IUSS Alert 98 (August 2013)

Dokuchaev award - Alex McBratney

von Liebig award - Magdi Selim

The IUSS is extremely proud to announce that the 2014 winner of the Dokuchaev award is Alex McBratney from the University of Sydney, Australia, and the 2014 winner of the von Liebig award is Magdi Selim of Louisiana State University, USA. The IUSS Dokuchaev and von Liebig awards are presented at each World Congress of Soil Science to recognize outstanding contributions to soil science; these prestigious awards are generally regarded as the Nobel prize in soil science. Each award consists of an engraved medal, a certificate, a honorarium, and financial support to attend the presentation at the World Congress of Soil Science in Korea in 2014. Earlier winners of the Dokuchaev award were Victor Targulian (2006) and Dan Yaalon (2010); winners of the von Liebig award were Rattan Lal (2006) and Don Sparks (2010).

Universal Soil Classification System Working Group Meeting

The Universal Soil Classification System is a Working Group under Commission 1.4 (Soil Classification) which is part of Division 1 (Soil in Space and Time) of the International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS). This IUSS Working Group will meet August 1-4, 2013 in Florianópolis, Brazil following the Brazilian Soil Science Society Meetings. The goal of this working group is to develop a Universal Soil Classification system by working with all sectors of the Soil Science community to improve the consistency of soil classification tools and too use the most up to date information, data and technology to enhance Soil Classification by developing a common language to describe soils that can be used internationally. The working group is comprised of members from around the world with expertise in Soil Taxonomy from different areas of expertise and knowledge in different taxonomic systems. The focus of the Universal Soil Taxonomy Working Group will be on taxonomic issues of soils, with special attention on morphology and taxonomy of tropical and cold soils. Other issues that will be discussed are 1) progress in the horizon nomenclature harmonization, 2) progress in the diagnostic horizon studies, 3) progress in the development of a horizon classification system, 4) taxonomic relationships of mollic soils, 5) the calculated centroids of the US Soil Taxonomy Great Groups and 6) soil moisture and temperature. More information about the Working Group and the task groups can be found at  http://soils.usda.gov/technical/classification/Univ_Soil_Classification_System/

20th World Congress of Soil Science – Korea

 We are pleased to announce that the 20th World Congress of Soil Science will be held at the International Convention Center Jeju (ICC Jeju) on Jeju Island, Korea, from June 8th to 13th, 2014. The theme of the conference is Soils Embrace Life and Universe, and the congress is also a celebration of 90 years IUSS. Jeju is an oval-shaped volcanic island with 1,950 meter Halla Mountain in the middle. Jeju is known for its unique volcanic features making the entire island a volcanic museum. Numerous species of plants from polar to subtropical abound, which make it a treasure trove of nearly 1,800 varieties. The website of the 20th World Congress of Soil Science (WCSS) is www.20wcss.org and you will find valuable information and announcement by the Organizing Committee. We cordially invite you to join us and be part of the 20th World Congress of Soil Science. We hope that you will take this chance to explore one of the most exciting and wonderful countries in the world. We are looking forward to seeing you on Jeju Island. For further information see www.20wcss.org or e-mail

Key dates:  

Abstract Submission Open: May, 2013

On-line Registration Open: June, 2013

Deadline for Abstract Submission: October 31, 2013

Notification of Abstract Acceptance: January 15, 2014

Deadline for Early Registration; March 20, 2014

Deadline for Regular Registration: May 8, 2014



Soil Change Matters 2014, 24-27 March 2014, Bendigo, Australia. Soils change in response to land use, land management and climate. Understanding the mechanisms and rates of change in fundamental soil properties, and their extent across the landscape, is critical for management of soil and land to ensure enduring productivity and provision of ecosystem services. Soil Change Matters will bring together scientists who can explain the critical changes in soils, particularly during the past century of increasingly intense land use.  Soil Change Matters will include dialogue between policy makers and scientists to clarify policy needs, as well as the current capability of soil knowledge systems and soil monitoring approaches.  We invite you to be part of this international workshop organised by the Victorian Government's Department of Environment and Primary Industries, and supported by Soil Science Australia and the International Union of Soil Sciences. Please visit www.soilmatters.org

9th International Symposium AgroEnviron, 3-7 August 2014 in Goiânia, Brazil. With the theme “Impacts of Agrosystems on the Environment: challenges and opportunities”, the scientific program will focus on problems and solutions related to the environmental sustainability of agrosystems. The conference will address broad topics on soil and water conservation and management, agriculture and environmental policies, environmental sustainability, technology innovation, and education. A guided one-day field trip to the savannah with examples of tropical agriculture is included in the registration fees. Abstracts submission is open at www.agroenviron2014.com 

International Conference Protection of soil functions - challenges for the future, 16-18 October 2013, Pulawy, Poland. Currently the big challenge for the research society is to integrate existing and generate new knowledge on measures for soil protection and mitigation or compensation of loss in soil quality. The goal of the conference is to discuss the problems and challenges related to protection of main soils functions with particular emphasis on the following topics: methods to evaluate soil functions; measures for soil protection; soil acidification; management and protection of urban soils; risk assessment of soil degradation; remediation; soil biodiversity; policy measures for improvement of soil functions; protection of organic soils; case studies. The announcement and registration form can be downloaded from the web page  http://proficiency-fp7.eu/

 Soil micromorphology

One year after the 14th International Working Meeting on Soil Micromorphology, the first issue of the proceedings, with seven selected papers presented at the meeting, have been published in the Spanish Journal of Soil Science. These open-access proceedings, with Irina Kovda and Curtis Monger as guest editors, cover sessions 1 to 4 of the meeting:  http://sjss.universia.net/pdfs_revistas/revista_35_1373878761852.pdf.  The separate papers can be downloaded from:  http://sjss.universia.net/verRevista.jsp. A second volume will appear on November the 15th. The proceedings of Session 5 of the meeting will be published as special issue of Quaternary International, with Richard MacPhail as guest editor. The meeting proceedings are dedicated to the late micromorphologists Ulrich Babel and Nicolas Fedoroff.


New Publications

The Soils of Croatia. Series: World Soils Book Series. By Bašić, Ferdo. 2013, XII. Springer. ISBN: 978-94-007-5814-8. Hardcover, 240 pages. Price $129.00. The Soils of Croatia is a six-chapter book detailing all aspects of Croatian soils. The book presents, in a reader friendly way, the lively history of pedology in Croatia. It explains soils as natural resources for this country and offers a detailed view on the different agricultural regions referenced in Croatia. The Soils of Croatia also contains useful information regarding the different factors of soil genesis in the different regions as well as on soil taxonomy and it gives a very detailed classification of different Croatian Soils. Overall, this book contains everything that pedologists, students and anyone else interested in Croatian soils should know about.

Organic Compounds in Soils, Sediments & Sludges: Analysis and Determination. By T Roy Crompton. November 29th 2012. CRC Press. Taylor & Francis. ISBN: 978-0-415-64427-3. Price $159.95. The increasing awareness of the effects of pollutants in the eco-system and on the development of suitable methods of analysis has stimulated a lot of research recently. This volume comprehensively discusses the range of methods available for the analysis and determination of organic compounds in soils, river and marine sediments and industrial sludges. A review is provided of the instrumentation used in soil and sediment laboratories and an indication of the types of organics that can be determined by each technique. Subsequent chapters discuss the analysis of various types of organics in a logical and systematic manner. Guidance is provided on the applicability of techniques in certain environments, the advantages and disadvantages of using one method over another, likely interference, the sensitivity of particular techniques, and detection limits. The work will be of interest to agricultural chemists, agriculturists concerned with ways in which organic chemicals used in crop or soil treatment permeate the ecosystem and to biologists and scientists involved in fish, plant and insect life. Toxicologists, public health workers, oceanographers, and environmentalists will also find the book beneficial.

Quantifying and Modeling Soil Structure Dynamics. By Sally Logsdon, Markus Berli, and Rainer Horn, Editors. Soil Science Society of America. Hardcover. 208 pp., 2013. Advances in Agricultural Systems Modeling 3. ISBN: 978-0-89118-956-5 (print). Also available at  https://dl.sciencesocieties.org/publications/books. Quantifying and Modeling Soil Structure Dynamics emphasizes a systems approach to how soil structure changes in response to inputs and to the environment. Soil structure is a dynamic, complex system affected by tillage, wheel traffic, roots, soil life, shrink–swell, and freeze–thaw. In turn, soil structure affects root growth and function, soil fauna, solute transport, water infiltration, gas exchange, thermal and electrical conductivities, traffic bearing capacity, and more. Ignoring soil structure or viewing it as "static" can lead to poor predictions and management. Readers will especially appreciate the description of soil structure influence on endpoints, such as environmental contamination and efficient water use, and how models should be adjusted to include dynamic soil structure components for accurate outputs.

Enhancing Understanding and Quantification of Soil-Root Growth Interactions. By Dennis Timlin and Laj R. Ahuja, editors. ASA, CSSA, and SSSA. Hardcover. 324 pp., 2013; Advances in Agricultural Systems Modeling 4. ISBN: 978-0-89118-338-9 (print). Also available at  https://dl.sciencesocieties.org/publications/books. Researchers must come together and leverage our understanding of the rhizosphere to maximize efficient, sustainable use of limited water and soil nutrient resources. Enhancing Understanding and Quantification of Soil–Root Growth Interactions takes on this challenge to solve society's growing problems in the conservation of quality water and soil resources—from addressing the critical needs in nations who cannot afford costly fertilizers, to the global challenge of enhancing soil carbon storage to reduce climate change effects of elevated carbon dioxide. This book brings together scientists from different disciplines, worldwide, together to encourage synthesis of transdisciplinary knowledge and further research and developments in the area of root–soil interactions.

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