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Annual Meeting 2020 - Virtual Meeting: Overview

Number: 64th Annual Meeting
Year: 2020
Location: Virtual Meeting
Hosted By: Oxford University Museum of Natural History, UK
Organised By: Organising committee chaired by Dr Jack Matthews
General Contact Email:


The Annual Meeting of the Palaeontological Association will be held between 16-18 December 2020, and run as a virtual conference, with all events taking place online. The organising committee is chaired by Dr Jack Matthews, and the event will be hosted online by the Oxford University Museum of Natural History.  

This year’s virtual Annual Meeting offers the opportunity for attendees from around the world to watch presentations live, and interact, discuss, and debate palaeontology in real-time. As well as three exciting styles of presentations, the meeting will also feature a Symposium, Annual Address, the Annual General Meeting and a number of interactive and engaging social events.  

You can download this year's abstract booklet HERE.

Annual Meeting e-mail updates

Registered delegates should ensure that their inbox is able to recieve e-mail updates from Important information is being distributed via e-mail for delegates, including guidance for those presenting research. If you have not received these e-mails, please check your spam folder, and amend your spam filter settings.

Code of Conduct

We ask that all delegates familiarise themselves with the Palaeontological Association’s Code of Conduct for the meeting.

It is the expectation of the Palaeontological Association that meeting attendees behave in a courteous, collegial and respectful fashion to each other, volunteers, exhibitors and meeting facility staff. Attendees should respect common sense rules for professional and personal interactions, public behaviour (including behaviour in public electronic communications), common courtesy, respect for private property and respect for intellectual property of presenters. Demeaning, abusive, discriminatory, harassing or threatening behaviour towards other attendees or towards meeting volunteers, exhibitors or facilities staff and security will not be tolerated, either in personal or electronic interactions.

If you are the subject of unacceptable behaviour or have witnessed any such behaviour, you can report it to us (anonymously if you choose to) via our online reporting form:

Anyone experiencing or witnessing behaviour that constitutes an immediate or serious threat to public safety, or a criminal act is expected to contact the appropriate law enforcement agency. Those witnessing a potential criminal act should also take actions necessary to maintain their own personal safety.


This year the organisers have arranged for a number of illustrators to attend the Annual Meeting. Inspired by the presentations being made, they will be making their illustrations available online, so do keep an eye on social media to catch your favourite talks in artistic form.

Social media

With the Annual Meeting taking place online, social media becomes an even more important way for us to share our experience of the meeting with others. Please be respectful of the wishes of authors if they do not wish their work to shared online. We look forward to hearing all your thoughts on various social media outlets, and encourage the use of the official hashtag #PalAss20.


Numerous channels will be available on Discord during the meeting. For example a PhD student meet-up channel will be available for the duration of the conference, and an LGBTQ+ meet-up will be operational from 12.30 until 18.45 on Wednesday 16th December. Several meeting rooms will be available on Discord for any delegates to use during the conference..


For our Virtual Annual Meeting it seemed appropriate that the logo should feature a virtual fossil. This model of a trilobite, an enrolled Bailiaspis ? glabrata, is based on CT scans and 3D reconstructions by Imran Rahman, Deputy Head of Research at the Oxford University Museum of Natural History and member of the Organising Committee. The model is part of 3D computer simulations associated with a paper in Palaeontology by Jorge Esteve and colleagues on modelling enrolment in Cambrian trilobites. The image is used with their permission.

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