AfQUA - The African Quaternary: Environments, Ecology and Humans

30.01 - 07.02.2015
Cape Town, South Africa

For some time now we have realised that there is a large gap between the four-yearly INQUA International Congresses and the local conferences of INQUA Members. We therefore have great pleasure in announcing the first continent-wide conference on the African Quaternary (AfQUA).

We invite you to share your ideas and concerns, learn new things and develop projects from local to continental scales, and meet colleagues from across Africa and the world. The conference will include invited plenary talks on topics of particular importance, sessions with regular talks and poster sessions.

Further, the AfQUA meetings recognise and specifically address the difficulties in communication when working in Africa. While these impediments can make things difficult for established researchers, they are even more serious for young scientists who are trying to learn their discipline and develop their careers. To help lessen these problems, we plan a series of training workshops to follow the conference. These will cover a range of topics, some practical and some academic, but all addressing skills that Quaternary scientists need to advance and express their science.

We hope that these inter-Congress AfQUA meetings will become a regular feature of the Quaternary calendar and look forward to your participation.

Please email us (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) if you are interested in participating in this initiative.

Programme outline

Oral and poster presentations will be primarily organised into general sessions according to topic, and it is not necessary for presenters to conform their abstracts to a particular session. In addition, there will also be a series of Focus Sessions, which will highlight particular research themes, including:

· African ecology in context
· Dating and correlation of African archives of environmental change and archaeology
· African landscape evolution in the Late Quaternary: linking data to environment
· Molecular-isotopic studies of modern ecosystems and palaeoclimatic changes in Africa
· Quaternary human-environment interactions in Africa: archaeological, ecological, and evolutionary perspectives
· Charcoal and macro-botanical remains
· African climates and environments of the last 2,000 years
· Climate Change in the African Sector of the Southern Hemisphere over the past 60 kyr: intra- and inter-hemispheric patterns and linkages.


Further details will be provided at a later date. Please contact us if you would like to lead a fieldtrip.

Application deadlines

15 September 2014 – abstract submission closes
15 September 2014 – deadline for financial support
30 September 2014 – confirmation of abstract acceptance
30 September 2014 – early bird payment closes
1 November 2014 – final deadline for all registrations and fee payments


We will be attempting to raise funds to support as many early career researchers from Africa as possible. However these days funding bodies are more likely to fund individual applications for conference attendance. It is therefore strongly encouraged that individuals who would like to attend this conference apply for funding independently. Viable avenues for funding will be showcased on the conference’s website as well as Twitter and Facebook pages so please send us any information you may have regarding this aspect.

Anyone wishing to apply to INQUA for funding should note that funding is only available to support research projects so a project meeting should be planned to coincide with the AfQUA meeting. The deadline for applications is 30th January 2014. Detailed information and forms are available at but, if in doubt, email Margaret Avery This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

PAGES-related sessions

Africa2k will hold a session and workshop with oral presentations and posters. A meeting of the group will also take place at the AfQUA meeting.