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Vol. 32 No. 5
September-October 2010

The Project Place | Information about new, current, and complete IUPAC projects and related initiatives.
See also www.iupac.org/projects

Postgraduate Course in Polymer Science

The Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic in Prague, Czech Republic, with its more than 100 scientists and a total staff of about 250, is among the largest laboratories devoted to basic research in polymer science worldwide. For 50 years, the Institute has offered postgraduate studies. In the mid-1990s, the Institute launched the Postgraduate Course in Polymer Science with the mission to enable young university graduates and Ph.D.s from countries with limited research facilities to acquire knowledge on recent advances in polymer science and professional skills needed for promotion of polymer science in their home countries. The course was granted UNESCO sponsorship from the beginning, with IUPAC adding its sponsorship soon afterwards. The course has gained international recognition as a most commendable educational activity in the IUPAC Polymer Division and was awarded the IUPAC-Samsung Education Prize for 2005 (see www.iupac.org/publications/ci/2005/2706/iw1_samsung.html).

So far, 13 iterations of the course have been completed, with the 14th in progress and the 15th starting in October 2010. Each course lasts 10 months and comprises about 50 hours of lectures in modern polymer science and experimental work on research projects under the supervision of senior scientists of the Institute. The results of the research are published in international technical journals and presented at meetings. As of 1 January 2010, the cumulative results of the Course held so far are as follows: 116 graduates, 152 papers published in international journals, and 201 communications at international meetings. The papers co-authored by the course graduates have been cited more than 2000 times. For a list of papers, see <www.imc.cas.cz/unesco/papersUI.html>.

The graduates of the 13 completed courses, students in the current course, and those admitted to the 15th course have been from the following 22 countries: Algeria, Bangladesh, Brazil, Bulgaria, China, Hungary, India, Iran, Kazakhstan, Macedonia, Mexico, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, South Africa, Spain, Ukraine, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, and Vietnam.

Follow-up with graduates has shown that the Course has been very helpful for professional promotion of the graduates in their home countries. Cooperation with a number of alumni continues through joint projects with their home laboratories.

The 15th Postgraduate Course in Polymer Science will be one of the contributions of the Czech Republic to the International Year of Chemistry 2011.

For more information contact the task group chair Pavel Kratochvíl
<krat@imc.cas.cz>.

www.iupac.org/web/ins/2010-015-1-400


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