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43rd IUPAC Council Meeting

Nominee for Bureau

Alan Smith (United Kingdom)

Alan Smith

For more than 30 years, Dr. Smith has held leadership positions in the chemical industry. Most of his career was spent with Laporte, but he also worked for BDH/Merck for and started a consulting company.

Education and Career
Smith gained his B.Sc. (Hons.) in chemistry at Queen Mary College, University of London in 1965, during which time he had his first publication while still an undergraduate. He stayed on there and in 1968 received a Ph.D. in physical organic chemistry. He was then awarded a NATO Postdoctoral Fellowship for two years (1968–1970) and spent the first year on research into heterocyclic chemistry at the Technical University in Delft, Netherlands. The second year was spent in the School of Pharmacy, Nottingham University.

He joined the staff of the University of East Anglia (1970–1972), where he lectured and carried out research for the International Institute of Synthetic Rubber Producers. From 1972 to 1987, he worked at Laporte, during which time it became a leader in specialty chemicals. As Head of Research and Development, he had worldwide responsibilities for Laporte’ s technology, and he also looked after their laboratories for Interox, Laporte’ s joint venture with Solvay.

From 1987 to 1991, he was on the Board of BDH/Merck in the UK, where he was technical director and ran their Advanced Materials Business. From 1991 to 1996, he returned to Laporte as the head of Group Technology, with responsibilities for worldwide technical matters, especially relating to their extensive program of acquisitions.

In 1996, he set up AZTECH Consultancy, which advises on scientific technical matters and acquisitions and mergers, and included the post of part-time technical director for BIP, Ltd. He is currently actively involved in UK government projects, the main one is their initiative on nanotechnology. He also carries out roadmapping strategies for the South African government.

IUPAC Involvement
Smith is a titular member of the Committee on Chemistry and Industry, which he has been a part of since 1994. From 1995 to 1999, he was on the Editorial Advisory Board for Chemistry International. He is also a titular member of the CHEMRAWN Committee, which he has been a member of since 1998. From 1997 to 2001, Smith was a delegate for the UK’s National Committee, and in 2001 he was chairman of the UK delegation. Since 2002, he has been a member of the Bureau and a member of the Project Committee. He is also currently chairman of the Future Actions Committee for the Chemistry for Water CHEMRAWN conference held in Paris in 2004.

Related Professional Activities
Smith served on the Chemical Industry Association’s Science, Education, and Technology Committee from 1986 to 1996. He is past president of the Industrial Affairs Division of the Royal Society of Chemistry, and is also on the following RSC committees: Annual Conference Committee, Innovation Team Award Committee, and the Research Fund Committee. He is a member of the Industrial Advisory Boards for Chemistry at Imperial College and Bristol University, and lectures at the University of Strathclyde and Nottingham University. He was on a CBI task force to obtain industrial input for the next Research Assessment Exercise for UK universities. He is on the Board of the latest Faraday Partnership on Colloids, established by the UK Government. From 1995 to 1999, he was on the Chemicals Panel of the Government’s Foresight exercise. From 1999 to the present, he has been on the Materials Panel, and continues to lecture extensively on foresight. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and a fellow of the Linnean Society.


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