Lille Online 2021: Registration open! Website and first circular now available

Dear all, 

We are delighted to now share with you the first circular and website for the Absolutely final meeting of IGCP 653 which will be held in conjunction with the new Ordovician-focused IGCP 735 as an online zoom conference.

The online Lille meeting will take place over four days: Monday 13th to Thursday 16th, September 2021.

The main topic of the Lille 2021 meeting is the ‘Ordovician of the World.

Several online keynote lectures as well as regular talks and short ‘Lightning’ talks will be scheduled, with sessions in different time zones, to cover most parts of the world.

In addition to the abstract volume, we also plan to produce a special issue in an international journal. Please, indicate your interest if you wish to submit a conference paper.

We invite all contributions on all aspects of Ordovician palaeontology and geology!The first circular is here: 

The conference website is here:

Like our 2020 annual  meeting, registration is FREE, but required to receive the zoom links each day.  Online registration is here with a email registration option here for those for whom the online system is not a good option. 

–Thomas Servais and rest of the conference organizers

Absolutely final meeting + IGCP 735 successor project!

Hello IGCP 653 member,

We hope that you are all in good health during this difficult period, which has now been with us for over a year.

As you know, IGCP 653 was scheduled from 2016 and 2020. For the final year, 2020, several meetings were planned, but all were cancelled because of the Covid-19 pandemic. However, the official closing congress was organized in Copenhagen, Denmark, although the meeting was entirely virtual.

AD 2021 was supposed to be ‘on extended term’ (OET, without finance from the UNESCO), with an ‘absolutely final meeting’ in Lille, France, and several other events (see our website). With the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, it is now also uncertain if we will be able to organise any meeting in 2021 with the physical presence of IGCP 653 participants.

The Lille meeting was scheduled for September 10th – 20th, 2021, with a pre-congress field excursion to Belgium and France (September 10th-12th), indoor sessions (September 13th-15th), and a post-congress field excursion to Wales and the Welsh Borderlands, UK (September 16th-20th). The excursions will most probably be postponed (in the next few months), but the indoor sessions will occur, but possibly also mostly as a virtual meeting. Please, keep these dates in your diaries, because we will definitely organise at least a virtual congress, that will allow all of you to present your (final) results of the project IGCP 653.

Very soon, we will inform you about the context of the congress, with deadlines, and details for abstract submission, etc. Registration for the online meeting is free, and we hope to be able to organize a congress that will be as successful as the virtual Copenhagen meeting in September 2020.

The project IGCP 653 is thus ‘virtually’ over! However, we are very happy to announce that a ‘successor project’ has just been accepted by UNESCO.

The new IGCP  project on the Ordovician, entitled ‘Rocks and the Rise of Ordovician Life’ (‘Rocks n’ROL’) was submitted last October ( The eight co-leaders (Bertrand LEFEBVRE, France; Yves CANDELA, UK; Khadija EL HARIRI, Morocco; Mansoureh GHOBADIPOUR, Iran; Elena RAEVSKAYA, Russia; Oive TINN, Estonia; Beatriz WAISFELD, Argentina; Wenhui WANG, China) are delighted to inform you that this new IGCP  has been officially accepted by the IGCP board at UNESCO, and it will run from 2021 to 2025 (

The new project number is 735, so after several previous International Geoscience Projects dedicated to the Ordovician (n°410, n°503, n°653) Ordovician research now continues in the frame of the new project IGCP n°735 Rocks n’ROL!

The official opening meeting of the new 5-year project IGCP 735 will be organized together with the absolutely final meeting of IGCP 653 in September 2021. This will enable a smooth transition between the two projects.

Therefore, please, note in your agenda the closing meeting of IGCP 653 that will serve also as the opening meeting of IGCP 735: September 13th-15th, 2021!

Looking forward to meeting you soon at conferences, virtual meetings, workshops or in the field,

Thomas Servais and the co-leaders of IGCP 653

Bertrand Lefebvre and the co-leaders of IGCP 735

IGCP 653 Virtual Meeting Wrap-up

THANK YOU to everyone who participated in Zooming in on the GOBE and helped to make is such a successful conference!  We had over 200 registrants from 29 countries join in the meeting. This has been a truly global meeting!

Presentations by 45 speakers covered topics from paleobiology to geochemistry and all aspects of the Ordovician (and adjacent time intervals).  It was a wonderful week of sharing our science, ideas, and connecting with colleagues.

You can now watch and rewatch the sessions from the conference on the IGCP Project 653 YouTube Channel: 

We look forward to seeing you again soon online or in-person!

Annual Meeting of IGCP 653: Zooming in on the GOBE

The IGCP Project 653 Virtual Conference kicks off today! More than 180 scientists from 25 countries have registered to join the conference. We are very excited to offer this platform to bring our global community together to connect and share our science.

Conference overview:

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Times are provided as UTC+0 – you can determine these times at your location using detailed schedule below for time zones with many participants and the handy website  for all other locations.

Schedule at a glance:  Download the schedule at a glance: Excel Sheet or PDF . Download the full schedule with all authors indicated: PDF

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Abstract Volume: Download PDF

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Abstract deadline for the annual meeting (online!)

Dear IGCP 653-ers,  

Have you submitted your abstract for the Annual Meeting of the IGCP 653: “Zooming in on the GOBE” to be held online September 7-10, 2020?

Over 50 colleagues from 19 countries have already registered for our first-ever online conference. We are excited to be able to provide a platform for our members to share their science and collaborate with our international community.  We hope that you will be able to join us!  

If have have not yet registered or submitted an abstract, visit the meeting website at to learn more.  There is no cost to register for this Zoom-based conference, but registration is required to participate.

Due to the strong response, we are extending the abstract submission deadline to August 7th.  The abstract template is available here: We look forward to seeing you online!

–Christian Mac Ørum Rasmussen, Alycia Stigall and rest of the Project 653 team

GOBEnhagen Postponed. Annual meeting now Online!

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, we are moving the Copenhagen meeting once more. The new dates are yet to be finalised but provisionally we aim for late May, 2021.

On the announced September dates (7th–10th) we will instead organise a virtual Annual Meeting of IGCP 653 via Zoom. This meeting, entitled ”Zooming in on the GOBE” will have no registration fees, but registration is required .

For more details on registration and abstract submission for this new virtual meeting, please click here.

–Christian Mac Ørum Rasmussen and rest of the Project 653 team

GOBEnhagen update: Abstract extension to April 15 and Coronavirus update

Dear all, 

Due to the developing coronavirus outbreak, we are extending the abstract submission and Early Bird registration deadline for the Closing Meeting of IGCP 653 until April 15th, 2020.

The Danish authorities have taken precautionary measures to delay the outbreak here. This includes a ban on all flights from ‘high risk areas’ until further notice, and a general advice to avoid larger gatherings as well as avoiding public transport if possible. At the university level, this further means groups larger than 50 people are not allowed, and all social gatherings should be avoided until further notice. Therefore, we advise all participants to postpone making travel and accommodation bookings in connection with the conference unless reimbursement is guaranteed.

We are monitoring the situation closely and will follow the guidelines provided by the national public health authorities.

We obviously hope that the GOBEnhagen meeting will take place in June as planned and we thus continue our efforts to organize the meeting in line with our original schedule. But, in the event that we will have to cancel, or postpone, the conference, all paid fees associated with the conference via the online registration system will be reimbursed.

On behalf of the organizers,
Christian Rasmussen

Annual Meeting: Second Circular for GOBEnhagen

Dear all,

The 2nd circular for the closing meeting of IGCP653 in Copenhagen is now available for download at the conference website.

The circular – and website – is now updated with additional information on the venue, registration costs, as well as information on how and where to register and how to submit conference abstracts.

We hope to see you all in GOBEnhagen in June!

–Christian Mac Ørum Rasmussen and rest of the Project 653 team

IGCP 653 at the Annual Paleontological Association meeting in Valencia, Spain

This year the annual meeting of the Palaeontological Association moved to the Mediterranean City of Valencia, organised by Dr. Carlos Martinez-Perez and his colleagues.

Three days of talks and posters were preceded by an excursion to the Palaeozoic rocks of the Iberian chains and followed by a day trip to the Miocene rocks of the Alicante region. The first day was devoted to a workshop on analytical techniques for the investigation of fossils and Maria McNamara (University College Cork) presented the annual address on taphonomy.

There was a strong presence of members of IGCP 653 throughout the conference, and on the first night some 25 project members met at a local restaurant to discuss aspects of the programme and enjoy some good food and wine from the region. Many young, early-career researchers attended together with a number of stalwarts of Lower Palaeozoic research. And later in the final, plenary session of the conference, two project leaders, Harper and Servais together with Cascales-Minana presented their own take on Early Palaeozoic diversity.

It was a wonderful setting for the annual conference, and a great opportunity to present some of our results from IGCP 653.

-synopsis by D.A.T. Harper, photos by Juan Carlos Gutiérrez Marco

First Circular for the 2020 Closing meeting in Copenhagen

Dear all, 

The 1st Circular of the Closing Meeting of IGCP Project 653 is now available online. The conference entitled ‘A Baltic perspective on the role of the GOBE: High resolution stratigraphy through early Palaeozoic ecosystems change’ will take place from June 8–12, 2020, in the center of Copenhagen.

Field-excursions to destinations in southern Scandinavia are planned in connection with the technical sessions as pre- and post-excursions. As the meeting organizers would like to get a rough overview of the number of participants potentially attending the meeting, they kindly ask you to fill in the preliminary interest form online here.

We hope to see you all at GOBEnhagen 2020!
–Christian Mac Ørum Rasmussen and rest of the Project 653 team