About the IAOS

The International Association for Obsidian Studies (IAOS) was formed in 1989 to provide a forum for obsidian researchers throughout the world. Major interest areas of the IAOS include obsidian hydration dating, obsidian characterization ("sourcing"), geoarchaeological obsidian studies, obsidian and lithic technology, and the prehistoric procurement and utilization of obsidian. In addition to disseminating information about advances in obsidian research to archaeologists and other interested parties, the IAOS was also established to:

  • Develop standards for analytical procedures to ensure interlaboratory comparability.
  • Develop standards for recording and reporting obsidian hydration and characterization results.
  • Provide technical support in the form of training and workshops for those wanting to develop expertise in the field.
  • Provide a central source of information about the analytical capabilities of various laboratories and institutions and about recent advances in obsidian studies.


You can apply for IAOS membership in one of four categories:

  • Student Membership ($10.00 per year or free with submission of paper to newsletter and copy of current student identification)
  • Regular Membership ($20.00 per year)
  • Institutional Membership ($50.00 per year)
  • Lifetime Membership ($200.00)

Student members are those who are currently enrolled as a full or part-time student. Student benefits are the same as those of regular members.

Regular members are individuals or institutions who are interested in obsidian studies and who support the overall objectives of the IAOS. Regular members will receive the regular IAOS Bulletin, general mailings, announcements of meetings and conferences, and any software or papers that are distributed by the IAOS for the year. Regular members are entitled to attend and vote in the Annual Meeting.

Institutional members are those individuals, facilities, libraries, and institutions who are active in obsidian studies and who wish to participate in interlaboratory comparisons and standardization. Institutional members may receive assistance from, or collaborate with, other institutional members. They will also receive all other mailings sent to regular members.

Lifetime members receive all the benefits and privileges of Regular Members, but in perpetuum, for as long as they or the IAOS shall last.

Membership fees may be reduced and/or waived in cases of financial hardship or difficulty in paying in foreign currency. Please complete the form and return to the Secretary with a short explanation regarding the lack of payment.

Because membership fees are very low, the IAOS asks that all payments be made in U. S. dollars in international money orders or checks payable to a bank with a U. S. branch. Domestic or international payments may also be made through PAYPAL.

If you would like to join the IAOS, please proceed to the PayPal Payment Page or mail in the membership application and payment to the IAOS Secretary-Treasurer:

International Association for Obsidian Studies (IAOS)
Lucas Martindale Johnson,
c/o Far Western Anthropological Research Group
1180 Center Point Drive, Suite 100
Henderson, NV 89074


Regular IAOS membership entitles you to the following:

  • First access to regular issues of the IAOS Bulletin - articles, announcements, abstracts, events, news, reviews
  • A special easy to search edition of the IAOS Bulletin in which all issues have been compiled as a single PDF
  • Access to any available "Members Only" website features
  • Special price discounts on selected major obsidian-related publications
  • IAOS general mailings, announcements, software, and papers
  • A vote and an invitation to the Annual IAOS Meetings
  • A chance to join the worldwide network of obsidian researchers
Membership Application Form


Last Updated: 02/01/2021
International Association for Obsidian Studies