The IUGG Electronic Journal

Volume 4 No. 12 (December 1, 2004)

This short, informal newsletter is intended to keep IUGG Member National Committees informed about the activities of the IUGG Associations, and actions of the IUGG Secretariat. Past issues are posted on the IUGG Web site. Please forward this message to those who will benefit from the information. Your comments are welcome.


  1. Meetings selected for IUGG support in 2005
  2. Honors and Awards
  3. IGY+50 Developments
  4. Report of the ICSU First Regional Meeting for Africa
  5. Report on the 5th Asian Seismological Commission (ASC) meeting and symposium on Seismic Hazard Evaluation and Risk Reduction
  6. Report on Workshop on Risk Science and Sustainability
  7. IUGG-related meetings occurring during December 2004 - February 2005

1. Meetings selected for IUGG support in 2005

IUGG co-sponsors symposia and meetings appropriate to our disciplines of study. $20,000 (USD) is allocated annually to assist meetings, and especially to support the participation of young scientists and scientists from developing countries. Officers of the Union, Associations and Inter-Association Commissions and Committees propose meetings to receive these awards. For 2005, IUGG will support the following meetings, including one to be held in 2006. Funds are available to support additional meetings.

Recent Geodynamics, Geophysical Risk and Sustainability in the Black Sea to Caspian Region, July 3-6, 2005, Baku, Azerbaijan

4th Balkan Geophysical Society Conference and Technical Exposition, October 9-12, 2005, Bucharest, Romania

4th International Symposium on Geophysics, November 22-24, 2005, Tanta, Egypt

XII IAGA Workshop on Geomagnetic Instruments, Data Acquisition and Processing, 19 June - 24 June 2006, Belsk, Poland

2. Honors and Awards

Prof. John Rodda received the International Hydrology Prize at the WMO Commission for Hydrology meeting held in October in Geneva. The International Hydrology Prize is awarded annually to a scientist who has made an outstanding contribution to Hydrology. It is given by the International Association of Hydrological Sciences (IAHS) with the support of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Dr Arthur J. Askew, President-elect of IAHS, presented the award. The full citation including details of Prof. Rodda's illustrious career and his service to hydrology, can be found on the IAHS web site.

The International Association of Geodesy (IAG) presented their 2003 Young Author Award to Michael Kern for his paper published in the Journal of Geodesy, A Study on the Combination of Satellite, Airborne and Terrestrial Gravity Data. Currently, Dr. Kern is an external European Space Agency fellow and is actively involved in research related to the calibration and validation of the GOCE satellite mission.

3. IGY+50 Developments

The Electronic Geophysical Year (eGY) initiative has begun an electronic newsletter. To access the newsletter or to subscribe to receive a copy automatically, please visit the EGY website.

During the ICSU Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA) 19th International Conference held in Berlin, Germany, 7-10 November, Charles Barton presented a talk "Preparing for eGY" and discussed further avenues of collaboration with CODATA activities.

Regarding the International Polar Year 2007-2008, the ICSU/WMO Joint Committee for IPY is inviting Preliminary Expressions of Intent. The purpose of this call is to collect information needed to facilitate projects and activities within IPY that are consistent with the themes and observational goals outlined in IPY planning documents (see ). This is not a process by which proposals will be funded. To receive a copy of the invitation, please contact the IUGG Secretariat ( Expressions of intent are due by 14 January 2005.

The October 12, 2004 issue of the newsletter for the International Heliophysical Year (IHY) is available at Articles include a Science Highlight (consensus on the flow parameters of interstellar helium through the Solar System), International efforts, the UN BSS program, and the IHY Science Coordination Database.

4. Report of the ICSU First Regional Meeting for Africa

A meeting was held in Harare, Zimbabwe, 9-11 October 2004, to decide upon the objectives, priorities and working plan for the newly established ICSU Regional Office for Africa, which will be hosted by the South African National Research Foundation (NRF) in Pretoria, South Africa. Representatives from ICSU, the NRF, African academies of science/research organisations and from unions affiliated to ICSU attended the meeting. In total there were 50 participants including 16 African countries and 14 scientific unions. Charles Merry, University of Cape Town, attended on behalf of IUGG and gave a brief presentation on the role that IUGG could play in strengthening African science. This focussed on the IUGG-led proposal "Geosciences in Africa", which has the support of other geo-unions within the ICSU fold. As a concrete example of IUGG involvement in Africa, he also described the AFREF (African reference frame) project of the International Association of Geodesy (IAG). The next steps to be taken are:

  • appointment of a regional committee from nominations submitted by ICSU African member countries
  • advertisement and filling of the post of director of the regional office
  • holding the first meeting of the regional committee and opening of the office by March 2005.

A business plan, work plan and web page are to be created within six months of the opening of the office.
[This article was extracted from the report by Charles Merry]

5. Report on the 5th Asian Seismological Commission (ASC) meeting and symposium on Seismic Hazard Evaluation and Risk Reduction

The symposium and the Commission meetings, hosted by the Armenian Association of Seismology and Physics of the Earth (AASPE), were held during 18 - 20 October 2004 at Yerevan, Armenia under the overall guidance of Prof. Serguei Balassanian. There were about 200 participants from outside Armenia and about 60 from Armenia - the largest meeting ever held by the ASC. About 140 oral presentations and 50 posters were presented. The 3-day symposium was preceded by a 15-day course on "Recent Trends in Seismic Networks, Data Processing and Exchange, Hazard and Risk Assessment, and Disaster Mitigation" which was attended by about 30 participants. The symposium was followed by a 1-day visit to the Spitak area where a devastating earthquake in 1998 had claimed about 25,000 human lives.

On a suggestion from the ASC Bureau, Founder President Awards for good organizational efforts were instituted during ASC meeting at Tehran in 2000. For III ASC, Tehran, Iran 2000, awards were presented to A. Javaherian and Mohammad Reza Gheitanchi. For IV ASC, Nepal 2002, awards were presented to Amol Dixit and Shiva Pradhanang. For V ASC, Yerevan, Armenia 2005, awards were presented to Hripsime Vardanyan and Ashot Meliksetyan.

A new Bureau was elected for the period 2004-2008 with the following Members:

Prof. Zhu Chuanzen, President
Prof. Academician Sergei Goldin, First Vice President
Dr. Cao Dinh Trieu, Second Vice President
Dr. R.K. Chadha, Secretary General

The 2006 ASC meeting will be held in Bangkok, Thailand.

[ This article was extracted from a report by Harsh Gupta ]

6. Report on Workshop on Risk Science and Sustainability

On August 26-27, the IUGG Union Commission on Geophysical Risk and Sustainability (GeoRisk) and the EuroScience Working Group "Science and Urgent Problems of Society" convened a NATO Advanced Workshop in Stockholm Sweden on Risk Science, Society and Sustainable Development. The Workshop was held in the framework of the EuroScience Open Forum. A short report on the Workshop by Alik Ismail-Zadeh and Tom Beer, was recently published in the 2 November 2004 issue of EOS (Vol. 85, No. 44, page 453). The workshop focused on the question, "Can sustainable development be successful without taking into account the risks of hazards and their impacts?" To this end, the workshop brought together experts from the field of geophysics and mathematics with experts in social science and law specifically to deal with problems of risk and sustainability. A copy of the report can be obtained from the authors or by request from the office of the IUGG Secretariat.

7. IUGG-Related Meetings Occurring during December 2004 - February 2005

A calendar of meetings of interest to IUGG disciplines (especially those organized or sponsored by IUGG Associations) is posted on the IUGG Web Site [ ]. Specific information about these meetings, including web links, can be found there. Individual Associations also list more meetings on their web sites appropriate to their disciplines.

November 27 - December 2, 2004
ICSU; Santa Cruz de Tenerife; Workshop on Comet/Asteroid Impacts And Human Society

December 2 - December 4, 2004
IUGG GeoRisk Commission; Hyderabad, India; Conference on Geophysical Risk and Sustainability

December 6 - December 8, 2004
IAG; University of New South Wales; Sydney, Australia; The 2004 International Symposium on GPS/GNSS (GNSS 2004)

December 6 - December 9, 2004
Japan Water Forum; Tokyo, Japan; International Conference on Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM)

December 6 - December 10, 2004
WMO/IAMAS; Montreal, Canada; The 1st International Science Symposium for THORPEX: A Global Atmospheric Research Programme

December 13 - December 17, 2004
AGU; San Francisco, California - USA; Fall Meeting of the American Geophysical Union

December 15 - December 18, 2004
IAHS; Hong Kong, China; 4th International Symposium on Environmental Hydraulics -and- 14th Congress of Asia and Pacific Division International Association of Hydraulic Engineering Research

January 13 - January 15, 2005
UNESCO; Paris, France; Physics for Tomorrow, the Launch Conference of the UN International Year of Physics 2005

January 17 - January 23, 2005
IAG/IASPEI; Trieste, Italy; Joint Capacity Building Workshop on Deformation Measurements and Understanding Natural Hazards in Developing Countries

January 18 - January 22, 2005
UN-ISDR; Kobe, Japan; World Conference on Disaster Reduction

January 31 - February 5, 2005
IAG; Budapest, Hungary; International IGeS Geoid School

February 7 - February 11, 2005
SCOPE; New Delhi, India; SCOPE XIIth General Assembly

February 23 - February 25, 2005
IAHS; Bonn, Germany; International Conference on Integrated Assessment of Water Resources and Global Change: A North-South Analysis

This short, informal newsletter is intended to keep IUGG Member National Committees informed about the activities of the IUGG Associations, and actions of the IUGG Secretariat. Past issues are posted on the IUGG Web site. Your comments are welcome.

End of IUGG Electronic Journal Volume 4 Number 12 (December 1, 2004)
J. A. Joselyn, Secretary General  [ ], fax:  1 303 497 3645.