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Glacial Landsystems Working Group (GLWG)

QRA Annual Discussion Meeting 2017

University of Durham, 4th - 7th January, 2017

Quaternary Engineering Geology: Implications for Glaciated and Periglaciated Terrains

This is GLWGs opportunity to initiate some synergies with engineering geologists and to disseminate our ever-expanding knowledge base on glacial landsystem types. So all GLWGers are strongly recommended to attend and to present either a talk or poster on their research area and thereby provide our engineering colleagues with insights into the complexities of glacial landform and sediment associations.

Meeting Organisers / Leaders: David J.A. Evans (Durham), Julian Murton (Sussex), David Giles (Portsmouth) & Chris Martin (BP).

Co-sponsors: QRA, Engineering Group of the Geological Society, British Periglacial and Permafrost Association and Glacial Landsystems Working Group

Scientific Themes and Session Co-ordinators

  • Glacial and Periglacial Landsystems and Ground Models: Frameworks for Quaternary Engineering Geology (Dave Giles, Sven Lukas & Clare Boston)
  • Offshore Quaternary Landsystems and Ground Models and their Engineering Implications (Julian Murton, Clare Mellett & Bethan Davies)
  • Quaternary Engineering Geology: Case Studies in Glaciated and Periglaciated Terrains (Chris Martin & Dave Giles)
  • Behaviour and Properties of Quaternary Materials (Emrys Phillips, David Toll & Martin Culshaw)
  • Techniques and Developments in Quaternary Engineering Geology in Glaciated and Periglaciated Settings (Mike De Freitas & David Norbury)
  • Land Use Planning, Design, Construction, Geoconservation, Geoarchaeology and our Quaternary Landform and Stratigraphic Record (Mike Winter, Martin Culshaw, Eleanor Brown & Dave Bridgland)

Rationale & Scope

The theme of this ADM arose from the recent development and completion of a guide to engineering geology in glaciated and periglaciated terrains, undertaken by a working party of geologists and geographers under the auspices of the Geological Society and aimed at developing inter-disciplinary collaboration amongst those with expertise in Quaternary science. The meeting aims to bring together a broad range of academics from the earth sciences and geography and practicing engineering geologists working in Quaternary cold climate landscapes in an attempt to communicate recent developments and professional practices across the various disciplines working in Quaternary science more generally. The hope is that this will enable the improved awareness of practices and knowledge across bodies of expertise and initiate future collaboration specifically between the QRA and the engineering geology community.

The meeting also aims to promote new and timely collaboration between scientists and engineers working on cold-climate terrains. There have been substantial recent advances in our scientific understanding of glacial and periglacial processes (e.g. glaciotectonic deformation, ice segregation, solifluction), identification of landsystems and their impacts on different rock types, weathering profiles and sediments. Likewise, ground investigations, both onshore and offshore, have provided important case studies of material behaviour and properties, and identification of geohazards such as relict periglacial shears. In the Quaternary context, improvements in dating of cold-climate sequences, particularly using luminescence and cosmogenic techniques, are improving our understanding of cold-climate chronologies and rates of operation of processes, essential to long-term storage of hazardous materials. With numerous infrastructure projects underway in the UK and beyond, and more planned, it is timely to bring together the engineering and academic communities to cooperate in ground investigations, with valuable cost spinoffs to the engineering projects and important opportunities for academic research projects using major industrial data sets.

If you are engaged in Quaternary engineering geology or geomorphology or interested in learning more about, and potentially contributing to this professional arena then you are encouraged to attend. As this meeting aims to create greater synergy between the engineering geology and Quaternary science communities, we encourage presentations and participation from QRA members on broad aspects of Quaternary research in glaciated and periglaciated terrains in order to initiate and build upon collaborative links with engineering practitioners who will not be fully informed about the state of the art in the Quaternary research arena. As we will have strong representation from the engineering geology profession and potential future employers and consultants, we strongly encourage postgraduate student attendance.

ADM Plenary

  • Professor Jim Griffiths (Plymouth) - The Importance of the Quaternary Period in Engineering Geology

Wiley Keynote

  • Chris Burn (Carleton University, Canada) - Permafrost, Climate Change and Northern Communities

Keynote Speakers (secured so far)

  • Nigel Atkinson (Alberta Geological Survey, Canada)
  • Dag Ottesen (Geological Survey of Norway) - TBC - The Nature and Implications of Quaternary Deposits in the North Sea
  • Geoffrey Boulton (University of Edinburgh) - How Glaciers Impact Engineering Geology - Examples from the Ancient and Modern
  • Keith Gabriel (Gabriel GeoConsulting Ltd.)
  • Jim Rose (Royal Holloway) - Quaternary Science and Society: The Practical Application of Quaternary Knowledge

Registration & Accommodation


  • Early bird (until 31/10/16) = £150 full & £100 student / unwaged
  • Late (1/11/16 to 15/12/16) = £180 full & £130 student / unwaged

*(includes one reception, all lunches, teas and coffees. All logistics, booking and payment covered by Event Durham)

Conference Ice Breaker

  • 4th January, 2017 at 19.00 at Collingwood College, Durham University

Conference Meal

  • At Castle UNESCO World Heritage Site (University College) = £50.00

College B&B Accommodation

  • £40.00 per night at Collingwood College, Durham University (arranged by Event Durham)

Abstract Submission

Abstract submission is now open.

Only one oral presentation per person is permitted. More than one poster, or a poster and an oral presentation are permitted.

Abstracts must be no longer than 250 words.

State clearly for each abstract whether you prefer an oral or poster presentation.

Posters should be in portrait format and no greater than A0 size.

Send abstracts electronically in the format outlined below to: Professor David J.A. Evans -

Deadline: 11th November, 2016.

Abstracts should be formatted as follows:

The title of your abstract at the top of the page, ALL IN CAPITAL LETTERS

First author’s name1, second author’s name2, third author’s name3, etc.

  1. First author’s affiliation, postal address and email address
  2. Second author’s affiliation
  3. Third author’s affiliation etc.

The body of the text starts here. Please place your text in double-spaced Arial 12 font (margin sizes do not matter as we will produce a standardized format). No more than 250 words in an MS Word document. If you create the document on a Mac computer, you must make sure to send it in a format that can be read on a PC. If you send a figure, please send it as a graphics file (not an MS Word file), in a separate attachment, .jpg format is preferred. Include a figure caption at the end of the body of text, separated by a blank line. Do not send more than one figure. It will be assumed that the first named author will present the paper at the meeting, unless we are informed otherwise. Please indicate which of the main meeting themes you would like your talk/poster to be included within (otherwise we will allocate your talk accordingly). The cost of the abstract volume will be included in your registration fee, and you will receive your copy of the abstract volume when you collect your name badge and other meeting materials in the Geography Department main foyer.