News from the Sector – October

Images in banner © Horniman Museum and Gardens

News from the Sector is a monthly blog series featuring the latest geological and palaeontological news, jobs, exhibitions, and conferences. If you or your institution has anything they would like to add, or advertise on GCG’s News from the Sector, please get in touch at

Conferences and Workshops

The Pest Odyssey Network and Care of Collections Group Open Meeting will be on the 16th October 2019 at the Museum Collection Centre, Birmingham Museums Trust. Booking is through EventBrite, just follow the link above.

The Palaeobotany and Palynology Specialist Groups are holding a joint meeting on the 23rd and 24th October 2019, hosted by The Linnean Society of London. You don’t need to book in advance, and the event is free.

The Linnean Society of London is holding a one day conference called A “Central and Controlling Incident”: Celebrating ‘The Malay Archipelago’ and the Intellectual Legacy of Alfred Russel Wallace on the 7th November 2019. Registration is £25 (£15 for students) and includes lunch, refreshments and a wine reception.

NatSCA, Bristol Culture and the Natural History Museum London are hosting a one day workshop called An Introduction to Mobilising your Collection’s Biodiversity Data, to take place at the M Shed in Bristol, on the 11th November 2019. “The workshop is aimed at people working with natural sciences collections who have a background in the subject but no experience of data mobilisation. Its focus is biological collections.”

Geo-East is holding a one day conference on the 23rd November 2019 at the British Antarctic Survey’s Aurora Centre in Cambridge, called Jurassic East. “Subjects covered during the day will include our region’s fascinating Jurassic geology and palaeontology, our legacy landscapes and the Jurassic collections of the Sedgwick Museum“.

Our (that is, the Geological Curators’ Group) Annual Conference and AGM are due to take place from the 10th to the 11th December 2019. The fantastically provocative theme is Are Museum Collections too Precious for Research? The meeting will take place at the Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences, University of Cambridge, and is set to include a drinks reception and conference dinner.

The annual conference and AGM of the Palaeontological Association will be hosted by the University of Valencia, from the 18th to the 20th December. There are two field trips planned, one pre-conference from 15th – 17th December, and one post-conference on the 21st December. More information can be found on the PalAss website.

The Marine Reptile Conference will take place at the Etches Collection: Museum of Jurassic Marine Life in Kimmeridge, Dorset from the 5th to the 7th May 2020. The primary focus will be on the fossil record, covering both marine reptiles and other organisms which formed part of their ecosystems, however a session will also take place on modern marine reptiles, and abstracts from researchers studying all aspects of this field are welcomed.

The 10th International ProGEO Symposium will take place in Segovia, Spain from the 8th to the 11th June 2020. “This symposium is an international event open to scientists, students, educators, professionals, decision-makers and anyone involved in geoconservation”.

© Horniman Museum and Gardens

Exhibitions and Events

The British Dinosaurs: From Fossils to Feathers exhibition at Tring Natural History Museum, closes this Friday, on the 11th October 2019. So if you want to ‘Explore the surprising diversity of British dinosaur species and find out about the dinosaurs that still live among us in our gardens and parks’, then get over there quick.

The Oxford University Museum of Natural History is hosting Jurassic Brain Teasers; “Recent advances in computer technology have transformed the way fossils can be studied… Dr Stephan Lautenschlager explains how modern computer technology allows palaeontologists to study the brain anatomy of fossil animals”. Taking place on the 22nd October 2019, tickets are free but must be booked in advance via EventBrite.

The Oxford University Museum of Natural History is also hosting a fantastic sounding event called ‘Specimen Standoff‘ in which…. “two teams of palaeontological researchers will be competing against each other in a battle to convince you – the audience – that their specimen, and their team, is the best of them all!” The event will take place at the OUMNH on 29th October 2019; doors open at 6pm.

The Linnean Society of London is holding an afternoon event called The Impostor Syndrome: Why successful people often feel like frauds. It will be held at the Linnean Society in Burlington House, between 2.30pm and 5.30pm, on the 9th November 2019. Relevant to many fields, no doubt including our own.

A new photographic exhibition called Earth Photo explores the diversity of our earth through imagery. It opens on the 19th November at Grizedale Visitors Centre, Grizedale, Ambleside, and runs until the 20th April 2020. The photographs cover four categories: People, nature, place and changing forests.

An exhibition dedicated to our moon has opened at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich. “Reconnect with the wonders of the Moon through artefacts, artworks and interactive moments, and discover how it has captivated and inspired us throughout history.” The Moon is open from now until the 5th January 2020.

The Fossil Swamp is on at National Museum Cardiff, part of Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales, and is due to run until the 17th May 2020. “This new exhibition reveals a snapshot in time from 300 million years ago – when a vast tropical swamp covered what is now Wales. The Fossil Swamp had monster plants, giant insects, thunderstorms and floods.”

© Horniman Museum and Gardens

Job Vacancies

Somerset Heritage Centre is advertising for a Curator to join their team. The deadline is 9am on the 14th October 2019.

Rather peripheral but the University of Cambridge is looking for a Researcher in African Quaternary Archaeology and Hominin Palaeoecology. The deadline is the 18th October 2019.

The National Museum of Ireland is seeking an Assistant Keeper Grade II (Zoology). The deadline is 5pm on 18th October 2019.

Not a ‘job vacancy’ per se, but the Royal Pavilion and Museums Trust is seeking to recruit four new Trustees including a new Chair of the Trustees Board. The deadline for both is 25th October 2019.

The Museum of Paleontology and Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Michigan are advertising a shared Coordinator of Social Media, Website and Office Duties position. Information regarding the deadline is as follows: “Job openings are posted for a minimum of seven calendar days.  The review and selection process may begin as early as the eighth day after posting. This opening may be removed from posting boards and filled anytime after the minimum posting period has ended”

The Oxford University Museum of Natural History is advertising two PhD positions; The origin and evolution of respiratory and feeding systems in primitive vertebrates and their closest relatives, and The hydrodynamics and sensory evolution of Mesozoic marine reptiles, however they also encourage potential PhD candidates to get in touch with their own research ideas as well. The deadline for the aforementioned titles is the 24th January 2020.

Although not curatorial, there is a whole host of geoscience jobs on this site: Geoscience Research and Technical Jobs.

© Horniman Museum and Gardens

Send us Your Stuff

If you would like to contribute content to our monthly blog series News from the Sector (and get some free advertising!), please get in touch with Emma Nicholls, email

© Horniman Museum and Gardens

News from the Sector is compiled by Dr Emma Nicholls, Deputy Keeper of Natural History at the Horniman Museum and Gardens.

Images throughout © Horniman Museum and Gardens

Please note, events listed above are not necessarily endorsed by the Geological Curators’ Group. If you have any concerns about a listing, please get in touch with Blog Editor, Emma Nicholls, at

© Horniman Museum and Gardens

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