10th Swiss Geoscience Meeting, Bern 2012

Mountains – Up and Down

Print page printer

PLENARY SESSION, Friday November 16th 2012
University of Bern, Hauptgebäude, Grosse Schanze. (directions)

Chairperson: Klaus Mezger
13:30 - 14:00
  • Welcome Address by the Vice-Rector of the University of Bern
  • Welcome Address by the President of the Swiss Academy of Sciences

Doris Wastl-Walter
Thierry Courvoisier

14:00 - 14:45
  • Comparative tectonics of the rocky planets: old methods and forgotten hypotheses in creating new viewpoints

    Discovery of tectonic structures on planets other than the Earth revealed that plate tectonics is so far unique to the Earth and here it is the major process that leads to the formation of mountain belts. Knowledge of ideas proposed for understanding the nature of terrestrial tectonics in the past, even if they are now abandoned on Earth, may be illuminating to explain major structures on other planets.

Celâl Şengör
Istanbul Technical University

14:45 - 15:30
  • Snow and climate interactions in a changing climate

    The physical properties of snow change the interactions between the atmosphere and the continental surfaces. Model results and observations illustrate the impact of climate conditions and their change on snowpack characteristics and on the underlying soil in mountain regions.

Eric Brun

Joint SNC-IUGG &
SNC-IUGS Union Lecture

15:30 - 16:15 Coffee break
Chairperson: Rolf Weingartner
16:15 - 17:00
  • Mountain Environment Changes in the Anthropocene Epoch

    Mountain geosystems can be differentiated by relief, hydroclimate and intensity of human modification. The intensity of human modification is the most rapidly changing of these drivers justifying the application of the term Anthropocene Epoch to contemporary changes in mountain environments more than elsewhere. The relative importance of the environmental change drivers will be illustrated with particular reference to the Canadian Cordillera, the Austrian Alps and the Ethiopian Highlands.

Olav Slaymaker
University of British Columbia

17:00 - 17:45
  • The Alps = where mountains rise

    In a European historical perspective the mountain barrier of the Alps has always been a challenge to cope with and a divide in the territorial development of Europe. Only in the 2nd half of the 20th century did the Alps become a common concern of the alpine countries that culminated in the Alpine Convention 1989, in order to preserve this ecologically high potential area. Recently a new debate was launched that questions this preservation strategy, facing climate change challenges, the need for renewable energy supply and a macro-regional development strategy in Europe.

Paul Messerli
University of Bern

Chairperson: Pierre Dèzes
17:45 - 18:25
  • Communications Platform Geosciences
  • Presentation SGM 2013 in Lausanne
  • Festival Erlebnis Geologie 2013
  • Paul Niggli Medal
  • Swiss Geological Society Award
  • CHGEOL Award
Bruno Schädler
Karl Föllmi
Matthias Damo
Christoph Heinrich
Neil Mancktelow
Mikael Hänni
18:30 - ???
  • Swiss Geoscience Party (food, drinks and rejoicing) at UniS for registered participants