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Annual Meeting 2023 - Cambridge, UK: Symposium – Ecosystem Engineering through Deep Time

Number: 67th Annual Meeting
Year: 2023
Location: Cambridge, UK
Hosted By: University of Cambridge
Organised By: Organising committee chaired by Dr Alex Liu
General Contact Email:

Symposium – Ecosystem Engineering through Deep Time

The 2023 Symposium will be held on the afternoon of Tuesday 12th September, addressing the topic Ecosystem Engineering through Deep Time.  As in previous years, the programme will include a series of invited state-of-the-art lectures, but the schedule will be modified to attract a broader range of current research and researchers.  The new format will include space for up to six volunteered oral presentations, focusing on how particular groups, habits or evolutionary innovations have (re-)defined physical environments through time.  

Invited speakers

The four invited lecturers speaking in the 2023 Symposium are:

  • Professor Kevin Lala (University of St Andrews, U.K.)
    Understanding niche construction as a cause of natural selection
  • Professor Graham Shields (UCL, U.K.)
    Biogeochemical interactions between life and the environment during the Ediacaran Period
  • Professor Gabriela Mángano (University of Saskatchewan, Canada)
    The deep-time record of bioturbators as ecosystem engineers
  • Professor Christopher Doughty (Northern Arizona University, USA)
    Body size evolution as a driver of Phanerozoic nutrient availability

How to contribute in the Symposium

We encourage anyone with research interests in ecosystem engineering to consider contributing to the proceedings.  In addition to a place in the Symposium, successful applicants will be awarded a fee waiver for the PalAss Annual Meeting, a ticket to the Annual Dinner, and a (distance scaled) contribution to travel expenses.  All Symposium contributors will be expected to publish their contribution as a paper in a theme issue of Palaeontology (strict manuscript deadline 31st December 2023). Please do not apply to participate in the Symposium if you and your co-authors do not think you will be able to meet this manuscript deadline.

Applications for a place in the Symposium will be made via the standard abstract submission system for the Annual Meeting (via a ‘Symposium’ tick-box option), and will be subject to the same submission deadline (9th June 2023).  The local organising committee will select the final list of contributions using criteria agreed by the PalAss Council.  Unsuccessful submissions will be automatically considered for regular sessions within the Annual Meeting unless otherwise requested during registration.  Contributions that are unsuccessful in being selected for the Symposium will still be eligible for inclusion within the thematic volume.

Please contact Nick Butterfield (njb1005[at] if you have any specific questions relating to the Symposium or the theme issue of Palaeontology.

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