Working Groups

Current INQUA Working Groups:

SEQS Working Group: Section on European Quaternary Stratigraphy (SEQS-DATESTRA)

SEQS is a group devoted to the study of the Quaternary Period in Europe, the last 2.6 million years of Earth’s history. This interdisciplinary group is concerned with the Quaternary stratigraphy of Europe. It provides a forum for Quaternary scientists to discuss and establish stratigraphical investigations and classification throughout the European continent, one of the most significant and densely investigated regions of the World. It seeks to achieve this through the organization of regular meetings, publications and publicity. In addition a network of Working Groups with a specific mandates are established under the auspices of the Subcommission.

During the 2016-2019 Intercongress period SEQS will establish a Geographic Stratigraphical Database of Terrestrial European key-sites: DATESTRA. This is a European Geographic Stratigraphical Database that will summarize the activities and the projects carried out by SEQS during the previous Intra-Congress periods when scientists from all over Europe and adjacent areas during the SEQS annual Meetings visited, observed and discussed highly detailed sedimentary records and depositional sequences in different geodynamic contexts. DATESTRA should constitute the first step to create a common base for all the Quaternary scientists who want to have a concise overview of the main stratigraphical subdivisions across the boundaries of Europe.

Leaders: Markus Fiebig (Austria); Pierluigi Pieruccini (Italy); Guzel Danukalova (Russia)

Contact: Prof Markus Fiebig ([email protected])

Website link SEQS:

Website link DATESTRA:


Peribaltic Working Group

Peribaltic Working Group is a scientific community from 12 countries located in the area of the Pleistocene Scandinavian Ice Sheet (SIS) influence. Our members are involved in the wide range of studies, including among others:

1.     Chronology, dynamics and scope of SIS in the Pleistocene

2.     Reconstruction of climate change and depositional environments based on mineral and organic deposits.

3.     Palaeoecological studies and interaction of natural environments with early human activities.

4.     Palaeoseismic activity in the Quaternary.

Our activities are focused on creating of international projects and cooperation. Their results are presented during annual meetings organized in particular countries. The special attention is paid on improving of young scientists skills during workshops and summer schools 

The Peribaltic Working Group (WG) is a regional group of researchers active in different fields of Quaternary science. WG’s research areas are related to the glacial history of the Peribaltic region during the Quaternary. This European region is located in the immediate reach or influence of the Scandinavian Ice Sheet (SIS). A specific feature of this region is the overwhelming influence of processes of glacioisostatic rebound on the ranges of the sea, fluvial facies, lacustrine and others, and perfectly visible in the central part of Fennoscandia in former coastlines of the Baltic and White Seas. Main research areas of the group are: 1) Chronology, dynamics and scope of SIS in the Pleistocene. 2) Reconstruction of climate change and depositional environments based on mineral deposits and organic materials. 3) Reconstruction of the evolution of the palaeogeography of the Peribaltic region. 4) Determination of the interaction between the SIS and its ground and extra glacial area.

President: Pertti Sarala (Finland) ([email protected])

Vice-presidents: Andreas Börner (Germany; [email protected]), Malgorzata Frydrych (Poland; [email protected])

Secretary: Gražyna Kluczynska (Lithuania) ([email protected])

Contact: Pertti Sarala (Finland) ([email protected])



Palaeopedology Working Group

Terrestrial soil-sedimentary sequences and surface polygenic soils (getting over at least one environmental change) are highly valuable terrestrial environmental archives especially advantageous for the Quaternary. Surface polygenic soils as well as fossil soils (palaeosols) in soil-sedimentary sequences record environments of their formation within the phases of relative land surface stability. In contrast, each sediment layer burying a soil indicates an event or episode of geomorphological instability due to climatic forcing or tectonics. Paleopedologists treat paleosols and soil-sedimentary sequences as a unique substantive record (archive, memory) of environmental change. Environmental information in soils accumulates due to an action of variable specific soil forming (terrestrial) processes which result in a specific set of soil features and finally in an assemblage of soil genetic horizons. Due to multiphase composition of soils and multi-factor regularities of soil formation, pedology and paleopedology are interdisciplinary fields at the interface of geology, biology and geography. That supposes constant interactions of pedology and paleopedology with all mentioned disciplines, in particular, wide interrelations within INQUA, and collaborative participation of paleosol community in integrative Quaternary studies. Paleopedology Working Group integrates researches dealing with polygenic soils and paleosols as one of the paleoenviromental proxies. We are willing to correlate different proxies for more evidenced reconstructions of past climate change and landscape dynamics and for a deeper understanding of multiphase soil system within geosphere.

The next meeting will be held from 8-18 August 2021.


Leaders: Maria Bronnikova (Russia), Elizabeth Solleiro Rebolledo (Mexico), Tobias Sprafke (Switzerland)

Contact: Maria Bronnikova ([email protected])




Loess Working Group

The International Focus Group on Loess and Pedostratigraphy originated at the 6th INQUA Congress in Poland in 1961 as the INQUA Sub-Commission of European Loess Stratigraphy, a specialist group operating within the remit of the Stratigraphy Commission. This initiative was due to Julius Fink of the University of Vienna and it was his vision of loess research in Europe which provided the structure and drove forward the activities of the sub-commission in the early days. In fact it was Fink’s vision which carried the Loess Commission through its entire 40 year existence. At the 8th INQUA Congress in Paris in 1969 the Sub-Commission was upgraded to full Commission status, and by then the programe was settled and a considerable amount of activity had occurred. 

The Loess and Pedostratigraphy Working Group connects a global scientific community that works collectively to better understand loess deposits and palaeosols worldwide. This unique group brings together researchers from a number of disciplines, including archaeology, geochemistry, geochronology (radiocarbon and luminescence dating), geology, geomorphology, palaeoclimate, pedology, paleoecology, stratigraphy, and tephrochronology. Due to the preservation of loess deposits worldwide, these approaches are applied to multiple timescales, with research into sub-orbital as well as orbital timescales, Holocene to Early Pleistocene. Through these multidisciplinary collaborations, the group aims to provide a better understanding of the Quaternary.

Leaders: Zdzisław Jary (Poland), Kathryn Fitzsimmons (Germany), Qingzhen Hao (China), Brett R. Lenz (USA)

Contact: President -  Zdzisław Jary ([email protected] ); Secretary - Kaja Fenn ([email protected])

Website link: