International Year of Chemistry
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The International Year of Chemistry 2011 (IYC 2011) is a worldwide celebration of the achievements of chemistry and its contributions to the well-being of humankind. Under the unifying theme “Chemistry—our life, our future,” IYC 2011 will offer a range of interactive, entertaining, and educational activities for all ages. The Year of Chemistry is intended to reach across the globe, with opportunities for public participation at the local, regional, and national level.

The goals of IYC2011 are to increase the public appreciation of chemistry in meeting world needs, to encourage interest in chemistry among young people, and to generate enthusiasm for the creative future of chemistry. The year 2011 will coincide with the 100th anniversary of the Nobel Prize awarded to Madame Marie Curie—an opportunity to celebrate the contributions of women to science. The year will also be the 100th anniversary of the founding of the International Association of Chemical Societies, providing a chance to highlight the benefits of international scientific collaboration.

IYC 2011 events will emphasize that chemistry is a creative science essential for sustainability and improvements to our way of life. Activities, such as lectures, exhibits, and hands-on experiments, will explore how chemical research is critical for solving our most vexing global problems involving food, water, health, energy, transportation, and more.

In addition, the Year of Chemistry will help enhance international cooperation by serving as a focal point or information source for activities by national chemical societies, educational institutions, industry, governmental, and non-governmental organizations.

For more information about the goals, activities, administration, and timeline of IYC 2011, please download the IYC Prospectus.

The IYC 2011 is an initiative of IUPAC, the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry, and of UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. It involves chemical societies, academies, and institutions worldwide, and relies on individual initiatives to organize local and regional activities.

You can participate, too.

The idea for an international year was first discussed in 2006, during the April meeting of IUPAC Executive Committee. Following that meeting, an IUPAC task group developed a plan to secure the designation by UNESCO of an International Year of Chemistry. That project (IUPAC project 2007-011-1-050) was successfully completed when in April 2008, and the Executive Board of UNESCO, endorsed the proposal for proclamation by the United Nations of 2011 as an International Year of Chemistry (IYC).

The International Year of Chemistry – 2011 will:

  • Improve the understanding and appreciation of chemistry by the public.
  • Enhance international cooperation by serving as a focal point or information source for activities by national chemical societies, educational institutions, industry, governmental and non-governmental organizations.
  • Promote the role of chemistry in contributing to solutions to global challenges.
  • Build capacity by engaging young people with scientific disciplines, especially the scientific method of analysis developed by hypothesis, experiment, analysis and conclusions.

Most appropriately, this international initiative is being led by the International Union for Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), which in 1919 succeeded the International Association of Chemical Societies. IUPAC, founded by chemists from academia and industry, has a truly global reach with 51 National Adhering Organizations and 21 Associate Adhering Organizations.



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