Research in Germany Participates in ACS Fall 2020 Virtual Meeting & Expo

(08/24/20) For many years, the DFG Office North America has been organizing the Research in Germany booth at the Fall Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS). Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, ACS – one of the world's largest scientific societies – decided early on to hold the conference in a virtual format, and the Research in Germany initiative once again ensured continuity and sustained Germany's visibility as a place of research by hosting a virtual booth.

Live online seminar, "Doing your Chemical Research in Germany", at ACS 2020

Live online seminar, "Doing your Chemical Research in Germany", at ACS 2020


The four-day conference, which began on 17 August with the motto 'Moving Chemistry from Bench to Market,’ offered a blend of live sessions, video chat meetings and a choice of presentations and posters that could be viewed individually. Over 60 exhibitors were present in the virtual exhibition hall. As in previous years, Research in Germany was in good company alongside the booths of international names in the chemical industry, publishing houses and service providers. Exhibitors could connect with visitors via the chat function, e-mail forms and an appointment schedule. Although it was not a perfect substitute for in-person interaction, these tools did enable valuable conversations with people who had a serious interest in a research career in Germany.

On the first day of the conference, the Research in Germany initiative hosted an online seminar that replaced the traditional Science Lunch. At the virtual event, a presentation giving an overview of career paths and funding programs was rounded off by testimonials from researchers. Marc Prosenc presented 3MET, a DFG-funded Transregio research group, while three US-based scientists – Murthy Gudipati (Jet Propulsion Laboratory), Sergi Garcia Segura (Arizona State University) and Christopher Ober (Cornell University) – spoke about their personal experiences as researchers in Germany.

Although there is still plenty of room for improvement in virtual conference formats, it provided valuable experience in continuing to promote Germany as a place to research and a means of staying in touch with researchers all over the world in spite of pandemic-related restrictions.

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