33 No. 6
With the end of the year fast approaching, this editorial must be on IYC 2011 . . . for many of us, nothing in recent weeks and recent months has taken more time and energy. And soon, in just a few weeks, a Closing Ceremony will take place in Brussels, and from that point on, we will ask ourselves “What now?”
Thousands of volunteers worldwide have made IYC 2011 a tangible year-long celebration with thousands of activities and events. What if all this was to happen again in 2012? Perhaps IYC 2011 can be the spark, the impulse, or the excuse, to get out and establish a tradition of celebrating Chemistry as we never dared before. For many, IYC was the kick-off to organize science fairs, shows, exhibitions, animations, competitions—you name it—an activity that made Chemistry the star, the actor in the spot light. What a legacy it would be for IYC if all the volunteers who took part in celebrating Chemistry in 2011 were to plan to celebrate again in 2012 and regularly there after.
Before IYC 2011, there was no way to imagine how the year would shape up. But today, we have some ideas. A huge resource that has emerged and is now at our disposal is chemistry2011.org. Obviously, not all of the IYC is on the IYC website. IUPAC, which started it all with UNESCO by getting the UN to recognize IYC 2011, is committed to keeping the website as a resource available to all.
Chemistry2011.org was planned to publicize IYC 2011, to act as a clearinghouse for all activities happening under the umbrella of IYC, and encourage international participation. It has accomplished all of these goals. Take a casual browse, and you can see for yourself. As of 1 October, the site has recorded just over 8200 contacts from more than 160 countries, more than 2000 activities and events, and some 300 additional ideas. Since January 2011, the site has attracted an average of 1600 visits per day. Today, more than 50 percent of the site traffic is directed from search engines, 30 percent is from referring sites, and the difference from direct traffic, which is a good indicator that folks can easily find IYC.
To make the most of the website and to make it a legacy of IYC, we should all log in again, update the activities that are recorded and supplement that information with links to articles and reports that might have been posted here and there, and add pictures and comments. The IYC website is a gold mine of ideas and contacts, testimony that chemists worldwide are passionate about what they do. As a web 2.0 resource, it is up to us as part of the IYC network to enrich the site’s content. So, let’s not wait until the end of the year to tackle this task, log in now to chemistry2011.org.
last modified 8 November 2011.
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