The International Symposium on Recent Investigations in the Zone of Aeration (RIZA) was organized by the Institute for Hydrogeology and Hydrochemistry of the Technical University of Munich and held October 1–5, 1984, in the lecture halls of the Grosshadern Klinik in Munich, Federal Republic of Germany (FRG). P. Udluft, B. Merkel, and K.-H. Prüsl, all of the university, were responsible for the organization of the symposium, which was under the patronage of K.-E. Quentin. There were over 200 participants from 22 different countries, among them Australia, Canada, China, India, and the United States. The topics of the symposium were the physical, chemical, and microbiological processes in the unsaturated zone, the region between the surface and the groundwater level. Here a number of complex processes occur that on the one hand are of natural origin and on the other hand are influenced by human activities in a number of ways.