Members Perspectives

Chemistry goes digital and international 

Copyright: P.Schreiner, Photo: Katrina Friese

GDCh Science Forum

The GDCh Science Forum Chemistry (WiFo) 2021 will take place from 29 August to 1 September and will be for the first time completely online. The most important chemistry congress in the German-speaking region with usually more than 2000 participants from Germany and abroad is organised by the German Chemical Society (GDCh).  

“Our next WiFo will not only be digital, but also much more international than previous science forums,” emphasizes GDCh President Professor Dr. Peter R. Schreiner. “Most of the scientific presentations will be held in English, and the digital event will make it easier for interested people from all over the world to attend the WiFo.” The GDCh therefore expects a significantly higher number of international scientists than at previous WiFos.  

The scientific program includes international top research on socially relevant “megatopics” such as infection research, energy, sustainability, and climate research. Numerous symposia will also be devoted to different fields of chemistry. In addition, some of the GDCh’s most prestigious prizes will be awarded. A poster session and a job fair will enable young scientists in particular to present themselves. In addition, the digital conference platform offers very good opportunities to expand the personal network. Registration will be open from 25 May at 

Karin J. Schmitz,
GDCh, Head of Public Relations Department

GDCh supports Citizens’ Council on Climate in Germany

Scientists warn that the climate protection measures initiated so far are not sufficient in stopping the further increase in global warming. In Germany, the share of fossil fuels (coal, oil, natural gas, etc.) in energy consumption was still around 80% in 2019. Politicians fear that they lack the support of the general public for the necessary measures, although according to surveys, a majority of Germans would like to see a more decisive climate policy. At the same time, most citizens do not know what concrete action would have to be taken, what choices are available and what influence these would have on their everyday lives. Following positive experiences in Great Britain and France, the Bürgerrat Klima (Citizens’ Council on Climate) was founded in Germany to help resolve this difficult situation. The German Chemical Society, GDCh, belongs to the circle of supporters of the first nationwide Citizens’ Council on Climate (

Under the patronage of former German President Horst Köhler, 160 people from all over Germany with different backgrounds and lifestyles are discussing in twelve sessions which socially just, ecologically responsible, and economically viable climate protection activities Germany should take in the coming years to ensure compliance with the Paris Climate Agreement. The resulting recommendations are to be handed over to the future coalition partners after the elections in autumn.

Karin J. Schmitz,
GDCh, Head of Public Relations Department