SEGH Events

Supporting Conferences, meetings and events

13 December 2015
A guide to groups interested in hosting an SEGH event.

Introduction & Overview

The major activity of SEGH is to promote, internationally, conferences and symposia addressing the main aims of the Society (www.segh.net ), to encourage active debate and discussion on pressing research issues for experienced and early career researchers in academia, governmental and non-governmental organisations, business and industry.

Meetings are held on a regular basis and are currently organised geographically in Europe, Asia/Pacific and the Americas. The Society has global membership and the Board seeks to include all regions in events. Currently, SEGH promotes three types of event:

1. The International Symposium on Environmental Geochemistry (ISEG).

This is the key International meeting on Environmental Geochemistry, held every 3 years since 1991, jointly promoted by SEGH, International Association of Geochemistry, and the International Medical Geology Association (IMGA). The meeting is typically 4-5 days (+ field trips) attracting ~200-300 + delegates, with parallel sessions and has support from a number of relevant organisations. This meeting will be coordinated on behalf of the supporting societies by the International Association of Geochemistry (IAGC), and through a board with representation from IMGA and SEGH.

2. Annual SEGH events.

These meetings are regularly organised regionally, typically 2-3 days (+ field trip) attracting ~60-100 delegates. Since the 1980s the most successful regional conferences have been the SEGH Meetings held in Europe (the International board are keen to promote regional activities more widely).

3. Specific, focused workshops, symposia or task force activities

Less regular events, in a variety of formats (e.g. one day meetings, jointly hosted or longer working group activities). A specific focus or a timely issue normally stimulates the organisation and SEGH has been able to support a number of such events which have had significant impact on the scientific community and often resulted in special issues of the Society’s journal Environmental Geochemistry & Health. Examples include: Environmental Chromium contamination and remediation (v23 (3) 2001); Changes in Soil Quality & Its Remediation (v26 (2-3) 2004), Arsenic in the Environment – Risks & Management Strategies (v31 (S1), 2009), Environment & Human Health (v31 (2), 2009; Practical Applications of Medical Geology (v32 (6), 2010).

The Society For Environmental Geochemistry & Health

The SEGH International Board, with regional representation welcomes offers to host SEGH supported meetings and events. The Board meets regularly, and regional chairs (and local members) undertake to identify hosts and stimulate the organisation of meetings. The Board (International and Regional) coordinate programme of meetings, reviewing proposals and accepting/nominating hosts for events. This includes synchronising meetings and forward planning to try to ensure SEGH supported meetings do not clash with other related events.

Support from SEGH and structure of events

There are few if any “rules”, but SEGH, over the last 30 years of activity has a loose format and process which has been successful:

• the registration fee should offer a discount fee for members of SEGH (we have member and student member grades) and a non member fee which includes annual SEGH membership (this membership fee is passed to SEGH who then provide Springer journal subscription fees for members to online access to the complete EGAH catalogue); SEGH will support (and help judge) prizes for best student oral and poster presentations; any "profit" from the conference is normally split between SEGH and the organisers; SEGH board and members will support the host with advice on organisational aspects, getting contacts and in disseminating/advertising the event to their own networks, as well as providing many of the delegates. Typical format is for a regional meeting is for 2 or 3 days of presentations, with an optional field visit and a few "star speakers" which follow the normal (and a few unusual) topics of SEGH interest. We hope for a broad set of topics, so our members can see a place to offer presentations, but also learn something new. The link between “environment” and “health” is a core theme.

Questions for organisers

Have you considered the following issues, and whether you:

1. Have support from your institution – are you able to get reduce costs of room hire, facilities etc?

2. Can access website space be available and supported for a conference web site?

3. Can access efficient on-line registration (and payment) facilities?

4. Have organisational support from colleagues to set up and run the event?

5. Can obtain support grants or sponsorship from networks / organisations?

6. Can you provide a good social element for the meeting – conference dinner and mixer events?

7. Set a fee level to attract delegates and ensure breakeven / minor profit from the meeting?

8. Can you provide access to suitable accommodation and ensure the logistics of arrival at the conference venue is straight forward – providing a number of options for delegates is ideal, some will bring accompanying persons, others will have very restricted budget. Consider the physical journey for delegates and try to organise to make it as straightforward as possible.

Application/Expression of interest.

The SEGH board is keen to receive offers to host meetings or events falling into any of the above categories. The Board would like to receive a formal request containing as much information and outline of arrangements for the meeting. This will then be considered and in the event of competing bids for meetings, the Board will arrange a “vote” and the applicants informed of the board’s decision.

On behalf of the Society for Environmental Geochemistry & Health 22 November 2012

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Science in the News

Latest on-line papers from the SEGH journal: Environmental Geochemistry and Health

  • Erratum to: Solid-state UV-MALDI mass spectrometric quantitation of fluroxypyr and triclopyr in soil 2016-10-01
  • Assessment of relative bioavailability of heavy metals in soil using in vivo mouse model and its implication for risk assessment compared with bioaccessibility using in vitro assay 2016-10-01

    Abstract

    There is limited study to simultaneously determine the relative bioavailability of heavy metals such as Cd, Pb, Cu, Cr(VI), and Ni in soil samples. In the present study, the bioaccessibility of heavy metals using in vitro assay was compared with the relative bioavailability of heavy metals using in vivo mouse model. The bioaccessibility of heavy metals ranged from 9.05 ± 0.97 % (Cr) to 42.8 ± 3.52 % (Cd). The uptake profile of heavy metals in soil and solution samples in mouse revealed that the uptake kinetics could be fitted to a two-compartment model. The relative bioavailability of heavy meals ranged from 34.8 ± 7.0 % (Ni) to 131 ± 20.3 % (Cu). Poor correlation between bioaccessibility and relative bioavailability of heavy metals was observed (r 2 = 0.11, p > 0.05). The relative bioavailability of heavy metals was significantly higher than the bioaccessibility of heavy metals (p < 0.05). The present study indicated that the in vitro digestion method should be carefully employed in risk assessment.

  • Chemical contamination of soils in the New York City area following Hurricane Sandy 2016-10-01

    Abstract

    This paper presents a unique data set of lead, arsenic, polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB), and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) concentrations in soil samples collected from the metropolitan New York City area in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Initial samples were collected by citizen scientists recruited via social media, a relatively unusual approach for a sample collection project. Participants in the affected areas collected 63 usable samples from basements, gardens, roads, and beaches. Results indicate high levels of arsenic, lead, PCBs, and PAHs in an area approximately 800 feet south of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) Superfund site at Newtown Creek. A location adjacent to the Gowanus Canal, another Superfund site, was found to have high PCB concentrations. Areas of high PAH contamination tended to be near high traffic areas or next to sites of known contamination. While contamination as a direct result of Hurricane Sandy cannot be demonstrated conclusively, the presence of high levels of contamination close to known contamination sites, evidence for co-contamination, and decrease in number of samples containing measureable amounts of semi-volatile compounds from samples collected at similar locations 9 months after the storm suggest that contaminated particles may have migrated to residential areas as a result of flooding.