IOCD Logo IOCD Logo International Organization
Chemical Sciences in Development
The Chemical Sciences And Development
IOCD promotes the pursuit and application of the chemical sciences for sustainable, equitable human development and economic growth, especially in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).
Current highlights include:

Launch of IOCD Working Group on Materials for Energy

IOCD is pleased to announce the formation of the Working Group Working Group on Materials for Energy Conversion, Saving and Storage (MATECSS). The goal of this Working Group is to enable local-scale energy conversion, energy storage and energy savings in targeted regions in low and middle-income countries (LMICs) through new materials at the forefront of renewable energy technologies. In cooperation with local researchers in LMICs, MATECSS will work towards identifying specific energy needs and developing solutions, with a focus on inexpensive adaptive technologies that do not require significant investments in capital equipment and infrastructure and that can make use of local/regional resources. It will also emphasize capacity building through training of young scientists and engineers.
The Group will be co-chaired by Mohamed Chaker (pictured right) and Federico Rosei (pictured left), professors at the Centre Énergie Matériaux Télécommunications at the Institut national de la recherche scientifique of the Université du Québec.
For more information, click here.
For Press Statement, click here.

Distinguished scientists appointed to IOCD bodies

IOCD is privileged to attract the interest and support of leading scientists from around the world. Following the meeting of IOCD's governing body, the General Assembly, on 26 November 2012, IOCD is pleased to announce the following elections:
New member of the IOCD General Assembly
The General Assembly is IOCD's highest governing body, responsible for decisions about IOCD's policies, strategies, programmes and budgets.
Professor Goverdhan Mehta has been elected as a member of the General Assembly for 2013-17. Prof. Mehta has served as President of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry. He is an internationally acclaimed researcher in organic chemistry with wide ranging research interests and is also actively involved in global science policy and education issues. Prof. Mehta served as Director of the Indian Institute of Science from 1998 to 2005, as President/Vice Chancellor of the University of Hyderabad from 1994 to 1998, and as a Professor of Organic Chemistry at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore from 1977 to 2005. He has been on many national and international advisory boards and committees in the public sector, as well as a consultant and advisor to a number of private sector companies. He was a President of the Indian National Academy of Sciences, President of the International Council for Science; an elected Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences, Third World Academy of Science, World Innovation Foundation, and Royal Society of Chemistry, a CSIR Bhatnagar Fellow, and Member of the Scientific Committee to the Prime Minister of India. He is a recipient of the Centenary Medal of the Royal Society of Chemistry (UK) and the Trieste Prize of TWAS. He has been awarded the civilian honour of “Padma Shri” by the President of India in 2000 and “Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur” of France in 2004. He is the recipient of over 30 medals/awards. He holds a D.Sc. from the University of Marseilles, France and a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from Poona University/ National Chemical Laboratory. He conducted postdoctoral research at Michigan State University and Ohio State University USA.
Prof. Mehta has engaged in IOCD's activities over a number of years, participated in a brainstorming on the future of IOCD in Namur in August 2012 and served on IOCD's Senior Advisory Council prior to his election to the General Assembly.
Professor Goverdhan Mehta, FNA, FRS
National Research Professor and Lilly-Jubilant Chair
School of Chemistry
University of Hyderabad, 500046

For more information on the General Assembly and its membership, click here.
New members of the IOCD Senior Advisory Council
IOCD appoints eminent persons to serve on its Senior Advisory Council, contributing ideas and assisting the governing body and secretariat to promote IOCD's work. Over the years, prominent men and women from all regions of the world, including Nobel Laureates, have contributed to IOCD's mission in this way. On 26 November 2012, IOCD's General Assembly elected the following new members to the Senior Advisory Council for 2013-17:
  • Professor Yitzak Apeloig (Israel)
  • Professor Ryoji Noyori (Japan)
  • Professor Atta Ur-Rahman (Pakistan)
For more information on the Senior Advisory Council and its membership, click here.

Articles on IOCD highlight 30 years of achievement and current strategy

A perspective on IOCD's three decades of achievements, its current activities and strategies for the decade, written by Professor Stephen Matlin, Head of IOCD's Strategic Development Programme, has been published in two major journals:
S.A. Matlin. IOCD : Looking to the Future Role of the Chemical Sciences in Development. Chimie Nouvelle, October 2012, 111, 5-8.
S.A. Matlin. IOCD: Chemical sciences in development. Chemistry International, 2013, 8-11. Click here.

2012 IOCD International Conference on Functional Molecules in Nature

Her Royal Highness Princess Chulabhorn of Thailand presenting the opening lecture of the IOCD International Conference on Functional Molecules in Nature, held in Nanjing, China on 22-24 September 2012.

The latest in the long-running series of international symposia organized by IOCD's Working Group on Plant Chemistry was held in Nanjing, China on 22-24 September 2012. The aim of the 2012 IOCD International Conference on Functional Molecules in Nature was to discuss trends, present latest results, and exchange ideas relevant to the chemistry and biology (particularly pharmacy) of natural products, including phytochemicals and microbial secondary metabolites.
For further details click here.

Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed with African Academy of Sciences (AAS)

Professor Jean-Marie Lehn, President of IOCD (right), and Professor Berhanu Abegaz, Executive Director of AAS, at the signing of the MOU at a meeting in Namur on 16 August 2012.

The MOU provides increased opportunities for collaboration, especially in strengthening education, research, practice and policy-making in science and technology and promoting its use to tackle major challenges of the 21st century.
For a Press Statement on the MOU, click here. For the full text of the MOU, click here. For more information about the African Academy of Sciences, click here
For further details on IOCD's partnerships and collaborations, click here.

Chemical Development: Chemistry, a Crossway Towards Interdisciplinary Science

This International Symposium in Namur, Belgium, was co-organized by IOCD and the Namur Research College (NARC) at Namur University on 5 July 2012. The Symposium featured a lecture by the chemistry Nobel Laureate Prof. Ryoji Noyori (Saitama) on “Science and Technology for Future Generations”. Other speakers included Prof. Gerhard Bringmann (Würzburg) Prof. Luisa De Cola (Munster), (Mainz), Prof. Don Hilvert (Zurich), Prof. Stephen Matlin (London), Prof. Klaus Müllen (Mainz) and Prof. Peter Seeberger (Potsdam).
Professor Ryoji Noyori, President of RIKEN and University Professor at Nagoya University, Japan, during his visit to Namur on 5 July 2012.

Professor Noyori, shared the 2001 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for the development of chiral catalysts for asymmetric synthesis.

  • For the complete programme, please see the IOCD/NARC Symposium website.
  • A report of the symposium can be downloaded here.

  • A copy of the presentation by Ryoji Noyori on “Science and Technology for Future Generations” can be downloaded here.

  • A copy of the presentation by Stephen Matlin on “New challenges in chemical sciences for development” can be downloaded here.

In association with the meeting, Wiley-VCH also published an interview with Professors Lehn and Krief on ‘Science and Responsibility’ in ChemistryViews.

BioVision 2012: Science's Quest for a Better Future

Participating by live video link, IOCD's President, Prof. Jean-Marie Lehn, was one of several Nobel Laureates contributing to this year's BioVision conference in Alexandria, Egypt on 22-25 April 2012. The conference opened with a Nobel Session on “Science's Quest for a Better Future” and also includes a track on “Science and Policy Serving Society”.
For more details on the conference, see the BioVison website here.
For more details of IOCD's role in promoting the chemical sciences for development click here.
Publication Highlights The Contribution Of The Chemical Sciences To Development
IOCD scientists Stephen Matlin and Berhanu Abegaz have published a major review of the role of chemistry in development:
S.A. Matlin, B.M. Abegaz, Chemistry for Development, in J. Garcia-Martinez, E. Serrano-Torregrosa (Eds), The Chemical Element: Chemistry's Contribution to Our Global Future, Wiley-VCH, Weinheim, 2011, Chapter 1, 1-70.
The chapter serves as an introduction to the book, published by Wiley-VCH to mark the 2011 International Year of Chemistry, which covers the multi-faceted contributions that chemistry makes to human wellbeing and in which prominent scientists highlight the role of chemistry in the fight against the biggest problems faced by humanity. The chapter by Matlin and Abegaz can be downloaded free as a ‘sample chapter’ from the book's website, where the whole book can be purchased:
The book is under the patronage of UNESCO — the highest form of the organization's support, granted to show its moral endorsement of an exceptional activity. In her personal letter to the editors announcing the award of patronage, UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova commented that “This is an excellent initiative that will contribute to the objectives of the International Year of Chemistry by promoting a better appreciation and understanding of chemistry among the public and young people. I would like to commend you and all the scientists involved in the production of the book. Your focus on the critical areas addressed by the Millennium Development Goals makes this work even more relevant to today's society.”
IOCD: 30 Years Of Promoting The Chemical Sciences For Development
The benefits from advances in chemistry and other sciences have not been evenly distributed globally. The least industrially/technologically advanced countries have remained the poorest and people in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) often have much lower life expectancies than those in high-income countries.
IOCD was established in 1981 by the Belgian chemist Pierre Crabbé, as the first international non- governmental organization specifically devoted to enhancing the role of the chemical sciences in the development process and involving chemists in LMICs. In its first 30 years of operation, the overall impact of IOCD has been to:
  • help highlight the importance of chemical sciences as contributors to development;
  • raise the profile of the field and its practitioners;

  • initiate, promote or sustain a number of technical, managerial, policy and collaborative projects or networks advancing chemical sciences in LMICs; and

  • contribute to vital resources for teaching, learning and research.

For more details of Pierre Crabbé's role as a scientist and humanitarian worker and of IOCD's work during its first 30 years see the sections on History and IOCD's achievements.
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