International Palaeontological Association

IPA logo Ordinary meeting of the general assembly


President: Zhonghe Zhou (China)                                                     Vice-Presidents: Lucia Angiolini (Italy)

Secretary-General: Lars Holmer (Sweden)                                              James Crampton, (New Zealand)

Treasurer: Ronald Parsley (USA)                                                                             Hiroshi Kitazato (Japan)

Councillor-at-Large: Peter Doyle (UK)                                                                Thomas Servais (Belgium)

Councillor-at-Large: Olga Kossovaya (Russia)                                                 Beatriz Waisfeld (Argentina)


All participants in the 2018 International Palaeontological Congress (IPC5), and members of the International Palaeontological Association in particular, are invited to attend the General Assembly of the IPA on July 11th at 5:00 p.m. in Amphitheatre 44 (Pierre and Marie Curie Campus of Sorbonne University).

The quadrennial General Assembly is the regular, formal business meeting of the International Palaeontological Association, at which its officers are elected. The business to be undertaken does not require much time. However, the meeting provides a unique opportunity for palaeontologists to discuss issues and initiatives of international concern to our profession.  Please plan to attend this meeting and bring your ideas for advancement of the IPA and of the science of palaeontology.



I. Approval of Minutes of the previous General Assembly, held in 2014
II. Reports of Officers of the International Palaeontological Association
           A. Report of the President
           B. Report of the Secretary-General
           C. Report of the Treasurer
III. Report on the PaleoParks and International Fossil Day projects
IV. Election of Officers: Report of the Nominating Committee
V. Call for proposals, to be submitted to the Council of the International Palaeontological Association by 1st March, 2019 to host IPC 6 in 2022.
VI. Proposed changes to the IPA constitution “ARTICLE X. DOMICILE”
VII. Other business






The International Palaeontological Association (IPA) aims to promote and coordinate international cooperation in palaeontology and to encourage the integration and synthesis of all palaeontological knowledge. A detailed mission statement is published on the IPA web site at <>, which is kindly hosted free of charge by the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Paleontology <>.

Corporate Membership is open to national, regional, and disciplinary paleontological societies and sections of societies; as well as to other scientific societies, agencies, institutions, organizations, working groups, and informal associations that support the aims of IPA. Corporate Members pay annual dues to IPA. Organizations interested in palaeontology and in supporting the aims of IPA are encouraged to contact the IPA Treasurer to become Corporate Members. There are two classes of individual membership: Subscribing Members are those who subscribe to Lethaia, an international journal affiliated with IPA. A portion of the subscription covers their dues. Ordinary Members pay dues directly to IPA.

The most recently revised Constitution was approved by the General Assembly of IPA at its meeting of June 20, 2006, in Beijing. The Constitution is published on the IPA web site at <>.

Officers 2014-2018
The Executive Committee officers of IPA for the 2014-2018 term are as follows:
PRESIDENT Dr. Zhonghe Zhou (China)
SECRETARY-GENERAL Dr. Lars Holmer (Sweden)
TREASURER Dr. Ronald Parsley (USA)

Dr. Lucia Angiolini (Italy)
Dr. James Crampton, (New Zealand),
Dr. Hiroshi Kitazato (Japan)
Dr. Thomas Servais (Belgium)
Dr. Beatriz Waisfeld (Argentina)

Dr. Peter Doyle (United Kingdom, Editor of Lethaia)
Dr. Olga Kossovaya (Russia)

The President, Secretary-General and Treasurer constitute the Executive
Committee that conducts the day-to-day business of the IPA.

Council of IPA
In addition to the Executive Committee and other Officers, the Constitution provides that the Council shall include delegates representing the Corporate Members and the journal Lethaia, delegates charged with to carry out specific tasks on behalf of IPA, the Past-President and the Past-Secretary-General. Current Corporate Members and all delegates now serving on the Council are listed in the Appendix to this report.

Business Meetings
The most recent IPA Council Business Meeting was held May 15-17, 2016, at the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology (IVPP), Beijing, China. Minutes of that meeting are attached to this report. This was the first business meeting of the IPA Council to be held between the quadrennial congresses since these were initiated in 2002 (following a decision taken during the IPA Council Meeting at the IPC4 in Argentina). The meeting in Beijing was kindly sponsored by the IVPP with support from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Ministry of Science and Technology of the People´s Republic of China.
The most recent Ordinary Meeting of the IPA General Assembly was held during the Fourth International Palaeontological Congress, in Mendoza, Argentina, September 30, 2014.

Selection of Site for the Fifth International Palaeontological Congress, IPC 5
During late 2014, proposals were solicited from potential hosts of the next International Palaeontological Congress, to be held in 2018. By early, 2015, expressions of interest had been received from two groups, the French Centre of Research on Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments (CR2P) in Paris and the Palaeontological Society of Japan in Yokohama.

These proposals were circulated to all members of the Council of IPA. Members of the Council reviewed the proposals and submitted questions and/or requests for responses to various comments from the potential organizing committees.
These requests for additional information were compiled and sent to the two groups. This new information was circulated to the Council, together with a ballot by means of which one or other of the proposals was to be accepted.
On March 26th, 2015, the Secretary-General announced that the Council of the International Palaeontological Association had decided to issue an invitation to the group in Paris, France, led by Dr. Sylvie Crasquin, Dr. Angelina Bastos, and
Dr. Stephane Peigne, to convene the Fifth International Palaeontological Congress in Paris, France, in 2018.
This decision represented a broad near-consensus. Nineteen delegates, many of whom consulted with the leadership groups of their organizations, voted to accept the proposal from France. Five delegates voted to accept the proposal
from Yokohama, Japan, and two delegates abstained from voting. A message of thanks and congratulations was sent to the group in France. Regrets were conveyed to the group in Japan. Members of the Council noted that the proposal from the group in Japan also would have been an excellent venue and many noted that it was difficult to choose between the two proposals.
The Council of the International Palaeontological Association clearly strongly encourages the group in Japan to submit a proposal to convene IPC 6.

Planning and Development of IPC 5 in Paris, France
Planning for the International Palaeontological Congress in 2018 has been during 2016-2017 undertaken entirely by the organizing committee in France, with encouragement and but limited amount of financial support from the International Palaeontological Association.
Early in 2017, Dr. Sylvie Crasquin distributed the first circular of the 5th International Palaeontological Congress, IPC 2018, indicating that it would be held July 9th-13th in Paris. Since then, the international palaeontological community has been kept well informed by a succession of circulars that have been widely distributed electronically, and by an attractive, very informative website at <>. The organizing committee has worked hard and effectively to attract support from sponsors for IPC 5. These include:

International Palaeontological Association
CR2P : Centre de Recherche en Paléontologie - Paris
Sorbonne Université
Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle
Fondation L’Oréal
The Palaeontological Association
Paleontological Society
OSU Ecce Terra
Les amis du Muséum
International Palaeontological association
IRGO: International Research Group on Ostracods
Société Géologique de France
Société Géologique de France ; Stratigraphy section
APF : Association paléontologique Française
Fondation Université Pierre et Marie Curie
GFC : Groupe français du Crétacé
GFEJ : Groupe français d’étude du Jurassique

Several of the following sponsoring organizations have made significant commitments of financial support to subsidize participation in IPC 5 by students and early stage researchers:

RAUSCH Lea Romania
RINKEVIČIŪTĖ Simona Lithuania

IPC5/L'Oréal Fondation :
DHILMAN Harsha India

IPA : Jimenez-Lara Kevin

AHOUNTA Djimdoumalbayle Tchad
HEREDIA Arturo Miguel Argentina
LADEIRA OSES Gabriel Brasil

Viglino Mariana Argentina
Zverkov Nikolay Russia


ZACAI Axelle


GFC Polette

IPA and Lethaia
Lethaia is an international journal of palaeontology and stratigraphy, published by Wiley Blackwell, with oversight from the Lethaia Foundation <> (Dr. Hans-Arne Nakrem, Chairman). The current editors of Lethaia are Peter
Doyle (Editor-in-Chief), David A.T. Harper, Alan Owen and Brooks B. Britt.
Members of IPA are eligible to purchase online and print subscriptions to Lethaia at discounted rates. Subscription at the IPA members’ rate includes the annual IPA membership fee (US$5.00). This is explained on the inside cover of the journal and on the Wiley Blackwell website <>.

The IPA and Lethaia have enjoyed a long and fruitful relationship. Members of IPA were influential in founding Lethaia in 1968 as an international journal of broad scope in palaeontology and stratigraphy, at a time when nearly all other journals were tied to national organizations or specialized scientific interests. In 1970, IPA formally adopted Lethaia as its official journal and authorized the publisher to collect IPA dues from individual subscribers. The IPA encourages all palaeontologists to support Lethaia and IPA by subscribing and by submitting high-quality palaeontological manuscripts to the journal.

The IPA Website
The new IPA web site at <>, was formally released on 1st July, 2016 and it features general information about the association, its officers, constitution and by-laws, a link to the publisher of Lethaia and Fossils and
Strata, information on palaeontological symposia, and several databases. The IPA web site is kindly hosted free of charge by the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Paleontology <> and the officers of  IPA are grateful to the IPA Web Manager Dr Yongdong Wang for the development and efficient maintenance of this valuable resource.
The website also maintains links to PaleoPortal, the Paleobiology Database, and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF).

The IPA logo and its Use
The IPA logo is available in two forms as high-resolution image files that are suitable for use on banners and in other printed materials. Corporate Members or other organizations wishing to obtain copies of these files for use in promotion
of IPA-sponsored activities or publications should contact the Secretary-General.
Selection of Nominees for Election to Serve as Officers of IPA, 2014-2018.

The report of the Nominating Committee and the slate of candidates for election as 2014-2018 officers of IPA to be put before the General Assembly in Paris is below.

Lars E. Holmer, Secretary-General 8th May, 2018



In January, 2018, Zhonghe Zhou, acting in his capacity as President of the IPA, appointed a Nominating Committee to solicit and review potential nominees to stand for election at the Ordinary Meeting of the General Assembly in Paris, France, to serve as IPA’s officers for 2018-2022.
Members of the Nominating Committee were: Michael Benton (United Kingdom), James Crampton (New Zealand), Jiayu Rong (China), Roger Thomas (USA) and Béatriz Waisfeld (Argentina).

The committee was chaired by Michael Benton and convened by Roger Thomas, acting on behalf of the Secretary-General.
Officers, delegates of corporate members, and individual members at large of IPA were invited to submit names of potential nominees. Several rounds of discussion and balloting were conducted electronically by the committee. Invitations were
sent to candidates selected by the committee and their willingness/availability to serve was ascertained. By the third week of April, 2018, the Nominating Committee had completed its work. The candidates who have been nominated for election as officers of IPA for the 2014-2018 term are as follows:

PRESIDENT Dr. Sylvie Crasquin (France)
SECRETARY-GENERAL Dr. Renbin Zhan (China)
TREASURER Dr. Danita Brandt (USA)
    Dr. James Crampton (New Zealand)
    Dr. Khadija El Hariri (Morocco)
    Dr. Tatsuo Oji (Japan)
    Dr. Roger Thomas (USA/UK)
    Dr. Beatriz Waisfeld (Argentina)
   Dr. Anusuya Chinsamy-Turan (South Africa)
   Dr. Peter Doyle (United Kingdom, Editor of Lethaia)

The Constitution of the International Palaeontological Association specifies that additional nominations may be submitted to the Secretary-General, prior to the General Assembly, provided that such nominations are supported by at least five other Members, are made in writing, and are received by the Secretary-General before the opening of the 2018 meeting of the General Assembly in Paris.
R. D. K. Thomas, Past Secretary-General 27th April, 2018


Fifth International Palaeontological Congress, IPC 5

Proposed changes to the IPA constitution “ARTICLE X. DOMICILE”
Since it is practical that the funds of the IPA continue to be managed in the country where the Treasurer conducts his or her business, the following change to the IPA constitution is proposed (from the last business IPA meeting in Beijing, 2016).


Change from
“The legal domicile of IPA shall be the place where the Secretary-General conducts his or her business”

“The legal domicile of IPA shall be the place where the Treasurer conducts his or her business”



Report of the Outgoing Treasurer – June 6, 2018



      In the four years that I have been treasurer there has been little spending activity. (One check for support for student attendance for the Paris meeting).  Income growth has been slow but somewhat steady.  However, the financial mechanics of the IPA has undergone considerable change.  We still have a ca. 50K CD with T. Rowe Price.  It is still in the former treasurer’s name. It pays little interest but it is secure. 

     In the past, the Lethaia Foundation has sent yearly support but during my tenure we have not had any financial support from them.  I have sent several inquiries but to no avail.  All support now comes from corporate memberships.


      The transfer of the PayPal account from the former treasurer to me was a near disaster (See Mid-Term Report -2016).  We did manage to transfer funds into the new IPA account with Bank of America but to keep it as an ongoing account in my name went nowhere. I encountered a computer nightmare where I kept repeating information -- bring sent back to “square one” many times -- direct telephone discussions with PayPal went nowhere. So, with no real progress I dropped PayPal. To replace it, I instituted a Visa credit card account that has worked well


    As indicated in the Mid-Term Report – 2016, I put membership payments onto an annual basis. Billing goes out in January and early February.  His has made pay terms clearer, especially for treasurers of corporate members, and made it easier for all of us to keep our books straight.


    Despite the annual billing in January over the past two years, plus sending out many additional “bills” to see if I could stimulate interest and support from other institutions there has been little support in terms of actual payments (see attachments 1 and 2) from the paleontological institutions of the world.  I have answered numerous enquiries about billing amounts but that is as far as it goes.

    During my tenure the following organizations have sent membership dues to the IPA (not listed in any particular order):

                                 Paleontological Society of Brazil

                                 Paleontological Society of Washington/ Dept. of Paleobiology, Smithsonian Inst.

                                 Micropaleontologists  Society

                                 Palaeontological Association

                                 Royal Society of New Zealand

                                 Polish Section of Paleontologists

                                 Paleontological Society of Spain

                                 Australasian Palaeontologists

                                 Paläontologishche Gesellschaft

                                 Paleontological Society.

                                 Paleontological Society of India


Current balance in our Bank of America Account (as of 31 May 2018) is……………… $9,068.49.


    -Expenses during the last four years are: $1600 for student support for attendance at the Paris IPA meeting,

    -  monthly service fees on the account and

    -   wire transfer/currency exchange fees.




  Comment:    To me this is not an impressive support picture either in income or expenditures.  Outside of the, every four-year IPA Conference, the IPA does not seem to have a “footprint”.   There seems to be a gap between what we should be doing and what in fact we actually do.  People ask me what the IPA does?  I am hard put to give an answer; I cannot give them an up to date functioning website so they can at least be aware of an organizational presence.

                   The IPA, in my opinion, should be involved with global paleontological problems -- protection of important fossil localities; protection of type specimens, trafficking in type and key material; global dissemination in what paleontology is—what we do. There are many more problems that can be added to this list.    I am shocked at the scientific quality of specimens that show up in our local rock shop here in the mountains of North Carolina.  I wonder “did some sort of scientific entity have an opportunity to bid on or purchase this or comparable specimens”?   I do not propose a “fossil police system” but we do need some sort of intelligence system where the scientific world can attempt to keep tabs on what is being exploited and try to “rescue” specimens of scientific importance.  Some movement in this direction, in my opinion, is desirable and necessary. 

                   If we do not move to become a more dynamic organization I think we will continue to have this pitiful support from the worlds paleontological institutions.  Organizations need to see that their support for the IPA counts for something. 


            Respectfully submitted,


            Respectfully submitted,

  TREASURER – IPA                                                        
Ronald L Parsley, Prof. Emeritus                                           

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