© Journal of Hydrocarbons Mines and Environmental Research, ISSN: 2107-6510, Volume 1, Issue 1, June 2010, 38-39

Geo Africa Sciences Society: a new challenge for Earth Sciences in Africa

Abdelkader Saadallah 1,*, Khaled Boulaziz 2 and Tahar Aïfa 3

1 Saadgeo, Misjonsveien 39, 4024 Stavanger, Norway
2 European Resource AS, C. Jacobsen 14,4010 Stavanger, Norway
3 Géosciences-Rennes, CNRS UMR6118, Université de Rennes 1, Bat.15, Campus de Beaulieu, 35042 Rennes cedex, France
* corresponding author: (A. Saadallah)

Received: 27 October 2010 - Accepted: 29 October 2010 - Available online: 29 October 2010

We took action and create Geo Africa Sciences Society, in short GeoAfricaSciences (; an NGO based in Norway, and so under Norwegian laws and rules. We all are within networks of geoscientists worldwide, and with strong relationships with Africa.

(To see the existence of GeoAfricaSciences, go to

We have been inspired by several existing societies, with great experiences, in the same time we aim to build a global organisation, able to bring progress to geoscientists based in Africa, and elsewhere, interested by Africa.
We aim to share experience of colleagues regarding geosciences as a whole, universal patrimony, and to Africa as a continent.
The main characteristics of the 21st century have to be taken into account, and in the same time keeping in mind to target colleagues in Africa; and among them colleagues who sometimes are often outside the global geosciences network, and therefore suffering of lack of exchanges, new ideas and technologies, new methodologies and new ways to look at old data.
It is a global and a continental society aiming to build a network of geoscientists interested in Africa, ready to contribute through different ways as much as they can. Therefore how to organise these twofold aspect in one organisation?
We think, local and national chapters are one mean to encourage members develop their skills and experiences with strong links to global network through GeoAfricaSciences Society. This concern is one important aspect of the status “...Depending on opportunities the Executive Board shall help create Local Chapter (e.g. GeoAfricaSciences in Algiers) according to local laws and rules, where there is a relevant concentration of geoscientists, and committed to GeoAfricaSciences rules and conditions: a real program of activities containing at least monthly conference/debate… create National Chapter (e.g. GeoAfricaSciences in Angola) according to national laws/rules, with a real monthly program of conference/debates and at least one (1) annual activity (conference, workshop, field conference, training, course, expositions…). Participation of members/non members from other countries is encouraged…”

GeoAfricaSciences is aiming to build up network between members and to promote exchanges, information, spread knowledge in GeoSciences and related other disciplines. Africa remains the main goal, and so GeoAfricaSciences members should always keep this in mind.
GeoAfricaSciences shall as much as it can be, help members: 1- Develop their skills, 2- Initiate businesses, and 3- Improve/Modernise activities of theirs institutions and companies.

During the actual and coming years, geoscientists in Africa should be able at the same time to carry out their job with less means and have a relative good understanding of the same job fulfilled with modern tools and methodologies. That means, in the one hand able to complete basic field studies, do their job such as geological mapping with an old topographic map, a compass, a hammer, a field note book, a pencil, a rubber! They will have to do that because they are working in public/private company/institution still using traditional tools and methods; or as a consultant, starting his/her own company with a few means. In the second hand, they may have a chance to do the same job with modern tools such as a GPS, satellite photos, a geological mapping software package, a powerful laptop, with already data about the region downloaded from several websites. Because they might get a job in a global company investing and working in Africa, or the company/institution is modernising its working methodologies and means.

Starting from that, how can GeoAfricaSciences contribute to reach these double aims? A Challenge we all have to address!
GeoAfricaSciences is a non-profit organization, nevertheless we need money to fuel all the activities we are planning, subscriptions of members are not enough and so donations and sponsors from institutions, governments, and companies, at local, national, continental and global scales are needed.

We started the first issue of the monthly newsletter; if you are interested to get it send an email to

There are three (3) great types of ongoing jobs: 1- open online manual about every country in Africa decrypted by geosciences, 2- working books of every geosciences discipline; and 3- dictionary focussing on geosciences main definitions, examples, notions and concepts.

We start kicking off by posting and improving progressively!

1- Presentation of every African country analysed under Geosciences
In this regard, we start with the first one posted on the website, it is about Algeria: “Algeria Analysed by Geosciences”. In addition to the classical Geology of Algeria, underground resources are included, and Geophysics, Geothermal, Seismotectonics, Geotechnics, environment and pollution, and other topics such as Geoheritage and Geotourism.
Does that means it should never end, such as a non-stop research for a better knowledge?
Any Geo Africa Sciences member can contribute as editor/author/reviewer, by submitting article(s) to the editor. Preferably, members should review their article proposal by colleagues from their working environment or from other places, and in the same time the reviewers will be mentioned in the article proposal. A basic ethic rule in Geosciences!
English and French are used because they are the major languages to communicate GeoSciences in Africa and globally. Contribution of anyone is most welcome!

2- Outline of each Geosciences discipline
First launch of “Structural Geology”, open manual is on its way!

3- Dictionary (English and French) with its double sides: universal to global geosciences and particular to African countries geosciences specificities.
It is still on the agenda with one big challenge how to start and how to do it?
In addition to these main tasks there are other issues such as:
Information, may be posted at daily or/and weekly frequency, in the same time we are hopping to improve the monthly newsletter.
Business and jobs opportunities, a real challenge issue will be addressed soon, hopefully.
Regarding the forum discussions, for the time being soon we will implement one within LinkedIn (thanks LinkedIn!)
Team methodology is the central way to carry out these tasks and more importantly to update that.

So join us and contribute to these fascinating global and continental goals; be a member of GeoAfricaSciences!

Abdelkader Saadallah, Khaled Boulaziz and Tahar Aïfa,
Founders of GeoAfricaSciences,
Stavanger, October 27th 2010

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