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2023 GSA Sessions Endorsed by Paleo Society

There are 26 Topical & more-to-come Discipline Sessions at GSA Connects 2023 that are endorsed by the Paleo Society! 


T4. Deep-Time Empowered Sustainability, Energy Transition, and Carbon Solutions.

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Book Review: Nature Through Time

Reviewed by Bruce Rothschild (Indiana University Health, formerly Carnegie Museum of Natural History)

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Book Review: Life Through the Ages

Reviewed by Phil Novack-Gottshall (Benedictine University, Lisle, IL)

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Book Review: When Humans Nearly Vanished

Reviewed by Andrej Spiridonov (Vilnius University, Lithuania & Nature Research Centre, Lithuania)

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Books available for review

Books available for review announcement

The following volumes are available to Paleontological Society members in exchange for writing a review in Priscum. Reviews should be informative, engaging, and 400–800 words long. The tone can be informal and casual, appropriate to recommending a book to colleagues. Reviews are expected to be returned within six months after receipt. Past book reviews can be found in past issues of Priscum at and must be a current member of the Paleontological Society before beginning review. If you are interested in reviewing one of these texts, please contact Book Reviews Editor Phil Novack-Gottshall.


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Book Review: Animal Movement

Reviewed by Ephraim Nissan (London, England)

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Book Review: Vertebrate Skeletal Histology and Paleohistology

Reviewed by James Farlow (Purdue University Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne, IN)

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Book Review: Trilobites of the British Isles

Reviewed by Phil Novack-Gottshall (Benedictine University, Lisle, IL)

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DEEP Award

The Paleontological Society is now soliciting for nominations for the inaugural DEEP Award!  

The Diversity Engagement and Enhancement in Paleontology (DEEP) Award is presented to early career professionals and students who have enhanced the global paleontology community by advancing diversity, equity and inclusion in the field. The awards will be presented during the annual Geological Society of America conference. 
The deadline to nominate for the DEEP awards is February 12, 2023. 

Award Criteria:
Early career professionals as well as undergraduate and graduate students are eligible. Individuals are eligible regardless of their status as Paleontological Society members. Nominees eligible for the award will include: currently enrolled undergraduate and graduate students; students in gap years between 2-year and 4-year degrees or between undergraduate and graduate school; postdoctoral scholars; those currently employed as paleontologists in academia, industry, government, or a museum and have received their terminal degree 5 years or fewer before the nomination.
Nomination Procedures:
Nominations can be submitted by a second party or can be self-nominated. To keep the selection process fair for everyone, only one letter of support is accepted per nominee. Contact information for the nominator and letter of support should be included. 
Please use this form to submit your nomination:
For those who are self-nominating:  Please provide your letter of nomination and one email to contact for one letter of support. 
For those who are nominating someone else:  Please only provide your letter of nomination. You will not need to provide a letter of support. 
The letter of nomination and letter of support should be no more than two (2) pages single-spaced, and address how the nominee has excelled in one or more of the following pursuits:
  • Leadership in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Innovation in the design and implementation of programs or other initiatives dedicated to enhancing diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • Recruitment and retention such as via recruitment events, mentoring, funding or program implementation.
  • Any additional relevant factors to further describe the impact of the nominee’s efforts to promote a diverse and welcoming environment in the paleontological sciences. 
If you have any questions or comments, please contact Jood Al Aswad.
The DEEP Award Committee of the Paleontological Society

PS Student Rep Applications

The Paleontological Society is soliciting applications for a Student Representative to Council. 

Eligibility: We encourage applications from paleontology graduate students who are early-mid stage in their graduate programs from all backgrounds and institutions, particularly those that have historically been under-represented on the Paleontological Society Council.

The Role: Student Representatives serve as voices for student needs in the Society and play leading roles in student activities including organizing student events at the annual Geological Society of America conference. Student Representatives are further encouraged to develop and lead new student initiatives. In this role, students gain knowledge of the inner workings of an international organization and experience in professional service.

The selected Student Representative (who will start their role in the fall of 2023) will join current Student Representative Sam Ocon and serve a two-year term (Fall 2023–Fall 2025). Student Representatives attend two virtual Council meetings per year (one during fall and the other during spring).

Application Requirements:

Please fill out the google form and provide each question with long-answer responses (at least one paragraph per question) to be considered for this position.

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Book Review: Penguins: The Ultimate Guide

Reviewed by Ephraim Nissan (London, England)

De Roy, T., M. Jones, and J. Cornthwaite, eds. 2022. Penguins: The Ultimate Guide. Second edition. Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ, 240 pp. ($28.00 cloth, $19.60 e-book with 20% PS discount.)

This lavishly illustrated, large-format book provides a full-rounded treatment of all extant penguin species, but it also is an eye-opener on fossil and subfossil penguin species. Part 1 is by Tui de Roy, and covers their life cycle, the “jackass” group of braying penguins, Antarctica’s three long-tailed species (the Adélie, chinstrap, and Gentoo penguins), the crested penguins, the rockhoppers, the Little penguin of Oceania, and finally the King and Emperor penguins of Antarctica.

Julie Cornthwaite authored Part 3, surveying all species one by one, in profiles sharing their structure. Part 2 instead, “Science and Conservation”, is edited by Mark Jones, and comprises 17 chapters (all but the first, of just two pages) by different scholars. For example, “March of the Fossil Penguins” by Daniel Ksepka (pp. 158–159), and Matthew Shawkey’s “Penguin Colours and Pigments” (pp. 162–163), which also discusses their evolution (a glitch chopped off its last line): “melanosomes from [the 36-million-year-old] Inkayacu [giant penguin found mummified (p. 159)] were smaller than those from modern penguins, and more similar in size and shape to those of other birds” (p. 162): perhaps larger melanosomes make feathers stiffer. “Second, Inkayacu’s plumage lacked countershading. Instead it had a brown underside and grey back” (162). Seals were diversifying, and countershading may have evolved as a response to increasing predation pressure.

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Book Review: Dragons’ Teeth and Thunderstones: The Quest for the Meaning of Fossils

Reviewed by Andrej Spiridonov (Vilnius University, Lithuania & Nature Research Centre, Lithuania)

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2022 Paleontological Society Fellows

We are delighted to announce the newest Paleontological Society Fellows:  Annalisa Berta (San Diego State University), Carlos Jaramillo (Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute), Johnny Waters (University of West Georgia and Appalachian State University), and Lisa White (UC Museum of Paleontology). 

Annalisa Berta (San Diego State University) is recognized for her numerous wide-ranging and impactful contributions to our understanding of marine mammals, including their anatomy, physiology, ontogeny, sensory biology, phylogenetics, and evolutionary history; for her outstanding record of teaching and mentorship; and for her extensive service to the profession, including her pioneering efforts promoting the work of women in paleontology most notably through her book Rebels, Scholars, Explorers: Women in Vertebrate Paleontology.

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2022 GSA Sessions Endorsed by Paleo Society

There are 20+ Topical & 8 Discipline Sessions at GSA Connects 2022 that are endorsed by the Paleo Society! 

T102. Comings and Goings of Proterozoic Global Glaciations - (Posters Sunday a.m.)
Leaders: Bing Shen; Maoyan Zhu; and Xianguo Lang
Endorsers: Geochemical Society; GSA Geobiology and Geomicrobiology Division; Paleontological Society
Description: This session focuses on global glaciations and geology-geobiology in the Proterozoic.

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PS 2022 Short Course on Ecological Niche Modeling

Ecological Models Applied to Fossil Data

When: Saturday, October 8th from 8am to 5pm.
Where: Denver, CO Convention Center 
Who:  Everyone interested in learning about how to use and understand niche modeling methods for paleontological datasets. 
Registration: Not required, Free to everyone!
Instructors: Cori Myers, Alycia Stigall, Erin Saupe, Marlon Cobos, Jenny McGuire, Hannah Owens

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Through a glass darkly: citation rankings in paleontology

- Roy E. Plotnick, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago.

In the old days, before the advent of the internet and the personal computer, you kept up on the scientific literature by going to the library and examining the stacks of new journals that had just arrived. If you wanted to pursue an area of research and write your own paper, you searched the library stacks, guided by the list of references in the back of published papers and the huge published volumes, such as the Bibliography and Index of Geology, that catalogued the papers on the subject. You may also find out, perhaps guided by more senior scientists, that there were certain critical papers in your area that you needed to read. 

All this, of course, has changed. You can receive emails from journals announcing newly published, or about to be published papers. The development of massive online reference databases, such as Web of Science, GeoRef, and Google Scholar have made searching for papers on a topic lightning fast, with the ability to immediately download the publication and enter it into a personal bibliographic database. And most usefully, the databases have links to both the papers in the paper’s reference list and those that, in turn, cite the publication in question, with each papers number of citations being tabulated. To a first approximation, one can assume that the more citations a paper has, the more important it is to read. 

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PS Journals Editorial Intern Positions

The Paleontological Society Journals are seeking two Editorial Interns to attend the 2022 Geological Society of America Annual Meeting and assist our editorial boards in recruiting new paper submissions. Interns will get an inside look at academic publishing and assist Journal of Paleontology and Paleobiology in diversifying our content and our authorship. Each intern will receive a $2000 stipend to cover the costs of attending the 2022 GSA Annual Meeting. 

Program Description
Prior to the GSA meeting, and with guidance from the editorial boards for Paleobiology and Journal of Paleontology, interns will scan abstracts for presentations that fit within the scope of the two journals, have the potential to be high impact, and are written by students and early career scientists. Interns will then attend presentations and write up short summaries of promising submissions for each editorial board. Journal editors can then contact presenters and encourage them to submit to the appropriate journal.

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Punctuated Equilibrium Survey

The year 2022 marks the 50th anniversary of the landmark 1972 paper by Niles Eldredge and Stephen J. Gould that introduced the concept of punctuated equilibrium to the fields of paleontology and evolutionary biology.

In honor of this anniversary, I am conducting a survey-based study to better understand how people define the concept of punctuated equilibrium and to what extent they use it in their research and teaching.

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Future Leaders in Paleontology at GSA Connects 2022

The Paleontological Society is pleased to announce the fourth annual “Future Leaders in Paleontology” topical session at the 2022 GSA Annual Meeting. The goal of the session is to showcase the outstanding work of our student members in a high-profile setting. The Society will limit the number of paleontological sessions running concurrently with this special session, in order to have a prominent platform for our student members.

The Society invites all of its student members and recent graduates receiving a degree within the last year, particularly those nearing completion of their projects, to submit an abstract to GSA and fill out this Google Form. The session will bring together all types of paleontological research, spanning the full range of taxonomic groups, methods, and disciplines within our field. While advisors and other study participants are permitted to be co-authors on the presentation, the work must primarily reflect intellectual contributions of the student submitting the abstract.

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PS is proud to support the Tröger Memorial Inoceramid Workshop

The Karl-Armin Tröger Memorial Inoceramid Workshop (supported in part by the Paleontological Society) will be held this year in Warsaw, Poland during the 11th International Cretaceous Symposium (August 22-26, 2022). Inoceramids are an extinct family of marine pteriomorph bivalves which ranged from the Early Jurassic to the Late Cretaceous. While inoceramid bivalves are a powerful and increasingly used tool in Cretaceous biostratigraphy and paleoecology, their underlying systematic hierarchy, phylogenies and macroevolutionary trends have proven difficult to define and standardize.  

In this framework, we cordially invite you to participate in the Karl-Armin Tröger Memorial Inoceramid Workshop. We welcome contributions related to all topics related to inoceramids, including taxonomy and systematics, biostratigraphy, paleoecology, paleobiology and functional morphology, taphonomy, geochemistry, macroevolutionary dynamics, and the history of inoceramid studies – essentially, if it’s related to inoceramids, we’d love to see you here! During the workshop, we intend to prepare a comprehensive review of inoceramid paleontology for the wider paleobiological community.
Karl-Armin Tröger (1931-2020) was one of the great luminaries of Cretaceous geology, especially with regards to the Inoceramidae: his work set the foundation for much of our present understanding of inoceramid taxonomy, diversity, biostratigraphy, and paleobiogeography. As such, we find it only fitting that this workshop be devoted to his memory.
For more information, visit the Cretaceous Symposium website ( or contact the workshop organizers, Jordan Todes and Irenuesz Walaszcvzyk. Additional information, including registration and abstract details, will be provided on the symposium website in the near future.