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IUCr 1995 Report - Asian Crystallographic Association (AsCA)

The second Conference of the Asian Crystallographic Association was initially planned to be held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, but circumstances forced the Organizing Committee to change its plans. Eventually, it was decided in mid-May 1994 that Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, Thailand, would host the Conference, and the preparations continued. The Conference was held on the campus of the University for three days, 22-24 November 1995. With Professor P. Coppens, President of the IUCr, attending the opening ceremony, Professor W. Robinson, President of the AsCA from New Zealand, declared the meeting open. The subtitle of the Conference was Three Days Conference on Frontier Topics in Crystallography. About 240 people attended the meeting, including 100 from Japan.

Each day's sessions began with two Plenary Lectures, followed by six Microsymposia in three separate rooms. Poster sessions accompanied them. The speakers at the Plenary Lectures consisted of two from Japan and one each from Australia, China, India and Taiwan. In addition, a special lecture was given by the President of the IUCr. All the lectures proved to be good and were highly valued. Each Microsymposium was a great success and crowded to capacity. Especially remarkable were the vigorous activities and interchanges among young crystallographers from Australia, Japan and Taiwan. They appeared very promising.

The total number of papers presented was a little over 200. This number is slightly less than 240 papers at the time of the first Conference of AsCA held in Singapore. Nevertheless, it may be safely said that the second Conference contributed much to the AsCA itself, which now appears to have planted its deep roots in terms of both the scale and the significance of holding conferences in the Southeast Asian area.

The second Conference turned out to be highly successful under the strenuous efforts of Professor W. Robinson (New Zealand), President of the AsCA, Professor Y. Ohashi (Japan), Chairman of the Programme Committee, Professor P. Phavanantha (Thailand), Chairman of the Local Organizing Committee, Professor Y. Wang (Taiwan), Vice-President of the AsCA, and Professor T. Uragami (Japan), a member of the International Organizing Committee, among others. There were some communication problems in organizing the Conference. Also, early in October 1995 before the start of the Conference, Professor A. Authier made an on-site inspection of progress. His detailed report greatly helped to smooth the communication between the local committee and outside committee members. As an Asian crystallographer, I would like to express my sincere appreciation to Professor Authier for his devotion.

In closing, I think it is worth mentioning that, prior to the holding of this Conference, the Asian Crystallographic School of Gems and Precious Materials was held 20-21 November. Also, after the Conference, the Asian Crystallographic Computing School was held 27-30 November. The IUCr sponsored both these Schools and extended its support to young scientists, including those attending the second conference. Excluding those from Australia and Japan, the scholarships were distributed among 14 young attendees (Taiwan 3, Vietnam 3, India 2, Russia 2, Armenia 1, China 1, Malaysia 1, Sri Lanka 1) out of the 18 applicants.

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