Doing What We Say We Do

Inclusivity – Integrating Geoscience and a Global AAPG

AAPG has a long heritage – in fact, ever since our inception in 1917 – of sharing excellent petroleum geoscience with an ever-broadening circle of geoscientists.

Today AAPG has grown into a global association, now on the verge of starting our second century, and we continue to focus on inclusivity at many levels as we work to maintain the delivery of excellent geoscience, professional development and service to our members around the world – as well as providing service and innovation relevant to our ever more interrelated global society.

You might ask: What are we actually doing to broaden and continue to grow that circle of increasing knowledge and inclusivity during this time of transformational change in the way petroleum geoscience information is gathered and transmitted?

The answer would include:

With our Sections, we are looking for new ways to partner with them to generate more geoscience product of both local and global interest.

In our Regions, we are looking for ways to make the membership application process less challenging. Also, the Regions now are more directly involved in the selection of Distinguished Lecturers who will visit their local areas.

With our younger geoscientists, who represent our future, numerous activities are under way to help integrate and connect them with their peers, further expanding the global community that is AAPG.

An example of this initiative that I want to congratulate is the Rocky Mountain Section’s decision to have a group of Young Professionals (YPs) organize its 2014 meeting. To this I say BRAVO!

As I mentioned in my first column (July EXPLORER), we are calling upon each part of the Association – Divisions, committees, Regions and Sections – to assess whether the financial resources they currently are spending are directly aimed at the key strategic goals that together we’re pursuing as AAPG.

Inclusivity and working together are critical parts of actually achieving these strategies, and this is an ongoing process as we work toward ever better focus.


In the near term, it is a pleasure to report there is a lot of movement toward enhanced science delivery within a context of ever-greater inclusivity:

As I write this column we have just finished AAPG Leadership Days, where I had the opportunity to meet a remarkably diverse group of enthusiastic and hard-working geoscientists who brought their unique perspectives with them to help AAPG plot out a course going into the next century of the organization.

Geologists headed for Denver in mid-August to attend the inaugural Unconventional Resources Technology Conference (URTeC), a meeting that combined the talents and scientific expertise of AAPG, SPE and SEG members (see related story and photos, page 46).

This month geoscientists from around the globe will have the pleasure of joining our Latin American colleagues at the AAPG International Conference and Exhibition (ICE) in Cartagena, Colombia.

We also have just launched “Interpretation,” a new journal in partnership with SEG.

Each of the above examples represents key aspects of where AAPG is headed as we aim toward our second century: inclusiveness, integration and partnership.

URTeC, for example, is a collaborative effort between AAPG, SPE and SEG to create a truly integrated technical conference that addresses a wide diversity of challenges within unconventional resource identification, discovery and optimized recovery.

This conference is a major departure from the usual product on the market dealing with dominantly business-related content. By partnering with SPE and SEG, the URTeC conference will bring geoscientists as well as vendors together to discuss the technical state of the art in unconventional resource capture.

This type of integrated partnership offers excellent value to our respective members – and I hope it will be a model for future co-operative joint ventures.

This year’s ICE in Cartagena is another great example of people from many nations coming together to share excellent geoscience insights and advances, as well as best practices in the international oil and gas arena.

A product that AAPG delivers in remarkable abundance – even though we don’t often address it – are the interpersonal connections that come together at meetings like this. ICE provides an avenue for cross-pollination amongst companies and nations that normally would not be sharing with one another.

We’re building communities. And this is a great example of something we don’t often say we do, but is in fact happening a lot because of AAPG – much to the betterment of geoscience and our industry.

The new journal Interpretation is focused on the integration of geological, geophysical and other data into unified subsurface interpretations. SEG originated the concept and AAPG is excited to join them as a partner, to expand dissemination of our science and to better display the integrated efforts of our colleagues as they push forward new frontiers by integrating the excellent vertical resolution geologists have with well logs with the far better horizontal resolution of geophysics.

As most of us know by now, the results can be quite powerful. I am excited about the potential of Interpretation to impact exploration and production around the globe.


The long-arc goal for all of these things is for AAPG to be a global leader in providing geoscience that has relevance and utility in plays around the world.

Consequently, this requires input and contributions from around the world. This in turn implies that we are able to communicate our value proposition to those potential contributors. The student and young professional leaders from all over the globe, along with their more experienced colleagues at AAPG Leadership Days, gave me great confidence that this part of our future is in great hands.

There is much more progress to make, but we are off to a great start!

Of course, there always is room for improvement – please provide your suggestions on how you believe AAPG could be more inclusive to better serve you, your Section/Region, our science and society.

Feel free to “ping” me at lee.krystinik@aapg.org to help us to do more of what we say we do at AAPG!

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Presidents Column

President's Column - Lee Krystinik
Lee Krystinik, AAPG President (2013-14), is a principal with Fossil Creek Resources, Arlington, Texas.

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AAPG Presidents offer thoughts and information about their experiences for the Association. 

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