in what they are really good at, you would have skilled team…”
 “…If you send on a long trek a competitive impatient person with someone who is calm and not quite fast, it is huge risk because this is not good combination. There is possibility while one is still preparing his backpack, the other one is getting nervous. In such cases the impatient one would start the trek alone, he would already walk several kilometers in an unknown direction, and he would fell into a hole and suffer alone there…”
“…when you work in the field you will have a lot of unforeseen situations and factors won’t be perfect. That’s why you need to try to minimize those changes which depend on you…”
“…If your dream is to be a field explorer, most probably you have been influenced by the romantic notion of a Victorian explorer, such as Henry Walter Bates. You imagine you are an explorer who observes the nature with a magnifying glass in your hand and from time to time jot down in your leather-bound notebook…”
 “The mobile phone is an extremely convenient and useful tool for communication and data collection. Unfortunately, a large number of owners of smart devices do not use all devices’ capabilities and the most common feature of the average smartphone is watching videos with cats, exchanging memes and communicating via emoticons.”
 “During your career as a field researcher you will cook your food. You will cook on a gas ring high in the mountains, on a small hot plate hidden behind a rock, you will cook on an open fire, you will cook in an unfamiliar kitchen with inscriptions in a foreign language, and you will melt snow for soup and improvise endlessly with exotic spices. There is still no consensus in the scientific community on how many different recipes can be made with instant mashed potatoes and canned tuna.” 
 “…The researcher thinks and works best when their stomach is full, their underwear is clean and their feet are warm…”
“…When we hear the word “survival” the first image that comes to our mind is Bear Grylls. His advices are funny, and we should not forget that this is just a TV-show, and this is not same as in a real emergency situation. The chance you have to drink your own urine while descending a liana over an active volcano is minimal. On the other hand, the chance of tearing the strap of your backpack while working in the field, losing your pencil or running out of toilet paper is quite high. A good emergency kit in a waterproof and sturdy box…”
“…Most of us, who are already grown up people, remember Crocodile Dundee, and his menacing knife. The scene in which Dundee says "this is not a knife, this is a knife" and carelessly waving a 30 cm blade in front of the terrified eyes of the most unfortunate thief in city had become a cult among hunters and bush craft enthusiasts. However, what fans of large knives would not admit that in addition to weighing, spreading slices of bread with lyutenitsa, and making people doubt the sanity of their owners, such knives have very little application in real life.”
 “Forget about Lara Croft’s shorts and Rambo’s white top tank. When working in the field, you should always strive to protect yourself.”