International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics

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International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics
Formation1919; 104 years ago (1919)
Region served
Official language
English, French
Kathryn Whaler (UK)
Chris Rizos (Australia)
Secretary General
Alexander Rudloff (Germany)
Niels Andersen (Denmark)
WebsiteIUGG official website
German stamp about the IUGG General Assembly in 1983, Hamburg

The International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics (IUGG; French: Union géodésique et géophysique internationale, UGGI) is an international non-governmental organization dedicated to the scientific study of Earth and its space environment using geophysical and geodetic techniques.

The IUGG was established in Brussels, Belgium in 1919.[1][2][3][4][5] Some areas within its scope are environmental preservation, reduction of the effects of natural hazards, and mineral resources.

The IUGG is a member of the International Science Council (ISC), which is composed of international scholarly and scientific institutions and national academies of sciences.


IUGG's objectives are the promotion and coordination of studies related to Earth's physical, chemical and mathematical representation. This includes geometrical shape, internal structure, gravity and magnetic fields, seismicity, volcanism, hydrologic cycle, glaciers, oceans, atmosphere, ionosphere, and magnetosphere of Earth. It also includes solar, lunar and planetary studies.[6]


The IUGG consists of eight semi-autonomous associations:[7]

It has also established six commissions to promote interdisciplinary problems:[8]

  • Climatic and Environmental Changes (CCEC)
  • Mathematical Geophysics (CMG)
  • Geophysical Risk and Sustainability (GRC)
  • Study of the Earth's Deep Interior (SEDI)
  • Data and Information (UCDI)
  • Planetary Sciences (UCPS)

and the Union Working Group on History.

General Assemblies, Presidents, and Secretaries General[edit]

List of General Assemblies, Presidents, and Secretaries-General.[9]

Nr. Year General Assembly in President Secretary-General
28. 2023 Berlin  Germany 2023-2027 Chris Rizos  Australia
27. 2019 Montreal  Canada 2019-2023 Kathryn Whaler  United Kingdom 2019-2023 Alexander Rudloff  Germany
26. 2015 Prague  Czech Republic 2015-2019 Michael Sideris  Canada 2015-2019 Alik Ismail-Zadeh  Germany /  Russia
25. 2011 Melbourne  Australia 2011-2015 Harsh Gupta  India 2011-2015 Alik Ismail-Zadeh  Germany /  Russia
24. 2007 Perugia  Italy 2007-2011 Tom Beer  Australia 2007-2011 Alik Ismail-Zadeh  Germany /  Russia
23. 2003 Sapporo  Japan 2003-2007 Uri Shamir  Israel 2003-2007 JoAnn Joselyn  United States
22. 1999 Birmingham  United Kingdom 1999-2003 Masaru Kono  Japan 1999-2003 JoAnn Joselyn  United States
21. 1995 Boulder  United States 1995-1999 P.J. Wyllie  United States 1995-1999 Georges Balmino  France
20. 1991 Vienna  Austria 1991-1995 H. Moritz  Austria 1991-1995 Georges Balmino  France
19. 1987 Vancouver  Canada 1987-1991 V.I. Keilis-Borok  Soviet Union 1987-1991 Baron Paul Melchior  Belgium
18. 1983 Hamburg  West Germany 1983-1987 D. Lal  India 1983-1987 Baron Paul Melchior  Belgium
17. 1979 Canberra  Australia 1979-1983 G.D. Garland  Canada 1979-1983 Baron Paul Melchior  Belgium
16. 1975 Grenoble  France 1975-1979 A. Ashour  Egypt 1973-1979 Baron Paul Melchior  Belgium
15. 1971 Moscow  Soviet Union 1971-1975 H. Charnock  United Kingdom 1973-1991 Baron Paul Melchior  Belgium
14. 1967 Zurich  Switzerland 1967-1971 J. Coulomb  France 1967-1973 G.D. Garland  Canada
13. 1963 Berkeley  United States 1963-1967 J. Kaplan  United States 1963-1967 G.D. Garland  Canada
12. 1960 Helsinki  Finland 1960-1963 V.V. Beloussov  Soviet Union 1960-1963 G.R. Laclavère  France
11. 1957 Toronto  Canada 1957-1960 J.T. Wilson  Canada 1957-1960 G.R. Laclavère  France
10. 1954 Rome  Italy 1954-1957 K.R. Ramanathan  India 1954-1957 G.R. Laclavère  France
9. 1951 Brussels  Belgium 1951-1954 S. Chapman  United Kingdom 1951-1954 G.R. Laclavère  France
8. 1948 Oslo  Norway 1948-1951 F.A. Vening Meinesz  Netherlands 1946-1951 J.M. Stagg  United Kingdom
7. 1939 Washington DC  United States 1946-1948 B. Helland-Hansen  Norway 1939-1946 H. St. J.L. Winterbotham  United Kingdom
6. 1936 Edinburgh  United Kingdom 1936-1942 D. La Cour  Denmark 1936-1939 H. St. J.L. Winterbotham  United Kingdom
5. 1933 Lisbon  Portugal 1933-1936 W. Bowie  United States 1933-1936 H. St. J.L. Winterbotham  United Kingdom
4. 1930 Stockholm  Sweden 1919-1933 C. Lallemand  France 1930-1933 H. St. J.L. Winterbotham  United Kingdom
3. 1927 Prague  Czechoslovakia 1919-1933 C. Lallemand  France 1927-1930 Sir Henry Lyons  United Kingdom
2. 1924 Madrid  Spain 1919-1933 C. Lallemand  France 1924-1927 Sir Henry Lyons  United Kingdom
1. 1922 Rome  Italy 1919-1933 C. Lallemand  France 1919-1924 Sir Henry Lyons  United Kingdom

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Lyons, Henry G. (1919). "The Brussels Meeting of the International Research Council". Nature. 103 (2598): 464–466.
  2. ^ Cochrane, Rexmond C. (1978). The National Academy of Sciences: The First Hundred Years, 1863-1963. National Academies.
  3. ^ Good, Gregory A. (2000). "The Assembly of Geophysics: Scientific Disciplines as Frameworks of Consensus". Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics. 31 (3): 259–292. Bibcode:2000SHPMP..31..259G. doi:10.1016/S1355-2198(00)00018-6.
  4. ^ Ismail-Zadeh, Alik (2016). "Geoscience international: the role of scientific unions". History of Geo- and Space Sciences. 7: 103–123.
  5. ^ Ismail-Zadeh, Alik; Joselyn, JoAnn (Eds.) (2019). "The International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics: from different spheres to a common globe". History of Geo- and Space Sciences. 10: 17–191.
  6. ^ Burchfiel, B. C. (1987) International Role of U.S. Geoscience US National Academies page 32
  7. ^ "Associations of the IUGG". International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics. Retrieved 2 May 2014.
  8. ^ "Union Commissions". International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics. Retrieved 2 May 2014.
  9. ^ IUGG - Bureau of the Union. Retrieved 01/07/2015.

External links[edit]