Conference/Workshop/Seminar : Archaeology
  • 2015
  • Indo-UK joint symposium 2015
    Indo-UK joint symposium on "Establishing a baseline for Understanding Late Quaternary megafaunal extinctions in India: local and global contexts", held in Pune 411001, from 16th to 18th February 2015.

    The Deccan College Deemed University in collaboration with Zoological Society of London, UK organised in the city of Pune, three days symposium on the topic titled "Establishing a baseline for Understanding Late Quaternary megafaunal extinctions in India: local and global contexts". The discussions on extinction events with special reference to the Late Quaternary period in India were at the centre stage of the three day proceedings and the output has made the endeavour a memorable academic event ever held specifically on such a topic in India so far. The Symposium was organised by Dr. Samuel Turvey Thomas, Institute of Zoology, Zoological Society of London, Regent's Park, NW1 4RY, U.K. and Prof Vijay Sathe, Deccan College Postgraduate and Research Institute (Deemed University), Pune 411006. The three-day symposium, which included 19 conference presentations, represented the starting point of this international collaboration between attending UK and Indian scientists into the timing of Late Quaternary megafaunal extinctions in India. The proceedings were attended by several scientists, postgraduate students and senior and retired professors who have made pioneering contributions to the Quaternary science and ecology. Spread over the period of three days, the deliberations were organised in the following sessions:

    Session 1 : Environments and climates of Late Quaternary India
    Session 2 : Current evidence on Late Quaternary megafaunal diversity and turnover in India: past and present
    Session 3 : Approaches and challenges in working with Quaternary data
    Session 4 : Established and novel approaches for investigating Quaternary faunas and extinctions
    Session 5 : Improving our understanding of Late Quaternary megafaunal turnover in India: identification of future directions and key research questions
    Session 6 : How can we use an improved understanding of Late Quaternary faunal dynamics to inform current day ecosystem and conservation management? Linking past and present

    The aim of this symposium to bring together Indian and UK scientists from across a series of related Quaternary disciplines – palaeontology, molecular biology, palaeoecology, archaeozoology, archaeology, geology, climatology, palaeobotany, wildlife conservation and ornithology has truly been rewarding. It provided for the first time a common forum to review current knowledge of Indian Quaternary faunas and extinctions, and assess how to incorporate new developments applied in other Quaternary research (radiometric dating, probabilistic extinction analysis, auditing of data quality/biases, biomolecular analysis, ecological reconstruction using proxies) to better understand the Indian Quaternary in an international context. This meeting has provided a timely platform to review current knowledge of Indian Quaternary faunas and extinctions, offered insights to incorporate new developments applied in other Quaternary research (radiometric dating, probabilistic extinction analysis, auditing of data quality/biases, biomolecular analysis, ecological reconstruction using proxies) to better understand the Indian Quaternary in an international context.

    On the last day of the symposium, a cultural programme was organised where Shri Tarish Sathe (Sarod), Shri Milind Tulankar (Jaltarang) and Shri Parimal Phadake (Bharatnatyam) presented various art forms of Indian classical music and dance, showcasing the fineries of Indian art. As part of the post symposium excursion, the participants visited World Heritage site of Elephants Caves near Mumbai and on site lectures on the art and iconography of the caves were delivered by eminent art historian and archaeologist, Dr. Suraj Pandit of Sathaye College, Mumbai.


    The collaborated in this academic endeavour included the following institutions:
    1. Institute of Zoology, Zoological Society of London
    2. Department of Archaeology, Deccan College Post Graduate and Research Institute
    3. Natural History Museum, London
    4. Oxford Long-term Ecology Laboratory, University of Oxford
    5. Center for Advanced study in Geology, Panjab University, Chandigarh
    6. Center for Earth Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru
    7. Center for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru
    8. Institute of Environment Education & Research, Pune
    9. Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, Pune
    10. Watershed Organization Trust, Pune

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