Inter- and Transdisciplinary Sessions
Disciplinary sessions

PC – Press conferences

Programme group chair: Gillian D'Souza


Now more than ever, water resources are in the spotlight because of geopolitics and climate change. During this press conference, we hear from researchers about a metalliferous Cretaceous formation that pollutes pristine Arctic waters, the ingenious use of isotopic fingerprinting in Italy to unmask environmental polluters, and how the finance sector has a crucial role to play in addressing the global water crisis.


Stephen Grasby
Geological Survey of Canada, Calgary, Canada

Alessandro Gargini
Department of Biological, Geological and Environmental Sciences, Alma Mater Studiorum University of Bologna, Italy

Rick Hogeboom
University of Twente, Engineering Technology, Water Engineering and Management, Enschede, Netherlands

Convener: Gillian D'Souza
Mon, 24 Apr, 14:00–15:00 (CEST)
Press centre
Mon, 14:00

In March, EMM, the first interplanetary mission by an Arab nation, flew within 110 km of Mars’ moon Deimos, a rocky object barely 12 km across that has had limited opportunities for scientific attention and whose origins are unknown. In this press conference, an international team of scientists will share the highest-resolution visible, infrared, and ultraviolet data of Deimos ever acquired. Moreover, they will discuss the initial findings from the mission's rendezvous and explain how studying the geology and origin of Deimos can yield valuable insights into the formation and development of Mars and its moons.


Hessa Al Matroushi
Emirates Mars Mission Science Deputy Project Manager, Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Hoor Al Mazmi
Space Science Researcher, United Arab Emirates Space Agency, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Justin Deigan
Research Scientist, Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, University of Colorado Boulder, United States

Christopher Edwards
Associate Professor, Department of Astronomy and Planetary Science, Northern Arizona University, United States

Convener: Gillian D'Souza
Mon, 24 Apr, 15:30–16:30 (CEST)
Press centre
Mon, 15:30

What are the three requirements to be met for planets to host active, communicative civilizations (ACCs) or “intelligent life”? When and where did migration corridors or barriers exist for Homo sapiens as early humans spread from Africa to Eurasia? And how did large climatic changes during the Miocene impact potential hominoid habitats? This press briefing combines fascinating theories and insights on evolution.


Taras Gerya
ETH-Zurich, Institute of Geophysics, Department of Earth Sciences, Zurich

Thomas Litt
University of Bonn, Germany

Gilles Ramstein
CEA Saclay, LSCE, Gif sur Yvette, France

Convener: Gillian D'Souza
Tue, 25 Apr, 10:00–11:00 (CEST)
Press centre
Tue, 10:00

In March 2022, the United Nations set a five year target for every place on Earth to be equipped with Early Warning Systems (EWS) for natural hazards. In this press briefing, geoscientists propose an operational earthquake forecasting model for Europe, a new framework for drought definition and preparedness, an innovative flood hazard mapping method that indicates oncoming floods, and a system to warn the livestock sector of disease outbreaks.


Marta Han
Swiss Seismological Service, ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Pedro Henrique Lima Alencar
Technische Universität Berlin, Institut für Ökologie, Ökohydrologie & Landschaftsbewertung, Germany

Fredrik Huthoff
HKV and University of Twente, Netherlands

Paola Nassisi
Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici, Lecce, Italy

Convener: Gillian D'Souza
Tue, 25 Apr, 11:30–12:30 (CEST)
Press centre
Tue, 11:30

Scientists are taking to the night to find new insights about Earth and its inhabitants. For instance, scientists can use NASA’s Black Marble night light data to assess flood exposure and vulnerability for the Indus River flood that struck Pakistan in 2022. Moonlight remote sensing lets scientists track changes in snow and ice cover in the Arctic. And in polar regions, like the seasonally ice-covered Arctic Lake Kilpisjärvi, scientists track temperature and oxygen during polar nights to illuminate biological processes operating in the absence of sunlight.


Ekta Aggarwal
Imperial College London, Department of Earth Science and Engineering, London, UK

Di Liu and Qingling Zhang
Sun Yat-Sen University, Sun Yat-Sen University, School of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Shenzhen, China

Ezgi Asirok and Georgiy Kirillin
Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries, Berlin, Germany

Convener: Gillian D'Souza
Wed, 26 Apr, 10:00–11:00 (CEST)
Press centre
Wed, 10:00

Ghana is the second largest exporter of cocoa, yet many cocoa producers live below the poverty line. Climate change is threatening water security, yet new research shows water limitation can further amplify climate change. And several factors pose a threat to the livestock and cereal sectors in the Mediterranean region, an area particularly vulnerable to climate change. Experts address these and other complexities at this press briefing.


Rene Orth
Department of Biogeochemical Integration, Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry, Jena, Germany

Sophia Carodenuto
University of Victoria, Social Sciences, Geography, Canada

Valentina Mereu
Euro-Mediterranean Center on Climate Changes (CMCC) and Department of Agriculture, University of Sassari, Italy

Convener: Gillian D'Souza
Wed, 26 Apr, 14:00–15:00 (CEST)
Press centre
Wed, 14:00

Archaeological studies piece together our relatively recent past. This press conference will explore how weather forecasting worked amidst complex sea navigation during the Middle Ages, when an early Micronesian society built the “Venice of the Pacific" at UNESCO World Heritage site Nan Madol, and what drove the divergent paths of two Roman settlements in Central Austria.


Haraldur Ólafsson
University of Iceland, Iceland

Chuan-Chou (River) Shen
High-Precision Mass Spectrometry and Environment Change Laboratory (HISPEC), National Taiwan University, Taiwan

Diana Hatzenbühler
University of Vienna, Department of Geology, Vienna, Austria

Convener: Gillian D'Souza
Thu, 27 Apr, 11:30–12:30 (CEST)
Press centre
Thu, 11:30

In this press conference, scientists will explore the consequences on marine life of warfare material dumped at sea since World War I. Nuclear tests conducted by France in Algeria during the 1960s may have resulted in radioactive Saharan dusts deposited across Europe decades later, in 2022. Looking to the future, scientists find an unlikely but promising candidate in seaweed as a resilient food solution in nuclear winter.


Edmund Maser
University Hospital Kiel, Institute of Toxicology, Germany

Olivier Evrard
CNRS-CEA, LSCE - Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement, Gif-sur-Yvette, France

Florian Ulrich Jehn
Alliance to Feed the Earth in Disasters (ALLFED), Delaware, USA and Justus-Liebig-University, Gießen, Germany

Convener: Gillian D'Souza
Thu, 27 Apr, 14:00–15:00 (CEST)
Press centre
Thu, 14:00