If you are lucky and do not mind a bit of frustration and stress, you may one day experience the joys of science across borders. If you do get the chance, here are my tips.
1: follow the doers code and be ethical in everything you do. (E.g. Do not come into someone else’s country on a tourist visa expecting to do work, research, collect samples etc.)
2: share your work with the people who need it, who will use it, who want it, who will judge you for quality and contribution. (This means publishing in a journal the people you studied can actually read for free, without enrolling in the university you go to or moving to your country.)
3: logistics are hell. Add three months to everything. Especially if you have to use UPS/FEDEx to get something into a country with some bogus VAT tax customs duty etc.
4: be polite, friendly and respectful of your colleagues in the other location. They are just as frustrated, probably not getting paid as much (considering you have time to read my blog), and human as well.
5: be thankful when something works out because it doesn’t always work out.
I just received my hard drives with the geo data from the Bahamas, shipped out on December 20th 2016. Yes, I have gone through all stages of academic grief, but I am thankful that after they languished in customs broker hell for 2 months, my colleagues, Dani Hanek and Christopher Russell were able to turn them around so quickly.
Ancilleno Davis, PhD. Candidate
Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Biology- Miami University, Oxford Ohio