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Episodes 2009; 32(3): 194-207

Published online September 1, 2009


Copyright © International Union of Geological Sciences.

The 20th International Geological Congress, Mexico (1956)

Luis Felipe Mazadiego Martínez*, Octavio Puche Riart* English translation by John Stevenson**

*Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingenieros de Minas. Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. Email: luisfelipe.mazadiego@upm.es; octavio.puche@upm.es
** The University of New South Wales

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The 20th International Geological Congress (IGC), held in Mexico in 1956, took place at a crucial time as the demand for raw materials increased significantly after the Second World War. The search for mineral resources provided a stimulus for the development of geology and its applied branches, geophysics, geochemistry, etc. Also, the foundations were being laid for a new global geological model, plate tectonics, which burst onto the scene in the sixties. The Congress had the largest attendance up to that time. Many of its sessions focused on prospecting for mineral deposits and drilling for oil and gas.