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IAG/AIG Newsletter N° 27 (2/2011)

Lettre d’information n° 27 (2/2011)
Association Internationale des Géomorphologues
p. 435-438

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From the Editor’s Desk

Dear Geomorphologists

I thank you all for your kind help and co-operation in enabling me to publish the newsletter on time. I request that you continue this co-operation in order that future issues of the newsletter continue to be published on time.

Sunil Kumar De,

Condolence Message

Stanley Schumm (1927-2011)

It is with a great sense of sadness and loss that we acknowledge the passing Stan Schumm - one of the most outstanding geomorphologists of our time. Stan Schumm was made an Honorary Fellow of the International Association of Geomorphologists at the Tokyo Conference in 2001. His research has informed the work of a generation of geomorphologists throughout the world. His work on fluvial and hillslope systems combined theory and field measurement in a way that advanced the subject to an extent that few others have been able to achieve.

On behalf of the International Association of Geomorphologists, I offer our deepest sympathy to his wife Ethel and their family and friends.

Michael Crozier, President, IAG/AIG

Scientific Meeting in honor of Prof. Mateo Gutierrez

A scientific meeting under the theme Geomorphological research in Spain was celebrated in Zaragoza on September 8-9, 2011. The main motivation of the conference was the recognition of the contribution carried out by Prof. Mateo Gutiérrez to the progress of Geomorphology in Spain and its divulgation in Hispanic countries. Mateo Gutiérrez (b. Burgos, 1941) was the President Founder of the Spanish Society of Geomorphology (1987), organized the Sixth International Conference of Geomorphology of the IAG (Zaragoza, 2005), and is the author of the reference Geomorphology text book for Spanish-speakers. Prof. Adrian Harvey presented an opening invited lecture. A special issue of the journal Geomorphology will be published with a selection of contributions.

Francisco Gutierrez, Treasurer, IAG/AIG

Message from the President of The International Association of Geomorphologists

Dear Professor Mateo Gutiérrez and distinguished guests.

It is a privilege and honour for me to extend this greeting on behalf of the International Association of Geomorphologists.

On this special occasion, in recognition of your 70th year, we acknowledge not only your contribution to Spanish geomorphology but also your huge contribution to International geomorphology. For many of us our horizons are only local or national. But you have made an impact that exceeds national boundaries. For the Hispanic world, your papers and books have influenced many geomorphologists around the world. In particular, I refer to the books: Geomorfologia de Espaňia; and Climatic geomorphology. Those are outstanding contributions.

However, you did not rest there. You gave your energy to a wider community. Your service on the executive committee of IAG was widely appreciated. But the outstanding commitment to the International community, represented by your efforts in the organization of the 6th International Geomorphology Conference in Zaragoza, 2005, will long be remembered.

I thank you in my role as President, but also personally, for your contribution for all you have done for the spirit and functioning of International Geomorphology.

Geomorphologists never retire – there are always more hills to look at. May you continue your enjoyment in the hills but be wise enough to send you son to climb them and take the samples.

Best wishes for the future.

Michael Crozier, President, IAG/AIG

The IAG/AIG Regional Conference (Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 18 – 22 February, 2011) booklet on 'Ethiopia’s Rift Valley: its geology and scenery'

At the recent IAG conference in Addis a number of participants expressed interest in obtaining copies of the booklet “Ethiopia’s Rift Valley: its geology and scenery” which was on display at the conference. This booklet has now been printed and is available at a cost of 8 euros per copy,plus 3 euros postage for up to 4 copies. It can be obtained by sending a cheque for that amount, or equivalent in pounds sterling (check current exchange rate) to: Paul Mohr, Tonagharraun, Corandulla. Co Galway, IRELAND (The cheque should be drawn in favour of Paul Mohr).

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Purchasers in the Antipodes may prefer to send a cheque for the equivalent in Australian dollars to: Frances Williams, 3, Kent Avenue, Glenalta, AUSTRALIA (Cheque should be drawn in favour of Frances Williams).

Don’t forget to include the address to which the booklet should be sent!

For any further queries please contact Frances Williams ( or Paul Mohr (

Kind regards
Frances Williams

Michael Crozier, President, IAG/AIG

IAG Keynote lecture at the XVIII Argentinian Geological Congress

From May 2 to 6, 2011 the 18th Argentinian Geological Congress was held in Neuquén, Argentina with more than 1500 participants mostly from South America. Prof. Jorge Rabassa and Dr. Andrea Coronato (both Center at Ushuaia of the National Research Council of Argentina and National University of Patagonia-Ushuaia) were conveners of a special symposium “Quaternary and Geomorphology”. The symposium was very well attended and keynotes were given by two invited speakers, Prof. Nad Rutter (University of Edmonton, Canada) and Prof. Lothar Schrott (University of Salzburg, Austria). The keynote lecture on behalf of the IAG was given by Lothar Schrott on 'New challenges in field based methods in geomorphology'.

Young Geomorphologists Section

IAG/AIG GRANT for the FORMOSE Post-graduate Training School 'Costal hazard assessment and management', Caen, France, 19-25 June 2011

The IAG GRANT of 300 euros offered to post-graduates and PhD students in Geomorphology from EUROPE (except France) has been awarded to Mara NUNES - Portugal

IAG/AIG GRANTS for the International Symposium on Geosite Management, Savoie – Mont-Blanc, France, 5-10 September 2011

The three IAG GRANTS of 300 (three-hundred) euros each, intended to favour participation in the Symposium of PhD students in Geomorphology from EUROPE (except France), have been awarded to: FUERTES-GUTIÉRREZ Inés – Spain; KUBALÍKOVÁ Lucie - Czech Republic; RODRIGUES Joana – Portugal.

Mauro Soldati, IAG/AIG Training Officer

Young Geomorphologists’ reports on the IAG Regional Conference on Geomorphology in Addis Ababa and related LANDMAP Intensive Course on Landslide Mapping in Dessie (Ethiopia), 14-22 February 2011

i. Rebecca Joubert (South Africa)

The thorough organization and co-ordination of the IAG Regional Conference, 2011 in Addis Ababa promoted the diverse array of attendees (roughly 150 participants from 30 countries) who birthed conference topics such as Environmental Change and Human Impacts, Land Degradation and Resilience, Landslide Geomorphology, Tectonic and Volcanic Geomorphology, Fluvial and Wetland Geomorphology, as well as rare geomorphic themes such as Geoheritages and Geoarchaeology, Geodiversity and Geotourism and Planetary Geomorphology. These conference topics enhanced the sharing of knowledge and ideas amongst amateurs and professionals from a diverse array of scientific fields. The keynote lectures related well to most of the geomorphological themes covered during the conference and lectures related to present day research challenges, humans as major drivers of landscape change and the concept of the ‘Anthropocene’ as a new period in geological history, stimulated critical and holistic thinking in Geomorphological Science. The inclusion of pre-, mid- and post- conference field trips to the main Ethiopian Rift Valley and the Northern Ethiopian Highlands provided opportunity to develop both practical and theoretical understanding of tectonic, volcanic and fluvial geomorphological landscapes, thereby enhancing the scientific experience of the conference.

The pre-conference intensive course on landslide mapping provided skills development to young geomorphologists and involved training in practical procedures and theoretical understanding of mapping and characterising landslides and landforms associated with tectonic and fluvial landscapes. The practical component included training in field based methods of identifying and classifying landslides and landforms associated with fluvial, lacustrine and hillslope processes. The course also provided skills training in aerial photographic interpretation and analysis and mapping geomorphological features using Geographical Information Systems (GIS). Practical training was complimented by theoretical lectures relating to processes and drivers of landslide development and dynamics from experts in the field of landslide geomorphology, Giandomenico Fubelli and Jan Moeyersons.

Two of the main personal highlights were day-long field excursions from Addis to Dessie (for the pre-conference landslide mapping course) as well as the mid-conference field excursion to the Blue Nile gorge, during which I gained insight into the beauty and geomorphic diversity of the Ethiopian landscape. Viewing features such as the Afar rift basin, Afar Window and the Borkena River Gorge along the lower Dessie basin broadened my geomorphological experience of rifted and faulted landscapes. The explanations of landscapes and landforms provided by experts during field excursions increased my theoretical understanding of landscape processes and landform development.

I feel I grew in geomorphological experience and knowledge during the 2011 IAG Regional Conference, and am grateful for the opportunity presented by the IAG Organizing Committee through the Grant to attend this conference.

ii. Stéphane Sadiki Ndyanabo (DR Congo)

The present report is about my participation to the LANDMAP intensive course and IAG/AIG Regional Conference held in Addis Ababa from 18 to 22th February 2011, as one of six Young Geomorphologists, beneficiaries of the 1100 Euros IAG/AIG Grant 2011. A total of 13 participants from different countries (4 from Italy, 2 from South-Africa, 2 from Cameroun, 1 from DR Congo, 1 from India, 1 from Soudan and 1 from China) attended the LANDMAP excursion conducted by Professor Giandomenico Fubelli and Jan Moeyersons. The aim of the LANDMAP Excursion was to describe the landscape of Ethiopian plateau and mass movement in the Dessie area, to map and to interpret field observations in ArcGIS 9.3 within the context of sustainable hazard mitigation.

From 19th to 22nd we were attending conference sessions, poster sessions and keynote lectures. Through different speeches as geologist I had another picture of geomorphology and interest on it. In fact, I found out also much information about scholarships (grants) and contacts with different Professors. For this reason, I hope this exceptional occasion to lead me to PhD studies.

I cannot close my report without appreciating the IAG/AIG for the grant; the organizing committee for the good organisation of the conference in general and in particular our accommodation in Dessie; and the Leaders of LANDMAP Intensive Course for their simplicity and way to transfer their knowledge.

I miss Ethiopian foods and dancing and beg the LANDMAP team to keep in touch for our scientific evolution.

iii. Tesfay Araya (Ethiopia)

I would like to thank to International Association of Geomorphology (IAG) for sponsoring me to attend the training on Intensive Course on Landslide Geomorphology and Mapping (LANDMAP) and participate in the IAG Regional Conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. I thank also to Prof. Giandomenico Fubelli and Prof. Jan Moeyersons for their unreserved and dedicated lectures in class and fields on the Landslide Geomorphology and Mapping. Dessie basin and town is an ideal place for both the theoretical and practical aspects of the course. This town is a home for above 205,000 inhabitants who live where there is a potential danger of landslide to occur. The town served us as a good laboratory for our practical training. Thus, I appreciate for those who select Dessie town to be the place for the course to be carried out. The training provided me the ability to identify areas susceptible to landslide and to map such areas. Although most of possible mitigations to landslide are expensive, I was able to know how the technical aspects can be implemented. I also recommend for establishment of office (advisory service) at Dessie town to provide technical information about the near future effects of landslide to administrators and people leaving in the area to protect residents.

Participation at the conference has widened my scope the way I have to look my current research work. Various topics have been addressed in the conference from different angel with diverse content from a number of disciplines within Geomorphology. Thus, I found the conference uniquely helpful to widen my research scope. Another important aspect of this conference was it allows me to meet and discuss with very popular geomorphologist. Beyond that I have established links with them for future communications which will keep me active as Geomorphologist.

iv. Benjamin van der Waal (South Africa):

Thinking back of the 10 days spent in Ethiopia makes me smile. The country is stunning and diverse, especially with regards to geomorphology. The local people were genuinely friendly and proud of their culture and beliefs and had great respect for their land and their women. Towns were always busy, with lots of development. The fields were well protected by terraces which showed that soil is valuable to the farmers.

Not only did I learn about Ethiopia by being in the country, but also about the respective countries of the group (Italy, Belgium, China, Japan, India, Cameroon and the Congo) on our preconference intensive LANDMAP course. The group was friendly and all members were highly sociable and happy to talk about their experiences and ideas. We spent several days exploring the surroundings of Dessie, mapping landslides, fault scarps, terraces, alluvial fans and a number of other landforms. This was a great experience for me as I have never been in a graben, and a number of the landforms were new to me. Spending time in the field with the specialists taught me a lot about landscape interpretation and how to represent it accurately on a map. There was a lot of focus on the subtle differences between the various types of landslides, possible triggers and how they can be avoided. The mapping part of the exercise was challenging at times; looking at stereo aerial photographs, interpreting what was seen and what was noted in the field and transferring it accurately into a GIS. The exposure to open source GIS software was encouraging as it was just as effective, maybe even more user friendly than commercial packages.

Subsequent to the field trip, I enjoyed the conference, it was well organised, not too formal and in a unique setting. The presentations were highly informative and I was exposed to a wide variety of geomorphic processes and challenges regarding environmental change. What really amazed me was the impact that we as humans have on the landscape and how severely that can alter things like natural hazards and vegetation related processes. Presenting my work and receiving feedback was valuable experience. Input from the “heavy weights” was valuable and I feel encouraged to explore more processes and do work that is relevant for our survival.

Thank you so much for the opportunity to visit Ethiopia, to be exposed to a wide variety of research and most of all to meet lovely people that are passionate about the earth and its processes.

v. Zangmo T. Ghislain (Cameroon):

The IAG Regional Conference started by the Welcoming Function in the Lucy Gazebo Restaurant on 18th February at 6 pm. This Ceremony was followed the day after, by the Opening Ceremony in the Awash Hall (Ghion Hotel). The Event gathered around 6 Personalities under the patronage of the State Minister, Minister of Mines of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia. YG grants holders were presented to the panelists to that end. It was also marked by the delivery of attestations of the LANDMAP participation to YG. The Conference was animated by oral and poster presentations. I was interested by oral presentation under the topic “Hazards Zonation and Assessment of the Associated Risks in the Mount Manengouba Calderas (Cameroon Volcanic Line)”. Moreover, mid and post Conference Excursions were organized to that end, and they were very exciting for delegates to discovering some geological features of Ethiopia. A dinner has been offered to YG grants holders by Prof. Mauro Soldati and Prof. Francisco Gutierrez on 21st February at 8 pm. It was a pleased opportunity for us to exchange on some subjects together. The Conference ended by a Closing Ceremony in Yod Abyssinia (cultural restaurant) on 22nd February at 7 pm.

The IAG Regional Conference 2011 in Addis Ababa was an important event that brought together geomorphologists who exchanged on geomorphological issues of the world during 5 days. It was also a significant occasion for YG to spend around 9 days together and exchanging with senior geomorphologists. We thank the IAG Executive Committee through Prof. Mauro Soldati for having allocated grants to facilitate YG to attend the Event. This Event was a springboard for preparing YG for the forthcoming geomorphological challenges that they will face in the future.

vi.GOUNTIE DEDZO Merlin (Cameroon):

In prelude for the IAG/AIG regional conference on geomorphology during which I have orally presented the results of my research work, I participated in LANDMAP Intensive Course on landslide mapping for young geomorphologists from 14 to 18 February 2011in Dessie.

I was one of the 6 grant holders who have benefited from financial support which covering the travel (return ticket), accommodation and the participation fees for intensive course. The aim of the course was to teach to young geomorphologists how to recognize in the field the indices of landslides of different types, and the mapping of these mass movements through the Arc-GIS software and aerial photography using the stereoscope. Coaching on the field and indoor work was masterfully performed by Dr Giandomenico Fubelli and Prof. Jan Moeyersons who by their ability to communicate have quickly accustomed us to the vocabulary of the domain.

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During a dinner offered by Mauro Soldati and Francesco Gutiérrez in the evening of 21 February to 6 grants holders, we talked about our different research domain and especially the importance of inscription of Cameroon at IAG. During the closing ceremony of February 22, the certificates of participation in intensive landmap course were solemnly delivered to the 13 participants. The farewell Banket held at the magnificent Yod Abissinia restaurant permit us to establish important contact with the panelists.

I wish to express my sincere gratitude to IAG conference organizers for the financial support (1100 euros) which permit me to attend the very interesting LANDMAP Intensive Course and to present the result of my work during the conference. My special thanks also go to all LANDMAP participants and leaders for very good friendship spirit.

Mauro Soldati, IAG/AIG Training Officer

Upcoming Seminars/Conferences/Workshops/Trainings Programmes


The Business Meeting of the IUGS Commission on Geo-science for Environmental Management (IUGS-GEM), Bangkok, Thailand, November 13-18, 2011. For more information about the event contact:


28th Convention of Indian Association of Sedimentologists & Seminar on 'Modern and Paleo Sediments: Implications to Changes in Climate, Water Resources and Environment'. Organized by the School of Environmental Sciences, J. Nehru University, New Delhi, India, November 14-16, 2011.. Contact:
Prof. Al Ramanathan


33rd Annual Conference of the Institute of Indian Geographers (IIG) and International Seminar on 'Population, Development and Disaster Management', Tripura University, India, February 8-11, 2012. Last date of abstract submission: November 15, 2011. First circular is available in the important events section of For more details please contact: Dr. Sunil Kumar De, Convener (Conference E-mail:

Czech Republic

International Conference on Groundwater in Fractured Rocks, Prague, Czech Republic,21-24 May 2012.

Further information at


7th European Congress on Regional, Geoscientific Cartography and Information Systems - EUREGEO, Bologna, Italy, June 12-15, 2012. Theme 'Sustainable Geo-Management' organized by the Emilia-Romagna region, in collaboration with the regions of Bavaria (Germany), and Catalonia (Spain). See the website at:


4th International Congress of the European Confederation of Soil Science Societies (ECSSS), Bari, Italy, July 2-6, 2012 Any interested person is cordially invited to submit abstract(s) for scientific symposia and workshops included in the Congress Programme. An informative sheet and a specific window 'Call for Abstracts' available on the Congress website:

The Abstract Call is open and the deadline for submission is strictly fixed on 10 October 2011.


34th International Geological Congress (34th IGC) - 2012, Brisbane, Australia, August 5-10, 2012. For more details and the Second Circular Please visit the IGC website at:

Editor’s Note

The success of the IAG/AIG Newsletter depends upon the contributions that we receive. On behalf of IAG/AIG, I would request you to assist us by supplying information related to the forthcoming activities and innovations in geomorphology in your respective countries (commentaries, reviews of regional or national meetings and field trips, summaries of issues pertinent to geomorphology and announcements of future meetings and workshops. Your contributions should be forwarded to the IAG/AIG Publications Officer.

Published by Sunil Kumar De, IAG/AIG Publications Officer, Department of Geography and Disaster Management, Tripura University (A Central University), Suryamaninagar – 799130, Tripura(West), India. Ph. (mobile): +91-98620 09202, Fax: +91-381-2374802, E-mail:

International Association of Geomorphologists (IAG/AIG)



Victoria University of Wellington, Institute of Geography, Wellington, New Zealand. Ph: +64 (0)4 463 5279,


Géographie Physique, Géoarchéologie, Département de Géographie , Université de Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense (Paris 10), 200 avenue de la République 92001 Nanterre Cedex.
mobile: 00 33 6 70 34 19 38.

School of Geography and Environmental Science, Building 11, Clayton Campus, Monash University,

Victoria 3800 Australia. Office: 61 3 9905 2914, Fax: 61 3 9905 2948, mobile: 042 300 391

Department of Geography and Regional Development, University of Wroclaw, Pl.
Uniwersytecki 1,

50-137 Wroclaw, Poland. Tel.: +48-71 3752295, Fax: +48-71 3435184.

Secretary General

Ghent University, Department of Geography, Research Unit ‘Regional Geomorphology and Geo-archaeology, Krijgslaan, 281 (S8), B-9000 - GENT, Belgium. Ph. : +32 9 264 4690, FAX: +32 9 264 4982

IAG/AIG Account Number: IBAN ES79 0128 0409 7101 0000 1961

Visit the IAG/AIG Website at: