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The JOI-USSAC Workshop on Future Scientific Drilling was held April 6–8, 1987, at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Woods Hole, Mass. Participants consisted of 56 scientists from nine countries. The general sponsors of the workshop were JOI (the Joint Oceanographic Institutions) and the U.S. Science Advisory Committee (USSAC) of the Ocean Drilling Program (ODP). Non-U.S. participants were sponsored by their respective countries.

The goals of the workshop were to develop thematic suites of drilling objectives in the South Atlantic from global, regional, and topical perspectives and to broaden the base of expertise on which ODP efforts are founded by including scientific input from non-ODP members. The workshop began with a plenary session at which general overviews of various aspects of current South Atlantic research were presented. For most of the workshop, participants separated into one of four working groups for specialized discussion. The topics of these specialized groups were

  • evolution of oceanic lithosphere/tectonics,
  • biostratigraphy,
  • physical stratigrapgy/development of the sedimentary record, and
  • geochemistry.

Once major themes had been developed, each group went on to consider where these objectives could be optimally addressed by drilling and what drilling strategies were necessary for each target area of interest. The workshop ended on the third day with a general session in which the considerations of the four working groups were summarized.