​The International Association for Promoting Geoethics (IAPG)

is a multidisciplinary, scientific platform for widening the discussion and creating awareness about problems of Ethics applied to the Geosciences.

IAPG is legally recognized as a not-for-profit association, has more than 2281 members in 127 countries on 5 continents, and can count on a network of 30 national sections

What is Geoethics?

Geoethics consists of research and reflection on the values which underpin appropriate behaviours and practices, wherever human activities interact with the Earth system. Geoethics deals with the ethical, social and cultural implications of geoscience education, research and practice, and with the social role and responsibility of geoscientists in conducting their activities.

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Affiliations and Agreements

IAPG promotes geoethics through the international collaboration with Associations and Institutions.
Read more about affiliations, agreements, partnerships:
7 affiliations
20 agreements for cooperation
3 partnerships
AffiliationsIUGS - International Union of Geological Sciences, ICPHS - International Council for Philosophy and Human Sciences, AGI - American Geosciences Institute, GSL - Geological Society of London, CFES - Canadian Federation of Earth Sciences, GSA - Geological Society of America, GIRAF - Geoscience Information in Africa Network.
AgreementsEFG - European Federation of Geologists, EGS - EuroGeoSurveys, AGU - American Geophysical Union, IAH - International Association of Hydrogeologists, IAG/AIG - International Association of Geomorphologists, IUGS-IFG - Initiative on Forensic Geology, AAWG - African Association of Women in Geosciences, IAEG - International Association for Engineering Geology and the Environment, GC - Geoscientists Canada, BDG - Berufsverband Deutscher Geowissenschaftler e.V., NKUA-APRL - The National and Kapodistrian University of Athens - Applied Philosophy Research Laboratory, GfGD - Geology for Global Development, AEG - Association of Environmental & Engineering Geologists, YES - International Network of Young and Early-Career Geoscientists, IGEO - International Geoscience Education Organisation, FCEA - Forum for Climate Engineering Assessment, SGP - Sociedad Geológica del Perù, I-GEMA - Instituto de Geociencias Y Medio Ambiente, Arequipa-Perù, ANGE - African Network for Geo-Education, GEVAS Red Argentina.
Partnerships: AGU Ethics & Equity CenterIYGU - International Year of Global Understanding, RFG 2018 - Resources for Future Generations.
IAPG symposium 1.7 on geoethics at the 36th IGC - International Geological Congress, Delhi (India), 2020

36th IGC - International Geological Congress

Delhi (India), 2-8 March 2020

The IAPG organizes the following symposium under the Theme 1 "GEOSCIENCE FOR SOCIETY".

Symposium 1.7 "Geoethics: Ethical, Social, and Cultural Aspects in Geosciences".

Chaired by:

Silvia Peppoloni (silvia.peppoloni@ingv.it) (Italy), Nic Bilham (UK), Peter T. Bobrowsky (Canada), Martin Bohle (Belgium), Vincent S. Cronin (USA), Giuseppe Di Capua (Italy).

Acknowledging the role of Geoscientists at the service of society, this symposium, proposed by IAPG - International Association for Promoting Geoethics, aims to develop ethical and social discussion on following topics, including case-studies:

a) Theoretical aspects of geoethics.

b) Research integrity and professional deontology in geosciences.

c) Ethical aspects of geoscience education (including the issue from theory to educational practice) and communication.

d) Geoethics in natural-anthropogenic risk management.

e) Geoethics for responsible use of geo-resources, including legislation, best practices, and social  acceptance for mining activities.

f) Geoethics in addressing global societal challenges.

Abstract submission deadline: 15 November 2019 (no abstract submission fee)

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We are proud to announce the launch a new important initiative on geoethics.


On 20 July 2019, Peter T. Bobrowsky, Giuseppe Di Capua, and Silvia Peppoloni have founded the School on Geoethics and Natural Issues (Schola de Geoethica et Naturae Quaestionibus), in short the "Schola".


Dr. PhD Silvia Peppoloni is the Director of the "Schola".

The "Schola" aims to provide excellent education in geoethics, thus promoting the development of a scientific and critical attitude to the knowledge of the Earth and its constituent systems, by fostering a growth of awareness and responsibility towards the planet, education in the values and actions underlying a respect for ecosystems, including responsible use of resources, management of natural risks, reduction of pollution and its repercussions on human health and climate, adaptation to environmental changes, in view of an accountable and ecologically sustainable development.

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The NKUA-APRL and the IAPG signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on 30 September 2019.

The aim of the MoU is to cooperate on developing empirical and/or theoretical research in the areas of geoethics and bioethics, and to coordinate activities aimed at promoting the discussion on the ethical, social and cultural implications of geosciences and biosciences.

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Silvia Peppoloni, research geologist at the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Secretary General of the IAPG - International Association for Promoting Geoethics, introduces the audience to the concepts of geoethical issues and dilemmas. 

The video is part of the Intellectual Outputs (IO1) of the European Erasmus+ project GOAL "Geoethics Outcomes and Awareness Learning" (https://goal-erasmus.eu/). IAPG is official partner of the project GOAL.



We are pleased to inform that the Geoethics Medal 2019 of the IAPG has been awarded to Linda Gundersen, scientist emeritus at the U.S. Geological Survey, "for her unselfish work and scholarly contributions in leading the advancement in scientific integrity and professional ethics in the geosciences. Gundersen’s transformative work across governmental, academic, non-profit, and private institutions has made her one of the world’s leading authorities in “geoethical” scholarship, policy and practice. Linda Gundersen was one of the early leaders in proactively promoting what is now called geoethics. She created and was first Director of the USGS Office of Science Quality and Integrity, implementing bureau-wide programs in scientific integrity, ethics, publication, research excellence, post-doctoral fellows, youth internships, education, and Tribal relations. Since retiring in 2012 she has dedicated her time to promoting scientific integrity, ethics, and diversity in the geosciences, including leading and/or influencing major ethics policy revisions at the American Geophysical Union, the American Geosciences Institute, The Geological Society of America, and the U.S. National Academies of Sciences. Linda sets the example for highest standard of geoethics service, practice, and scholarly excellence."

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Silvia Peppoloni, research geologist at the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Secretary General of the IAPG - International Association for Promoting Geoethics, introduces the audience to the definition and meaning of geoethics, also from a philosophical point of view; she highlights the main characteristics of geoethics and the concept of responsibility; illustrates the four ethical dimensions of geoethics; describes the themes of geoethics and the fields of its application.

The video is part of the Intellectual Outputs (IO1) of the European Erasmus+ project GOAL "Geoethics Outcomes and Awareness Learning" (https://goal-erasmus.eu/). IAPG is official partner of the project GOAL.


Ethical Implications, Societal Contexts, and Professional Obligations of the Geosciences

Martin Bohle (Ed.)
2019, Palgrave Pivot, Cham, XIV + 214, ISBN 978-3-030-12009-2
Authors: Martin Bohle, Silvia Peppoloni, Giuseppe Di Capua, Nic Bilham, Eduardo Marone, Rika Preiser

This book explores the potential of geoethics, as designed within the operational criteria of addressing the deeds and values of the human agent as part of the Earth system. It addresses three key questions: i) what should be considered 'geoethics' in an operational sense, ii) what is peripheral to it, and iii) is there a case therefore to establish a denomination, such as geo-humanities or geosophy, to capture a broader scope of thinking about geoscience and its interactions with society and the natural world, for the benefit of the geo-professionals and others.

The book begins by framing, contextualising and describing contemporary geoethics, then goes on to cover several examples of geoethical thinking and explores the societal intersections of geosciences in the planetary 'human niche'. The concluding chapter discusses the challenges facing the emerging field of geoethics and how it may evolve in the future. 

Bringing together a set of experts across multiple interdisciplinary fields this collection will appeal to scholars, researchers, practitioners and students within geosciences and social sciences, political sciences as well as the humanities. It will interest those who are curious about how ethical reflections relate to professional duties, scholarly interests, activities in professional geoscience associations, or responsible citizenship in times of anthropogenic global change. 

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Porto (Portugal), 18-22 May 2020

The joint event IAPG - International Association for Promoting Geoethics and IAH - International Association of Hydrogeologists will be an excellent occasion for discussing and sharing values, best practices and strategies to manage water resources for a sustainable future.


Cape Town Statement on Geoethics

It sums up all the values, concepts, contents developed by IAPG, giving a perspective for the future development of geoethics. Supported by 22 geoscience organizations and available in 35 languages

Geoethical Promise

A Hippocratic-like oath for geoscientists, originally proposed at the 34th IGC-International Geological Congress in Brisbane (Australia). Translated in 35 languages

White Paper on Responsible Mining

It intends to provide essential reference elements for framing this important topic from an ethical perspective. Drafted by the IAPG Task Group on Responsible Mining and approved by IAPG EC on 1 December 2017


in Geoethics

It envisions a series of short publications that aim to discuss ethical, social, and cultural implications of geosciences knowledge, education, research, practice and communication. 


"... This paper argues that geoethical values as stated in the Cape Town Statement on Geoethics and in the Geoethical Promise, should be strongly introduced even in the Dimension Stone Industry, especially considering that this economic sector has been greatly increasing its
activities. ..."

Read the full article (pdf)

Publications on geoethics


(Nicolas Charles - PanAfGeo, Djimadoum Nambatingar - Organization of African Geological Surveys, Enrique Diaz-Martinez - European Association for the Conservation of Geological Heritage, Ezzoura Errami - African Association of Women in Geosciences and African Geoparks Network)
Antananarivo (Madagascar), 8 June 2019


Other resources of interest

Principles of Water Ethics
(by B. Jennings, K. Gwiazdon, P. Heltne)

"... The significance of water for life and health is fundamental and can scarcely be overstated, and hence the pertinence of ethics to water utilization and management is clear in a general sense. It is important for everyone involved in water resource management and in public health to have a well-reasoned understanding of the moral values and obligations that correspond to that significance.  ... "


Documents and online resources on topics of interest for geoethics

The ‘Anthropocene Proposal’: A Possible Quandary and A Work-Around
(by Martin Bohle and Nic Bilham)

" ... it appears practical to distinguish in the geological time scale between the ´geological past’ and the ‘geologically contemporary’, and to denote a transition point between them, situated in the (recent) past of human history. ..."

Read the full article (pdf)

Publications on geoethics

Geoethics, an Antidote in a Wicked 'Human Niche'?
(by Martin Bohle, IAPG Board of Experts, Germany)

" ... Because geoethical thinking is knowledge-based, the interventions of the actors are nourished by insights into the system behaviour (of natural, technological and human systems). As geoethical thinking is concerned about social and political contexts, the actors should be able to intervene in a value-sensitive and culture-conscious manner. ...."

Read the article in the IAPG Blog

Other articles published in the IAPG Blog

Circular economy is about resource efficiency, not "only" recycling
(by Nikolaos Arvaniditis, IAPG Task Group on Responsible Mining, Sweden)

" ... An important aspect to be also considered is whether resource efficiency and circular economy can contribute to limiting or managing in a better way the growing public opinion on mining...."

Read the article in the IAPG Blog

Other articles published in the IAPG Blog

In evidence
Support the IAPG, make your donation!
the IAPG Newsletter
Issue n. 4 - 2019  

October 11, 2019


Click to download

Mining with Principles

"... We believe that environmental conservation and mining can co-exist when companies commit to a set of principles focussed on managing and mitigating the impact of mining and metals activities ..."

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

On 25 September 2015, countries adopted a set of goals to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all as part of a new sustainable development agenda. Each goal has specific targets to be achieved over the next 15 years.

(update: 8 October 2019)
2281 members in 127 countries
30 national sections
7 Affiliations
20 Agreements for Cooperation
3 Partnerships
(from 1 October 2012): 
69,949 Visits
57,455 Visitors
from 186 countries
Disclaimer: Personal views and opinions expressed by those who serve IAPG in a voluntary capacity or who publish through IAPG do not necessarily reflect those of IAPG and its constituent and associated committees and organisations

All rights reserved © 2015-2019

International Association for Promoting Geoethics

Via di Vigna Murata 605, 00143 Rome (Italy) | iapgeoethics@aol.com

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Vienna (Austria)

EGU 2019: signature of the MoU between IAPG and IAG - International Association of Geomorphologists