Faced with the unprecedented collapse of the upstream oil and gas industry in 2015 and 2016, unconventional resource players (operators, service companies, data and software providers, consultants, etc.) have kept a laser focus on improving operational efficiency and financial return. Technology advancements are the foundation for efficiencies, so it was not surprising, now that we are officially in a positive swing of the petroleum economic cycle, that the 2018 Unconventional Resources Technology Conference (URTeC) had its largest ever attendance of 6023. Part of that was due to the conference taking place in Houston with its concentration of oil-and-gas-related companies, which resulted in 2400 attendees using exhibition guest passes. But it also was due to the fact that the founding societies — SEG, the American Associate of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG), and the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) — have successfully kept URTeC focused on integrated, applications-oriented content. As a result, this year's URTeC had 14 themes that were split into 64 sessions, a number that also included several forums and special sessions, in which more than 300 technical papers were presented.

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