First Circular

December 2015

The University of Pennsylvania and the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology have the honor and pleasure to invite you to the 62nd Rencontre Assyriologique Internationale that will take place in Philadelphia, United States of America, on July 11–15, 2016. This will be the fifth time that the Rencontre has met in the United States and the second time in Philadelphia; the 35th Rencontre was held here in 1988, also on July 11–15.

The theme of the Philadelphia Rencontre is “Ur in the Twenty-First Century CE.” The last time the conference met in Philadelphia the theme was “Nippur, the Holy City of the Sumerians,” commemorating the Penn Museum’s excavations at Nippur in the late nineteenth century. The organizers of the 2016 meeting felt that this one should recognize the Penn Museum’s involvement with the excavations at Ur in the early twentieth century and with the Ur Digitization Project, an on-going co-operative project of the British Museum, Iraq Museum and Penn Museum. The theme can be approached from textual, historical, archaeological and art historical perspectives, and deal with Ur from the late prehistoric period to the Hellenistic period, as well as modern approaches to the study of ancient materials from Ur.

In addition to contributions on the main theme, we welcome papers and posters on current research in philology, history, archaeology and art history. These, however, will not be included in the proceedings of the congress, which will be solely dedicated to papers dealing with Ur and be published by Eisenbrauns. There will also be time for workshops, where people sharing a common interest can meet in parallel sessions. Workshops are intended for existing workgroups, special fields or new initiatives. A workshop must include a minimum of four related presentations. Proposals for topics, including a provisional list of contributions or participants, must be submitted to the organizing committee by no later than February 1, 2016. Eisenbrauns may publish work­shop proceedings as distinct volumes; the responsibility for publication will lie with the organizers of the workshop.

The papers of all sessions will last no more than 20 minutes, with a further 10 minutes for discussion. We kindly ask the participants to deliver their papers in English, French or German. There will be no more than three to four parallel sessions. If too many papers are offered we will make a selection. In order to make such decisions, we ask for informative abstracts of 200–400 words by no later than May 1, 2016. Since the abstracts will be distributed in printed form, we recommend that non-native speakers have their text proofread. Participants of a workshop will submit their abstract directly to the organizers of their workshop, who will pass on the information to the organizing committee once the program of their workshop is final and no later than May 1, 2016.

The registration fees will be:

  1. Registrations before March 31, 2016 [currently available]
    • IAA member: $150
    • IAA-member, student: $70
    • IAA member’s guest/accompanying person: $100
    • non-IAA member: $200
    • non-IAA member, student: $100
    • non-IAA member’s guest/accompanying person: $100
    • Publisher: $100
  2. Registrations April 1, 2016 on: [currently not available]
    • IAA member: $200
    • IAA-member, student: $80
    • IAA member’s guest/accompanying person: $110
    • non-IAA member: $225
    • non-IAA member, student: $110
    • non-IAA member’s guest/accompanying person: $110
    • Publisher: $125

For conference registration, the submission of proposed papers, proposed workshops and abstracts, see the section “Registration” at the conference website. Information on the venues, travel and accommodation is provided under the section “General Information.”

The conference website may be found at

The second circular is planned for February 2016. Should you have any questions in the meantime, please do not hesitate to contact us.

We look forward to receiving you in Philadelphia


Members of the Organizing Committee

G. Frame, Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilization; chair of the Organizing Committee
J. Jeffers, Royal Inscriptions of the Neo-Assyrian Period project
H. Pittman, Department of the History of Art
L. Ristvet, Department of Anthropology
S. Tinney, Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations
R. Zettler, Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations




Grant Frame: