DRT 2017 - 21st International Conference on Deformation Mechanisms, Rheology and Tectonics

DRT 2017 - 21st International Conference on Deformation Mechanisms, Rheology and Tectonics

The Deformation Mechanisms, Rheology and Tectonics (DRT) conference is a biennial international meeting that has been running for 40 years, organised and hosted by academic staff from different European universities. DRT is one of the main world forums for presenting and discussing research in the fields of rock deformation, structural geology, rheology, tectonics, microstructures, rock physics and interactions between deformation and metamorphic/diagenetic reactions.

DRT 2017 will be hosted at the Eden Court Theatre in Inverness (Scotland), and it is organised by the Tectonics group of the University of Aberdeen. This 21st edition will keep the tradition of DRT focusing on the study of the deformation behaviour, rheology of minerals, rocks and materials, and tectonics. At the same time, we would like to emphasize discussions on the geophysical expression of deformation processes, and will include a component of applied structural geology.

Looking forward to seeing you in Inverness!

DRT 2019

During DRT 2017 in Inverness the participants will choose the institution and country that will host DRT 2019. We encourage any institution that is interested in taking on this task to submit an expression of interest to e.gomez-rivas@abdn.ac.uk in advance of DRT 2017.


Old documents:


Key Dates

Conference programme 2017

Sunday 30th April: Pre-conference excursions and icebreaker party
Monday 1st May: Oral and poster sessions
Tuesday 2nd May: One-day mid-conference excursion open for all delegates
Wednesday 3rd May: Oral and poster sessions
Thursday 4th May: Oral and poster sessions, business meeting and conference dinner
Friday 5th to Sunday 7th May: Post-conference fieldtrip


This meeting will keep the tradition of DRT, focusing on the study of the deformation behaviour, rheology of minerals, rocks and materials, and tectonics.

For this edition we aim to also emphasise discussions on the geophysical expression of deformation processes, and will include a component of applied structural geology.

We aim to attract participants doing research on all scales of field, experimental and numerical studies of rock deformation, tectonics, geodynamics, rheology and material science.

Sessions will be organised around the following themes:

  • Rheology and deformation mechanisms 
  • Continental tectonics and mountain building: from deep to shallow
  • 3D geometry and kinematics of tectonic structures. Virtual outcrop modelling. Uncertainty in geologic models
  • Rock mechanics and physics of fractured rocks
  • Geophysical signatures of deformation processes in the crust and mantle
  • Seismic interpretation of subsurface structures
  • Interaction between tectonics and surface processes. Neotectonics
  • Interplay between fluid flow, deformation and mineral reactions
  • Structural geology, tectonics and geophysics for exploration and production of energy resources

North Coast

Keynote Speakers
Travel Grants

We offer 5 travel grants of £500 to early career researchers and to participants from developing countries. These grants are funded by TecTask, the Tectonics and Structural Geology division of the International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS).

Delegates who wish to apply for a travel grant should first register for the conference, and then submit their application by email to drt2017@abdn.ac.uk, no later than 31st January 2017.

The applicants should send a letter of motivation explaining (i) how their participation in the DRT is going to benefit them as scientists and impact their career and (ii) how the TecTask support would make a difference for their participation in the conference. The letter of motivation should fit in a single A4 with a font size of 12.

Applications will not be considered if the candidate has not registered for the conference first. The scientific committee will evaluate all the proposals and will communicate the decision to the applicants by mid February.

After the conference, the grantees will need to submit a personal report of the meeting, including their description of how they benefitted from the meeting, and therefore from the TecTask support, and also three ideas for TecTask to pursue to promote and achieve its objectives. These reports will be accessible through the TecTask webpage, and must be as interesting and enthusing as possible.

Please note that the grants will only be paid after the conference, and once the grantees have submitted their reports.

Registration and Abstract Submission

Abstract submission

Abstracts will be submitted to drt2017@abdn.ac.uk no latter than Wednesday 8th February 2017.

Please download the abstract instructions and template.


Registration for the conference and dinner closed on Wednesday 15th March 2017. Abstract submission and registration for the conference fieldtrips closed on 15th February 2017.

Registration includes access to the oral and poster sessions, coffee breaks, lunches, and transportation during the mid-conference excursion to the NW Highlands Geopark.

Please note that registration fees are non-refundable, so please ensure that you have up-to-date travel insurance before you register.

Registration for the conference is restricted to 140 participants. We operate a first-come first-served policy, also for pre and post-conference field excursions.

IMPORTANT: Note that you must be a student at the time of the event to qualify for the student discount.

Please send a scanned proof of status (student ID card, enrolment certificate, etc.) to drt2017@abdn.ac.uk. Without this, you won’t qualify for the student rate.

Type Description

Early bird

before 19th Dec


after 19th Dec

Regular Fees for standard delegates £250 £300
Student Fees for MSc or PhD students (please note that a proof of status is required) £150 £200
Abstract Processing Charge This will cover the costs of poster boards and projection equipment £10/abstract £10/abstract
Conference dinner Dinner on 4th May 2017 at the Mercure Hotel, including reception £50 £50 
Pre-conference excursions Sunday 30th April. Includes transportation £25  
Deposit for post-conference fieltrip Friday 5th – Sunday 7th May. Includes accommodation and transportation. The final price will be £330-£400. £250



Location and Travel Information


Inverness is located in the Scottish Highlands. It is at a driving distance from key outcrops that expose major thrust contacts and mylonites in the Moine thrust belt, imbricate thrust systems and high-grade syn-magmatic shear zones.

The conference will take place at the Eden Court Theatre:

There are connecting flights to Inverness from Manchester, London and Amsterdam. Inverness is well connected by train to Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and London.

Organisers and Contact details

If you would like more information about the conference, or have inquiries relating to abstract submission, registration and special needs, please send an email to drt2017@abdn.ac.uk.

Organising Committee

All the members of the Organising Committee are staff of the Department of Geology and Petroleum Geology of the University of Aberdeen:

Scientific Committee

The scientific committee is composed of the members of the organising committee and an external advisory board, whose members are:

Janos Urai RWTH University of Aachen, Germany
John Wheeler University of Liverpool, UK
Susanne Buiter Geological Survey of Norway, Norway
Giorgio Pennacchioni University of Padova, Italy
Lucie Tajcmanova ETH Zürich, Switzerland
Albert Griera Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain
Christie Rowe McGill University, Canada
Rick Law Virginia Tech, USA
Stephen Laubach The University of Texas at Austin, USA
History of DRT

(by Manuel Sintubin)

In 1976 Henk Zwart, Richard Lisle, Gordon Lister and Paul Williams organised a meeting at the Geologisch en Mineralogisch Instituut der Rijksuniversiteit Leiden (The Netherlands) on Fabrics, Microtextures and Microtectonics. Their aim was to ‘bring together as many as possible of the people active in this field; not only geologists but also material scientists from other disciplines’ (Lister et al., 1977). In 1985, at the 5th meeting in Utrecht (The Netherlands) a biannual tradition has been installed. Eversince, the meeting is hosted every two years by a different European university. In 1999, at the 12th meeting in Neustadt an der Weinstrasse (Germany), the conference series got its brand name ‘Deformation mechanisms, Rheology and Tectonics’ (Dresen & Handy, 2011) or DRT.

The DRT meetings are devoted to the study of deformation behaviour and rheology of minerals, rocks and materials. Dialogue is encouraged on all scales of field, experimental and theoretical studies of rock deformation. DRT aims to provide the main forum in Europe where field geologists, experimentalists and modellers could debate the problems and questions posed by natural structures and microstructures (Schmid et al. 1999).

Past DRT meetings were held at:

1.  1976 – Leiden, The Netherlands
2.  1979 – Barcelona, Spain
3.  1981 – Göttingen, Germany
4.  1982 – Zürich, Switzerland
5.  1985 – Utrecht, The Netherlands
6.  1987 – Uppsala, Sweden
7.  1989 – Leeds, U.K.
8.  1991 – Montpellier, France
9.  1993 – Graz, Austria
10. 1995 – Prague, Czech Republic
11. 1997 – Basel, Switzerland
12. 1999 – Neustadt an der Weinstrasse, Germany
13. 2001 – Noordwijkerhout, The Netherlands
14. 2003 – Saint Malo, France
15. 2005 – Zürich, Switzerland
16. 2007 – Milano, Italy
17. 2009 – Liverpool-Manchester, U.K.
18. 2011 – Oviedo, Spain
19. 2013 – Leuven, Belgium
20. 2015 - Aachen, Germany


IUGS Tectask

Tectonic Studies Group 

Glencoul Thrust