9th Polymer International-IUPAC Award Goes to Athina Anastasaki

Athina Anastasaki, winner of the 9th Polymer International-IUPAC Award

The SCI® (Society of Chemical Industry), the Editorial Board of Polymer International and the IUPAC Polymer Division are delighted to announce that Athina Anastasaki, Assistant Professor of Polymeric Materials at ETH Zurich, Switzerland, is the winner of the 9th Polymer International-IUPAC award for Creativity in Applied Polymer Science.

The award celebrates the outstanding contributions that Professor Anastasaki has made to polymer chemistry where she has developed an outstanding, independent, innovative, and highly visible research profile spanning across the broad areas of polymer synthesis, polymer self-assembly and depolymerization leading the next generation of polymer chemists.

In polymer synthesis, she has been able to settle a long-lasting misconception in controlled radical polymerization whereby polymers with high dispersity have been traditionally associated with low livingness and increased termination, thus limiting several applications. Her in-depth knowledge and understanding in polymerization mechanisms led her group to develop a number of ATRP and RAFT polymerization approaches in which the initiation and deactivation steps were elegantly regulated, unambiguously showing that extremely high end-group fidelity can be maintained regardless of the targeted dispersity.

Prof. Anastasaki has also initiated a new research niche by revolutionizing the depolymerization of polymers made by controlled radical polymerization. Before her work, depolymerization was mainly observed as an unwanted reaction during the polymerization of bulky monomers. In a completely new perspective, she developed the first example of near-quantitative depolymerization of RAFT-synthesized non-bulky polymers (such as PMMA) and showed that, under thermodynamically favourable conditions, both the monomer and the original RAFT agent can be recovered.

Recently she showed the first true reversal of controlled radical polymerization with polymer chains uniformly reducing in size during depolymerization, direct inverse of the uniform growth observed in controlled polymerizations. This recent work is expected to receive hundreds of citations from various chemistry fields as it unlocks many additional opportunities.

Prof. Anastasaki will give a lecture and receive this award at the 50th World Polymer Congress (MACRO 2024), which will be held in Warwick, UK from July 1 to 4, 2024. The award includes $5,000, plus up to $3,000 travel and hotel accommodation expenses to attend MACRO 2024.

The winner was selected by members of the scientific committee representing Polymer International and the IUPAC Polymer Division:

  • Dr Dick Dijkstra (Polymer International/IUPAC)
  • Professor Igor Lacik (IUPAC)
  • Professor Tim Long (Polymer International)
  • Professor Christine Luscombe (Polymer International/IUPAC)
  • Dr Carmen Scholz (Polymer International)
  • Professor Peter Mallon (IUPAC)
  • Dr Lydia Sosa-Vargas (IUPAC)
  • Professor Remzi Becer (IUPAC)

SCI, the IUPAC Polymer Division, the award selection committee and the Editorial Board of Polymer International extend their congratulations to Professor Anastasaki!

> Announcement republished in Chem Int July 2024

See originating call or link to PI https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10970126

reprinted from <https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/page/journal/10970126/homepage/9thpiiupacaward>

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