A busy month for EuChemS

President's Column
Floris Rutjes,

If people ask me how much time I spent on EuChemS, I usually answer somewhere between half a day and one day a week. There are weeks where this is less, and weeks where this is more of course. The past two weeks definitely rank in the latter category. On February 9 and 10, we had a EuChemS Executive Board meeting, hosted by the Association for Greek Chemists, in Thessaloniki, Greece. Interestingly, it was my first face-to-face board meeting as President of EuChemS since I started in 2021. This meeting was very welcome to get better acquainted with relatively many new board members: Angela Agostiano, the new president-elect, Hans-Peter Lühti, the new treasurer, Helen Pain, permanent member as CEO of the RSC, and Joana Amaral, representative of the Professional Networks. With such substantial changes in the composition it is beneficial to meet in person and have more possibilities to talk to each other than only interacting through a screen.

The Tuesday thereafter, on February 14, was the Global Women’s Breakfast. This worldwide event, initiated by IUPAC, has been adapted by many organizations and I am proud that EuChemS has for a few years had its own GWB version. This time the topic was about women scientists in the forefront of conflicts with fascinating lectures about amongst others chemical safety and education, and forensic science to detect chemical weapons. Thanks to the efforts of the EuChemS Office, the involvement of Angela Agostiano and Pilar Goya and the presence of a large number of participants also this year’s edition was a big success.

Two days later, a small delegation of the Executive Board went to Bern, Switzerland, for the EuChemS Historical Landmark Award for the Jungfraujoch High Altitude Research Station. The Swiss Chemical Society had organized a superb two-day event, with lectures on the first day, concerning the role of Jungfraujoch and the research that is performed there, followed by an excursion on the second day to the research station which is at an altitude of approximately 3500 m. Upon arrival at the research station, there was time for guided tours along the research facilities, and foremost for the unveiling of the plaque that comes with winning the EuChemS Historical Landmark Award. EuChemS can be proud to have this historical location on the award list. One slight drawback was that the weather could have been better, as most of the time the Jungfraujoch was covered in cloud and only a few moments revealed stunning sights of the surroundings.

Floris Rutjes
President European Chemical Society

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