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The inaugural SAAG Biennial Conference was hosted by the University of Transkei (now Walter Sisulu University) from 9-10 April 1988 in Umtata (Mthatha), South Africa. Paper presented covered various themes, including:

  • Long-term geomorphological evolution;

  • Desert dune systems;

  • Periglacial features;

  • Aspects of Quaternary climatic change;

  • Process studies;

  • Soil erosion; and

  • Significant environmental problem throughout southern Africa.

Organising Committee & Sponsors

The conference would not have been possible without the dedication and sponsorship of multiple individuals.

  • The conference was organised by the 1988 SAAG conference organising committee consisting of Professor GS Dardis, Patricia Hanvey and Heinz Beckedahl (all from the University of Transkei), Dr BP Moon from the University of the Witwatersrand, and the University of Transkei.

  • Dr Dardis, Patricia Hanvey and Heinz Beckedahl are thanked for organising pre- and post-Symposium excursions.

  • The University of Transkei and Anglo-American-De Beers are thanked for financial contributions, without which the conference would not have been possible.


Two books were published at the conference. These were:

  • The Geomorphology of South Africa (Southern Publications, Johannesburg): a collection of invited essays on various aspects of the landscapes of the subcontinent; and

  • Geomorphological Studies in Southern Africa (Balkema, Rotterdam): proceedings of the Symposium.

In addition Dardis, Hanvey and Beckedahl produced field guides for the pre- and post-conference excursions. The post-conference excursion traveled through Southern Africa and as such was only the second excursion to look at the geomorphology of the sub-continent (the first being one arranged by Lester King & Walther Penck in the early 1950s). 

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