The EYCN was fortunate to have both the EuChemS President, Professor Pilar Goya, and the President-Elect, Professor Floris Rutjes, participate in the DA and share their views on the EuChemS future. The society is celebrating its 50-year anniversary this year.
"Great event!", said Professor Goya, "Excellent start to celebrate our past 50 years with this enthusiastic young network representing our future". Professor Rutjes could also "clearly feel the enthusiasm and motivation among the EYCN delegates" and found the network to have "lots of inspiring ideas and full of energy to build on EuChemS' future!"
Many of the other guests also talked about the future of chemistry, among which Professor Artur Silva, the SPQ President, pointed out that "the future of chemistry in Europe is safe since the young chemists (EYCN) discuss it in Barcelona in a very serious and organized way but in an excellent ambiance and atmosphere".
The President-Elect of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), Professor Javier Garcia-Martinez, gave an inspiring speech about the future of the chemical profession: "The chemistry profession is going through a profound transformation driven by the application of artificial intelligence and robotics to chemistry research and production. However, most are still unaware of or underprepared for this major change."
Professor Garcia-Martinez emphasized the role of young chemists in tackling this challenge and expressed IUPAC’s willingness to support their effort: "The EYCN provides resources, guidance and opportunities for young chemists in Europe and beyond to learn, adapt and lead this transformation, and IUPAC is delighted to help them and connect them with the global chemical community."
The Royal Society of Chemistry is one of the key players in the global chemical community and continues to support and be actively involved within the EYCN. With the collaborative efforts of the RSC and the EYCN, the 3rd Photochimica chemistry photography contest was launched during the DA in Sitges. In the DA, the EYCN also warmly welcomed two new RSC delegates, Intisar Salah and Shona Richardson. "It was a remarkable opportunity," according to Shona, "to meet like-minded people who are motivated and passionate about the future of chemistry." Intisar shared these views and found that her first DA "was met with a lot of positivity". Intisar also highlighted the importance of the DA in establishing collaborations and contacts in the field. All in all, both Shona and Intisar found the assembly to be an enlightening experience and are looking forward to working closely with the EYCN before attending the next DA held in Fribourg in January 2021 organized by the Swiss Chemical Society.