September 10‐13, 2019
Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, Brussels, Belgium



Host committee
Scientific committee
Welcome to the RBINS – Brussels
Preliminary Scientific Program
Keynote lectures
Hotel and accommodation
Registration fees
Social Program
Field Trips
Important dates

International symposium

Evolution and Paleoenvironment

of Early Modern Vertebrates

during the Paleogene

First Circular

Pre-registration form

How to reach the RBINS ?

Hotels and accomodations

PalEurAfrica Meeting 2019

In the framework of the PalEurAfrica research project (see, we are happy to invite you to the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences (RBINS) for an international symposium related to the evolution and paleoenvironment of early modern vertebrates. This will allow us to gather specialists who work on macro- and micropaleontology, bio- and isotope stratigraphy, paleoenvironment, paleogeography, and geology of Paleogene vertebrate bearing sites.


This international meeting will also celebrate the memory of one of our PalEurAfrica partners, Gregg Gunnell (1954-2017), who tragically died unexpectedly in the middle of his career, having made significant contributions to our understanding of research on Paleogene vertebrate evolutionary history.

Host committee

Thierry Smith (Chair) – Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, Brussels, Belgium
Thierry De Putter – Royal Museum for Central Africa, Tervuren, Belgium
Stephen Louwye – Universiteit Gent, Gent, Belgium
Johan Yans – Université de Namur, Namur, Belgium
Matthew Borths – Duke University Lemur Center, Durham, NC, USA
Nancy Stevens – Ohio University, Athens, OH, USA


Scientific committee

Massimo Delfino – Università di Torino, Torino, Italy
Gilles Escarguel – Université de Lyon, Lyon, France
Annelise Folie – Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, Brussels, Belgium
Emmanuel Gheerbrant – Museum national d’Histoire Naturelle, Paris, France
Jason Head – University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
Gerald Mayr – Senckenberg Forschungsinstitut und Naturmuseum, Frankfurt, Germany
Florias Mees – Royal Museum for Central Africa, Tervuren, Belgium
Ellen R. Miller – Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC, USA
Adán Pérez-García – Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia, Madrid, Spain
Rajendra Singh Rana – H.N.B. Garhwal University, Srinagar, Uttarakhand, India
Hesham M. Sallam – Mansoura University, Mansoura, Egypt
Floréal Solé – Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, Brussels, Belgium
Robert Speijer – Universiteit Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
Rodolphe Tabuce – Université de Montpellier, Montpellier, France


Welcome to the RBINS – Brussels

The meeting will take place in the conference rooms of the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, located in the center of the city of Brussels next to the European parliament. (


Please find more informations about how to reach the RBINS here.

Preliminary Scientific Program

As we are united by a common scientific interest – Paleogene vertebrates and their environments – talks shall be presented unopposed in a single venue, the main auditorium (150 seats) of the RBINS. The organizing committee will decide, after reception of pre-registrations forms, to update the scientific program taking into account thematic interests.

Theme 1: Paleogene vertebrate morphology

Topic 1. Systematics and Phylogenetics
Topic 2. Functional anatomy and Ecomorphology

Theme 2: Stratigraphy

Topic 3. Biostratigraphy: mammals, palynomorphs, foraminiferans, nannofossils, charophytes…
Topic 4. Isotope stratigraphy

Theme 3: Paleoenvironment and Paleobiogeography

Topic 5. Abiotic variables in vertebrate evolution: Geology, Tectonics and Climate
Topic 6. Biotic variables in vertebrate evolution: Floral change, Faunal change, and Dispersal


Keynote lectures

At least three invited conferences will be scheduled for plenary sessions.



All of the accepted abstracts will be compiled and edited in pdf format. The electronic version of these abstracts and the final program will be available on the PalEurAfrica website ( Oral and poster presentations will be scheduled in the final program.


Hotel and accommodation

Hotel reservations shall be arranged by the participants themselves by contacting and booking directly. Brussels has many possibilities of accommodation, from hotels of different categories to youth hostel and campsites (Hotels list).


Registration fees

The registration fees are expressly low to encourage participation in the congress, particularly for young scientists who wish to integrate into the community of Paleogene paleontologists and geologists. Registration fees cover costs of the abstract volume, ice breaker party, coffee breaks, and guided tours. Registration and payment mode will be detailed in the second circular.

Student: 30 EUR (before July 1st 2019), 40 EUR (before September 1st 2019)
Regular: 50 EUR (before July 1st 2019), 70 EUR (before September 1st 2019)


Social Program


An icebreaker party will take place on the evening of September 10th 2019 in the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences.

A congress dinner will be organized, for which the price should be limited to 35 EUR.

A guided tour of the RBINS exhibitions will be organized during the meeting.

A second visit of exhibitions will be organized at the renovated Royal Museum for Central Africa (Tervuren), which is only at 14 km from RBINS.

Workshops can be proposed (see pre-registration form). A vertebrate cast exchange is already scheduled.


Field Trips

The definitive list of field trips will be detailed in the second circular depending upon the participant interests (see pre-registration form), and permission for access to private lands. If possible, we intend to visit several classic Belgian Paleogene localities including Dormaal, Hoegaarden, Egem, and Hoogbutsel-Boutersem.



Of the 38 million specimens housed at RBINS ( three millions are in the paleontology division. Among these are famous Paleogene collections, such as the mammals of Hainin and Dormaal (European MP reference levels), the Thanetian champsosaurs of Erquelinnes, the Ypresian crocodiles, turtles, and birds, Casier’s Lutetian sharks, and Leriche’s Rupelian fishes. For access to collections, please contact Annelise Folie (, curator of paleontology collections.


Important dates

April 1-15, 2019 2nd circular, registration opening
May 15, 2019 Deadline for abstract submission
June 15, 2019 Evaluation of abstracts and e-mail of acceptance
June 30, 2019 Deadline for early registration
August 30, 2019 Deadline for late registration, Final program (3rd circular), abstracts available on website
September 10-13, 2019 Scientific sessions- PalEurAfrica meeting