This paper introduces papers presented at four symposia held during the IX International Palynological Congress, Houston, 1996: New Frontiers and Applications in Palynology, Tephra-linked Pollen Analytical Studies, Forensic Palynology, and Phytoliths and Pollen. These four symposia represent some of the contemporary frontiers of palynology and are placed in context by a brief review of past and emerging frontiers of palynology. From the earliest identification of pollen grains in 1682, to the current and expanding use of the Internet and the World Wide Web, palynologists have been exploring and expanding the frontiers of their discipline. This paper briefly reviews the path of that expansion, identifying some of the seminal and emerging landmarks: the coining of the term `palynology', the application of sophisticated and powerful computer-based statistical and numerical analysis, and the expansion of palynology both in terms of the types of palynomorphs used and the applications to which palynology is being put. These themes are illustrated by examples of the 30 papers presented in the four Symposia.
Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology home page available at www.elsevier.com/locate/revpalbo
Publisher's version of article available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0034-6667(98)00020-7