Dear colleagues,

we have the pleasure to announce the XV International Symposium on Biological Control of Weeds taking place from

26-31 August 2018, Engelberg, Switzerland

You might not be aware that the first International Symposium on Biological Control of Weeds (ISBCW) was organized in 1969 by CABI Switzerland (back then the European Station of the Commonwealth Institute of Biological Control) in Delémont, Switzerland. Twenty scientists representing 15 institutes and organizations from 8 countries participated.

Participants of the first Symposium on Biological Control of Weeds at CABI in Delémont, Switzerland in 1969

Since then, the Symposium has been continuously growing to between 200 and 250 participants, representing over 100 organisations from up to 30 different countries with an improved gender balance. In 2018, for the XV ISBCW, it’s back to the roots! Not back to Delémont, since we would not have a venue large enough to welcome so many people, but to the scenic town of Engelberg in the Swiss Alps.

The XV ISBCW is aiming to bring together practitioners, scientists and regulators working in the field of weed biological control to share their experiences, network, foster collaborations, and discuss emerging issues that affect invasive plant management. This field of research touches on several diverse aspects, such as insect and pathogen-plant interactions, evolutionary processes, socio-economics and international regulations. Special emphasize during the upcoming Symposium will be placed on presenting and discussing new methods to determine the efficacy, environmental safety and predictability of biological control, including the role of chemical ecology, modelling, evolutionary processes, and the –omics field, with the general aim to advance the science and success of weed biocontrol.

Although biological control of weeds has been practiced since over 100 years, it is still a much neglected tool in managing alien invasive weeds in Europe. Taking advantage of the fact that the XV ISBCW will take place in Switzerland, we will encourage presentations addressing the specific opportunities and constraints that classical biological control of weeds faces in Europe.

There will also be a session organised by the International Bioherbicide Group, which will cover recent developments in the science and commercialisation of plant pathogens and their metabolites as biological herbicides.
Overall, we will have 10 different scientific sessions. The scientific committee is comprised of 15 scientists from seven different entities (for details see under "Contact") .

Specific attention will be placed on a good gender representation, not only in terms of equity of male and female presenters, but we will also encourage the participation of students and young scientists by offering reduced registration rates and support from IOBC, and favour presenters from lower income countries by providing support for travel and accommodation.

Finally, we are looking forward to hosting a stimulating conference and hope that you will be able to participate. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact our conference office at:

International Symposium
on Biological Control of Weeds
Switzerland, 26-31 August 2018