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Mesoscale Chemistry: A Workshop Summary (2015)

Chapter: Appendix B: About the Chemical Sciences Roundtable

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Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: About the Chemical Sciences Roundtable." National Research Council. 2015. Mesoscale Chemistry: A Workshop Summary. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21733.
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Appendix B

About the Chemical Sciences Roundtable

The Chemical Sciences Roundtable (CSR) was established in 1996 by the National Research Council and its Board on Chemical Sciences and Technology. The CSR held its first meeting in February 1997, and it now meets three times annually. As a neutral and credible forum for communication among all segments of the chemical enterprise, the CSR provides great potential for enhancing the future well-being of the chemical sciences. The realm of the chemical sciences and technology not only spans the science and engineering disciplines but also encompasses a major segment of U.S. industry.

The CSR is a unique science-oriented, apolitical forum of leaders of the chemical enterprise. Its objectives are to facilitate enhanced understanding of issues in the chemical sciences and technologies that affect government, industry, academic, national laboratory, and nonprofit sectors, and the interactions among them; and to furnish a vehicle for education, exchange of information and discussion of issues and trends that affect the chemical sciences. The Roundtable accomplishes these objectives in two ways:

  • First, through exchange of information among its members at three meetings annually of the CSR. The members in turn share the exchanges with others in their own institutions and professional organizations to which they belong.
  • Second, by organizing workshops on highly relevant and important topics, for which published proceedings are made broadly available throughout the chemical sciences community. These workshops and the proceedings are designed to enable follow-up discussion or action by others in the chemical sciences community.

The CSR’s charter enables government representatives to serve as full members, but consequently precludes it from providing advice and recommendations. Its primary role therefore is to facilitate communication among leaders in the chemical sciences, who can in turn bring important information to the broader chemical sciences community. Typically, CSR members represent the senior chemist or chemical engineer in an organization, providing the basis for strong collaboration and cooperation among federal agencies, nongovernmental organizations, professional and industry associations, universities, the chemical industry, private foundations, federal laboratories, the legislative arena, and the Executive Branch. Through a combination of educational and leadership roles, the CSR will continue its major role in maintaining the health and strength of the chemical sciences in the United States.

Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: About the Chemical Sciences Roundtable." National Research Council. 2015. Mesoscale Chemistry: A Workshop Summary. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21733.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: About the Chemical Sciences Roundtable." National Research Council. 2015. Mesoscale Chemistry: A Workshop Summary. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21733.
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Page 77
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: About the Chemical Sciences Roundtable." National Research Council. 2015. Mesoscale Chemistry: A Workshop Summary. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21733.
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Page 78
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In the last few decades great strides have been made in chemistry at the nanoscale, where the atomic granularity of matter and the exact positions of individual atoms are key determinants of structure and dynamics. Less attention, however, has been paid to the mesoscale--it is at this scale, in the range extending from large molecules (10 nm) through viruses to eukaryotic cells (10 microns), where interesting ensemble effects and the functionality that is critical to macroscopic phenomenon begins to manifest itself and cannot be described by laws on the scale of atoms and molecules alone.

To further explore how knowledge about mesoscale phenomena can impact chemical research and development activities and vice versa, the Chemical Sciences Roundtable of the National Research Council convened a workshop on mesoscale chemistry in November 2014. With a focus on the research on chemical phenomena at the mesoscale, participants examined the opportunities that utilizing those behaviors can have for developing new catalysts, adding new functionality to materials, and increasing our understanding of biological and interfacial systems. The workshop also highlighted some of the challenges for analysis and description of mesoscale structures. This report summarizes the presentations and discussion of the workshop.

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