EAG President Bernard Marty says goodbye

Two years have already passed since I became EAG president at the beginning of 2017, and I am about to pass on the EAG baton to our next president, Sigurður (Siggi) Gislason. The past president, Liane Benning has been central in developing EAG publications. Since its launch in 2012, Geochemical Perspectives has achieved a remarkable 5-year impact factor of 9.7, and Geochemical Perspectives Letters (GPL), launched three years ago, is already a highly praised letters journal and has just been accepted for inclusion in the Science Citation Index Expanded (SCIE – aka Web of Science). The first impact factor for GPL will be available in June 2019.


Both of our publications were created by geochemists, for geochemists, and are produced in-house without any involvement from commercial publishers. One of our most important goals as a society is to make knowledge available to anyone, anywhere in the world, and GP and GPL are both fully open access. The two publications are mostly funded from the surplus made at Goldschmidt conferences, as well as from voluntary contributions to GPL made by authors on acceptance of an article for publication, and we also welcome kind donations from our readers and members which help to keep the boat afloat.


A highlight of any president’s term is of course the Goldschmidt conference, which is organised by the EAG every two years. The European Goldschmidt held in Paris in August 2017 was the highest attended to date, with 4,500 delegates from 85 countries around the world participating. I was particularly moved by the plenary talk given by Hélène Langevin-Joliot, the grand-daughter of Pierre and Marie Curie, in which she introduced us to the day-to-day exercise of geochemistry at its highest level in the early 20th century. Goldschmidt conferences are at the core of the society’s activities and involve several years of planning. Organising a conference is a challenging but very exciting task. The preparations for the next conference to be held in the magnificent city of Barcelona in August 2019 are already well underway and I am very much looking forward to attending the event.


Geochemistry is blossoming in other countries and continents, and the EAG is committed to supporting this growth through its free-to-access publications and the ongoing development of its outreach programs in Europe and Africa. Every year, our distinguished lecturers travel to under-represented regions of the world to bring scientific advances to local students and researchers. We are equally dedicated to supporting early career scientists and several initiatives have been developed over the past few years to enhance the training opportunities for junior scientists. The EAG also continues to post job advertisements and conference listings free of charge on the website.


Behind the scenes, the day-to-day running of the EAG office is assured by the Chief Operations Officer, Marie-Aude Hulshoff, who was recently joined by Editorial and Administrative Assistant, Alice Williams. I would like to extend my sincere thanks to both Marie-Aude and Alice for their dedication and all their hard work to keep the engine running smoothly and efficiently. I would also like to express my gratitude to Estelle Rose-Koga, who is succeeding Karim Benzerara as treasurer – not always the most desirable position on the council! The EAG is a vibrant society that relies on the tireless efforts of the volunteers serving on the council and various committees, who are willing to spare some of their precious time for the benefit of the whole community.


As president of a society like the EAG, you realise that things can only happen through the participation of so many people all working together to build a thriving community and to promote excellence in science. It has been an absolute pleasure to serve as head of the EAG family, and I have no doubt that Siggi—with his enthusiasm and humour and the fresh air he will bring in from 66 degrees north—will be a great president!


About the author: Bernard Marty is a Professor of geochemistry at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Géologie, Université de Lorraine, and researcher at the Centre de Recherches Pétrographiques et Géochimiques (CRPG, UMR 7358 CNRS-UL), Nancy, France. He is interested in the geochemistry and cosmochemistry of volatile elements, notably stable isotopes and noble gases. Topics include stable isotope variations in the solar system, processes of planet formation, the origin(s) of terrestrial water and other volatiles, the geodynamical cycle of these elements, and the evolution of the atmosphere from the Hadean eon to Present. Besides mantle geochemistry, Bernard is involved in space missions such as Stardust (return to Earth of cometary grains), Genesis (analysis of the isotope composition of the solar wind), Rosetta (in situ analysis of cometary volatiles), and others.