IUSS Stimulus Fund - Global Soil Icon Contest

11th January 2018

Soil is the essence of all terrestrial life, and critical to the delivery of major ecosystem services for human wellbeing and nature conservancy. Yet, the term “soil” does not arouse the much deserved excitement or the “wow” moment among general public, civil societies, policy makers, and others.

Thus, there is a strong need for a global icon that symbolizes the importance of soil as the elixir of terrestrial life, provi der of food, moderator of climate, filter and reservoir of renewable water, habitat for germplasm, inspiration for aesthetical and spiritual activities, source of pharmaceuticals and other materials, archive of planetary and human history, among others.

As an example of an icon, the WWF has been extremely successful in using the panda as an iconic symbol for species conservation. What iconic symbol can represent major ecosystem services of soil, while being simple and easy to be comprehended by the general public? Thus, identifying and promoting such a symbol would be a great leap forward.

Thus, IUSS will award 2,500 USD from the Stimulus Fund for the best Soil Icon.

IUSS would like to invite all soil lovers, be they school children, students, designers, soil scientists or experts of any other profession, to submit their ideas for a Soil Icon. The winning icon will be used during the International Decade of Soils (2015-2024), an initiative launched by the International Union of Soil Sciences to raise awareness of the key roles played by soils in addressing the major resource, environmental, health and social problems humanity is currently facing.

Submissions should comprise a vector-based file with the icon and a short explanation of the idea and the author(s) behind (max. 2 pages). Please send your submissions to iuss@umweltbundesamt.at

Deadline for submissions: 15 March 2018

The IUSS Stimulus Fund Committee shall evaluate all soil icon submissions and make recommendations to the Executive Committee. Final decision will be announced by the IUSS President or delegate within one month after the submission date given above. The results will be announced on the IUSS website. The winner will be informed in writing.
The best 12 icons will be displayed on the IUSS website (one per month).