It is a great honour and pleasure to invite you to the 16th International Conference on Soil Micromorphology (ICoSM) in Kraków, Poland in 2020. The micromorphological conference was organized in Poland last in 1969 in Wrocław by Prof. S. Kowaliński and his team. Therefore, we would be delighted to welcome everyone ever involved in soil micromorphology in Poland in the 51 years since that time.

Poland has a long tradition of using micromorphological methods to study soils. The beginning of Polish soil micromorphology dates back to early 1960s. Wrocław is the cradle of that branch of soil science in Poland. The pioneers of Polish soil micromorphology were B. Jabłoński, S. Kowaliński, and A. Bogda. However, micromorphological studies were then continued by J. Drozd, М. Licznar, S.E. Licznar, and J. Weber until 1980s. In 1970s, soil micromorphological studies began to be developed in other academic centres in Poland, e.g. in Kraków (S. Zasoński, J. Tokaj, J. Niemyska-Łukaszuk) and Warsaw (K. Konecka-Betley, A. Mazurek, Z. Zagórski). Since early 1960s until 1990s, soil micromorphology was used in examination of soil genesis, physical properties, soil organic matter as well as paleosols.

Currently, soil micromorphology studies are conducted by a group of scientists in a few research centres, e.g. in Kraków (Jagiellonian University: W. Szymański, M. Drewnik, M. Żyła, M. Gus; University of Agriculture: R. Mazurek, K. Ciarkowska, J. Kowalska, T. Zaleski, H. Kozak), Lublin (Maria Curie-Skłodowska University: P. Mroczek, M. Łanczont), Toruń (Nicolaus Copernicus University: M. Jankowski, M. Świtoniak), Warsaw (Warsaw University of Life Sciences: Z. Zagórski, J. Chojnicki, D. Kaczorek, Ł. Uzarowicz; University of Warsaw: B. Woronko), and Wrocław (Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences: J. Waroszewski). Topics of these studies are diverse, however they focus mainly on examination of genesis and evolution of soils and sediments (soils developed from Fe-rich parent materials, rendzina soils developed from limestones and gypsum, Retisols, frost-affected soils, Technosols, iron bog ores), genesis of lamellae in soils, phytolites in soils, ultramorphology of quartz grains as well as investigation of polygenetic soil and paleosols.

One can observe growing interest in soil micromorphology nowadays in Poland. Therefore, development of that branch of soil science in Poland can be expected in the coming years.

We would like to thank everyone who inspired us to organize the ICoSM 2020 in Poland. We will do our best to prepare the conference as well as possible.

We look forward to welcoming you in Kraków!