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《Journal of Stratigraphy》 2003-01
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NEW CHALLENGE AND NEW MISSION FOR THE ICS

RONG Jia-yu (Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing, 210008)  
The special planning meeting of the International Commission on Stratigraphy (ICS) was held in Urbino, Italy on 14—16, June, 2002. This meeting has focused on “Future Directions in Stratigraphy” and has been successful. The ICS is in an important scientific phase, facing two challenges. The International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS)has strongly urged the ICS to have the Global Stratotype Section and Point (GSSP) for all Phanerozoic stages in place by the year 2008. After 2008, there will be no funding for work on GSSPs. At the moment, the question before the ICS is not only can the ICS complete this primary mission but also what is the task of the ICS after all GSSPs are in place. New challenge and new mission of ICS were discussed by the chairs of various subcommisions of the ICS in the Urbino meeting. The primary goal of the Urbino meeting is to achieve a degree of consensus among the chairs of the subcommission on the future direction and organizational structure of the ICS. The detailed 2001 Annual Report of each subcommission, plus an updated status of GSSPs for each period are posted on the ICS website (www.stratigraphy.org). The selected highlights of the subcommission reports are given in this paper. They include Cambrian (by John Shergold), Ordovician (by Stan Finny), Silurian (by Rong Jia-yu), Devonian (by Pierre Bultynck), Carboniferous (by Richard Lane with contribution by Phil Heckel), Permian (by Bruce Wardlaw), Jurassic (by Nicol Morton), Cretaceous (by Peter Rawson), Paleogene (by Hans-Peter Luterbacher), Neogene (by Domenico Rio, reading summary submitted by Neogene Subcommission), and Quaternary stratigraphic subdivisions (by Philip Gibbard). Andrew Knoll (Chaiman of the Terminal Proterozoic), Phil Heckel (Chairman of the Carboniferous Subcommission), and Michael Orchard (Chairman of the Triassic Subcommission) could not attend this meeting, but the 2001 annual reports of these three subcommissions have been known. Summary of the ICS Standards-International Stratigraphic Chart and GSSPs was given by James Ogg, Secretary General of ICS. The future directions of the ICS include new mission and goals. The Commission is the primary body for facilitation of international communication and scientific cooperation in stratigraphy, defined in the broad sence of multidisciplinary activities directed towards better understanding of Earth history. The ICS needs to excite the next generation with new tools, high-resolution event correlation on a global scale, and other projects with relevance to public concerns and imagination. The ICS are developing a common lan-guage, then achieve global understanding of Earth history. The ICS is responsible for standardization of stratigraphic concepts and the continued improvement of resolution of the International Geological Time Scale. Stratigraphy has evolving methods that will require new standards and provide progressively more depth in regional to global correlation. The chronostratigraphy time scale does not stop with just stage-level GSSPs. The ICS will provide international networks for thematic studies that require precise stratigraphic correlation (such as paleoclimate, tectonics, glacial episodes, eustatic sea-level). There is a CHRONOS-Earth History Database Concept under scientific auspices of ICS. The mission of the CHRONOS is to produce a dynamic, global timescale to frame Earth History events and processes for societal benefit. It has been recognized that a major direction of geoscience in the 21 st century is the improvement and extension of facilities to collect and analyze data on local, regional and global spatial scales and appropriate temporal scales in which massive data archiving and distribution systems, both hardware and software, are required to provide access to geodata. A group of 30 international stratigraphers and information-technology specialists that represented the spectrum from paleontology to cycle-stratigraphy to paleomagnetism assembled at Amherst, Massachusetts in Nov. 2001 to prepare a plan for a comprehensive suite of g
【Fund】: 国家重点基础研究发展规划项目 ( G2 0 0 0 0 7770 );; 科技基础性工作专项资金项目 ( No.2 0 0 1DEA2 0 0 2 0 -4 )资助。
【CateGory Index】: P534
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