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Vol. 32 No. 4
July-August 2010

Conference Call | Reports from recent conferences and symposia 
See also www.iupac.org/indexes/Conferences

IUPAC–ACS Collaboration Summit

by Katherine Bowman and Francisco Gomez

The Second IUPAC–ACS Collaboration Summit was convened on 21 March 2010 during the American Chemical Society (ACS) meeting in San Francisco, California, USA, under the auspices of IUPAC, ACS, and the U.S. National Academies (through its role as the U.S. adhering member to IUPAC). The meeting—attended by approximately 40 representatives of IUPAC and ACS technical divisions and committees—built on the success of an inaugural collaboration event held on 15 August 2009 in Washington, D.C. While the previous summit focused on developing broad awareness of the activities and interests of participating IUPAC and ACS groups, the second summit focused on generating concrete collaborative ideas to be taken forward by these groups. The International Year of Chemistry (IYC) 2011 provided a framework for these plans, particularly potential outreach events and symposia to be held at the December 2010 Pacfichem meeting in Hawaii and the August 2011 IUPAC Congress in Puerto Rico.

Overview of the Meeting
The summit was moderated by Bryan Henry, past president of IUPAC and a member of the ACS International Activities Committee. Welcome remarks were given by David Black, IUPAC secretary general, and Joseph Francisco, ACS president and vice chair of the U.S. National Committee for IUPAC, who challenged participants to explore opportunities that reached across disciplinary and divisional boundaries. A brief review of the celebration and goals of IYC 2011 followed these welcomes. Participants also discussed background information on Pacifichem 2010 and the 2011 IUPAC Congress, with the focus on these upcoming events as targets for potential collaborative division activities. Participants discussed potential funding opportunities for IUPAC–ACS divisions wanting to initiate collaborative projects. These included providing seed money through IUPAC–ACS Mini Planning Awards and the IUPAC project system. In addition, it was announced that ACS has made three Challenge Grants available for symposia that will be held during the Puerto Rico Congress.

An example of the type of collaborative symposium that could be organized was presented to the group by Hessy Taft, who is currently preparing a session on “Advances in Alternative Energy” with likely co-sponsorship from ACS divisions such as Industrial and Engineering Chemistry and Environmental Chemistry. The symposium will feature talks on key forms of energy including wind, solar, hydrogen, and biofuels, as well as how information on alternative energy can be incorporated into the K–12 curriculum.

The second half of the meeting allowed participants to brainstorm ideas for events and symposia; these ideas were further discussed and refined in smaller breakout groups. For each idea, groups were asked to consider a plan of action including next steps, timelines, metrics, and who would carry out the needed tasks. The small groups reported their progress back to the full meeting and submitted an informal written report. The meeting concluded with remarks by Judith Benham, chair of the ACS International Activities Committee, who expressed her thanks for the productive discussions and her hope that IUPAC and ACS would continue to foster these valuable collaborative relationships.

Proposed Collaborative Events and Symposia
An important component of the summit was the generation of potential collaborative activities. Initial ideas were generated in a group brainstorming session, followed by six breakout discussion groups to create initial plans of action for who will be involved and how these proposals will be carried forward. The topics selected for discussion included potential outreach events to students as well as IUPAC Congress symposia.

Outreach Events
1. Pre-IYC launch events at Pacifichem on the theme of water
2. Student/teacher outreach event at the 2011 IUPAC Congress

IUPAC Congress Symposia
3. Contributions of Crystallography to Structure-Based Drug Discovery
4.
Worldwide Research and Development in Materials Chemistry
5.
Global Water Quality Issues
6.
Women in Science Symposium + Marie Curie Reenactment
7.
Organic Chemical Terminology
8.
Chemical Safety and Security

Brief Overviews of Proposed Events and Plans

Outreach: Pre-IYC Launch at Pacifichem
Group leader: Peter Mahaffy, IUPAC Committee on Chemistry Education

  • Several activities will focus on advertising IYC and the planned program of IYC Global Water Experiments
  • Inclusion in the Pacifichem opening ceremonies of a well-known water quality scientist to provide an introduction to global water issues, their connection to chemistry, and the program of global experiments on “Water: A Chemical Solution”
  • A display and demonstration on the global water experiments program at the IUPAC exhibition booth
    Organization of a public event in Hawaii, perhaps at the beach, to announce IYC and demonstrate the Global Water Experiments
  • A link with the YouTube video project of ACS’ Younger Chemists Committee (YCC) and Women Chemists Committee (WCC), which will be ready to show at Pacifichem

Potential partners: ACS and IUPAC divisions/committees in environmental chemistry, agricultural and food chemistry, CHED, Chemrawn, IUPAC IYC Management Committee, ACS International Activities Committee, YCC, WCC, and others

Outreach: Student/Teacher Event at IUPAC Congress
Group leader: Ram Lamba, IUPAC Bureau and IUPAC Committee on Chemistry Education

The event “Chemistry in Our Lives: A Chat with Nobel Laureates” will be organized for middle school and high school teachers and students. The activity will also include the development of interactive materials in English and Spanish for the teachers and students, such as a lesson plan discussing the roles of chemistry, Marie Curie, and IYC.

Potential partners: ACS divisions/committees on chemistry education, local sections, IYC management committee, Congress organizing committee, teachers associations, and others

Symposium: Contributions of Crystallography to Structure-Based Drug Discovery
Group leaders: Katherine Kantardjieff, U.S. National Committee for Crystallography, and Mukund Chorghade, IUPAC Division on Chemistry and Human Health

This one-day symposium will focus on neglected and orphan diseases. It will feature a series of coordinated talks addressing both structure solution/description and the application of structure in organic/medicinal/clinical aspects.

Potential partners: ACS Division of Medicinal Chemistry, Small Chemical Business Division, and partner societies like ACA, AsCA, ECA, and AAAS

Symposium: Worldwide Research and Development in Materials Chemistry
Group leader: Len Interrante, IUPAC Interdivisional Subcommittee on Materials Chemistry

This symposium will be led by the IUPAC Interdivisional Subcommittee on Materials Chemistry, with assistance from relevant ACS divisions and other chemical society partners. It will include a session of talks followed by a panel discussion/workshop on the needs and opportunities for materials chemistry in science and technology.

Potential partners: ACS divisions such as PHYS, PMSE, INORG, CATAL, COLL, ENVR, I&EC, and others and societies such as the U.K. Royal Society of Chemistry and the European Association for Chemical and Molecular Sciences (EuCheMS)

Symposium: Global Water Quality Issues
Group leader: Sut Ahuja, ACS Divisions of Analytical and Environmental Chemistry

This symposium series will include four topical sessions on aspects of water quality including environmental, analytical measurement, impact on development and agriculture, and industrial issues. The sessions will feature both invited overview talks as well as contributed papers.

Potential partners: IUPAC groups in analytical and environmental chemistry, IUPAC Committee on Chemistry and Industry (COCI), ACS Division of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, industrial and engineering chemistry, corporation associates, and Global Innovation Imperatives

Symposium: Women in Science Symposium + Marie Curie Reenactment
Group leader: Ingrid Montes, Gabriel Infante, and Janet Bryant

This proposed project would include the following activities:
series of 12 online profiles over the course of a year (2011): one woman per month to be highlighted
Eminent Scientists Symposium (Puerto Rico)
Marie Curie Reenactment (Puerto Rico)

Potential partners: ACS Women Chemists Committee, Puerto Rico Section, Younger Chemists Committee, Committee on Minority Affairs, International Activities Committee

Two additional symposia were proposed for the 2011 IUPAC Congress program: Organic Chemical Terminology (leaders: Victor Snieckus, ACS Division of Organic Chemistry and Leiv Sydnes, IUPAC Committee on Chemistry Research Applied to World Needs [Chemrawn]) and Chemical Safety and Security (Leader: Mark Cesa, COCI). Although these two symposia were not discussed in detail during the second summit, the group welcomed further development of these ideas.

The ACS’s YCC is also planning a YouTube collaboration with the European Youn Chemists Network of EuCheMS called the “World of Chemistry”: three-minute shorts featuring young chemists from different countries who discuss, in their native language, what chemistry means to them. The YCC also is working on expanding the international exchange program that exists between the Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker (i.e. the german chemical society) and Northeastern Section of the American Chemical Society to other European Union chemical societies and the ACS (this initiative is for more than 2011, but likely will start then).

Conclusion
Work on these proposals will begin immediately in order to meet the deadlines for the ACS Challenge Grants, to allow enough time to seek alternative sources of funding, and to allow enough time to ensure the success of the projects. An IUPAC/ACS Summit Discussion Forum will be created on the ACS Network. All participants will be invited to join and will be encouraged to share their progress, exchange ideas, and collaborate with each other. A follow-up-meeting take place in August 2010 at the ACS National Meeting in Boston, Massachusetts, USA, that will focus on progress made on the specific proposals.

The meeting was supported by grant CHE-0838627 from the National Science Foundation to IUPAC.

Katherine Bowman was, at the time of the meeting, the U.S. representative to IUPAC for the National Academy of Sciences (that position is currently held by Lois Peterson <LPeterson@nas.edu>. Francisco Gomez <F_Gomez@acs.org> is Global Alliances & Partnerships Manager for the ACS Office of International Activities.


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