The “Stepto Lecture” has been established to commemorate Bob Stepto, who passed away on 13 September 2015 at the age of 78. Prof. Stepto was a prolific and highly pedigreed researcher in his own right, with over 300 publications to his name from his career at University of Manchester Institute of Science of Technology, which in the latter part of his career was merged with Manchester University. More to the point, Bob gave 28 years of service to IUPAC, including being Chair of the Commission on Macromolecular Nomenclature (now known as the Subcommittee on Polymer Terminology) for the period 1991–2000 and then President of the Polymer Division over 2002–05. During all this time Bob participated actively in countless projects and he was a mentor to many. In recognition of his titanic status within and exceptional service to IUPAC, it has been decided to honor and remember Bob via a plenary lecture at each World Polymer Congress.
The winner should not only be an exceptional polymer scientist recognized as a true world leader in his or her research field, but – in the true spirit of Bob – should also have made an indelible contribution to the polymer science community beyond the research domain, whether through IUPAC and/or by other means. The Awardee is selected by the Polymer Division based on nominations received during the year of the Macro meetings.
The Award was first presented during Macro 2016 in Istanbul.
2016 Award, Prof. Michael Buback
Michael Buback studied chemistry at the University of Karlsruhe, where he received his PhD in 1972. After Habilitation in 1978 he was awarded a Heisenberg Fellowship by the German Science Foundation (DFG). He became Professor for Applied Physical Chemistry at the University of Göttingen in 1981, Full Professor for Technical and Macromolecular Chemistry in 1995, and Member of the Göttingen Academy of Sciences in 2000. Michael Buback has previously received the Dechema Award, the Bunsen-Denkmu¨nze and the Herman F. Mark Medal. He has published over 300 peer-reviewed papers. His research interests cover the entire field of radical polymerization with a focus on detailed kinetic studies via pulsed-laser initiation carried out in conjunction with highly time-resolved IR, near-IR and EPR spectroscopy. Further activities address the kinetics and the phase behavior of chemical processes over extended ranges of pressure and temperature. He has special expertise in the quantitative monitoring, via online vibrational spectroscopy, of species occurring during chemical transformations at pressures up to 7000 bar. Michael has also distinguished himself through his service and leadership in IUPAC, most notably as Chair of the Subcommittee on Modeling of Polymerization Kinetics and Processes up until 2007 and then as President of the Polymer Division for the period 2012–15.
(About Macro 2016: Chem Int, vol. 39, no. 4, 2017, pp. 28-32. https://doi.org/10.1515/ci-2017-0409)
2018 Award, Prof. Christopher Ober