Chris and I recently returned from Sydney where we participated in an Early Career Researcher conference for individuals working in conservation biology. The conference was hosted by Susan Cameron and Rob Wentworth. Roughly a dozen people were in attendance, including Dan Faith and Simon Ferrier. The conference lasted for two days, with most of the time devoted to presentations by conference participants. In addition, some time was set aside for general discussion of those issues thought to be most important by those in attendance. These included the roles of both phylogenetics and climate change in conservation planning. Indeed, thanks perhaps to the attendance of a couple of botanists, phylogenetics played a much larger role in the conference than I had expected. Many thanks are owed to both Rob and Susan for organizing the conference and providing a nice opportunity to see the different areas of research on which the next generation of conservation biologists is currently focused.