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Emergence of a Paradigm

Once considered vast and unconnected, Earth's surface environment is now seen as finite and highly interconnected by a complex web of feedbacks among the biota, oceans, atmosphere, lithosphere, and cryosphere. This Earth systems paradigm is being shaped by geoscientists and their colleagues in diverse disciplines of the natural sciences. Together we are seeking a better understanding of the nature of these feedbacks in the modern world, how they have emerged and evolved over Earth history, and how they will respond to human perturbations in the future.

The Geological Society of America (GSA) and the Geological Association of Canada (GAC) are combining their resources, as GSA did with the Geological Society of London in 2001, to co-convene a broad, interdisciplinary meeting to discuss the advances made in the last four years in our understanding of Earth System Processes.

The Geological Society of America and The Geological Association of Canada

Invite You to Attend

On behalf of the Geological Society of America, I invite you to attend and participate in Earth System Processes 2, a meeting jointly organized and co-convened with the Geological Association of Canada.

Earth system science has become the preeminent integrative model for all the different science branches that deal with the solid, liquid, and gaseous Earth and its interactive processes. The GSA and GAC membership is collectively in an excellent position to continue playing a very central role in the exploration on geological time scales of the many controversial hypotheses that describe the nature of environmental and biotic evolution. To succeed in their never-ending quest for a better understanding of the processes in the geosphere that drive this evolution, geoscientists must join forces and are encouraged to do so in Calgary in August 2005 to map what is known and project where we shall wish to go in the coming decades. Earth is an immensely complex system, which can only be understood by joining forces as we plan our next research projects. This conference is intended to bring together specialists from all fields interested in our natural Earth and planetary environment. Given the success of the first ESP meeting in Edinburgh in 2001, which was co-convened by GSA and the Geological Society (London), I can confidently predict that the Calgary meeting will again be an eye-opener and a gratifying experience for all who decide to attend.

Rob Van der Voo
Past President, Geological Society of America


The Geological Association of Canada is pleased to join with the Geological Society of America to cosponsor the Earth Systems Processes 2 conference in Calgary, Alberta, 8-11 August 2005.

ESP2 is a broad interdisciplinary conference aimed at enhanced understanding of the past, present, and future processes that drive the evolution of Earth. The study of earth system processes is inherently integrative and interdisciplinary, and hence it is the hope of the organizers that the conference will attract a wide range of scientists interested in understanding Earth's complexity, irrespective of their background. ESP2 targets not only members of both GSA and GAC, but also the wider scientific community, with the objective of encouraging holistic scientific exchange regarding this crucial topic.

It is particularly appropriate that GSA and GAC are collaborating in the organization of this conference, as the two organizations have much in common in the diversity and multidisciplinary makeup of their memberships. It is the hope of GAC that this meeting will initiate a longer term, closer collaboration between the two organizations. From the perspective of the GAC, ESP2 will also serve to provide an opportunity to highlight the excellence of earth systems science work in Canada to an international audience.

Calgary, Alberta, is a particularly exciting venue for the conference, being a major center for industry, government, and university earth science in Canada.

The ESP2 conference is timely as the important role of earth science in global society becomes increasingly apparent to scientists, politicians, and the general public. On behalf of GAC, I extend to you a sincere invitation to participate in this major scientific event.

Sandra M. Barr
President, Geological Association of Canada


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