Regional news

A peek into the life of the IUCr 2014 International Programme Committee

Montreal, Quebec, Canada, August 5-12, 2014

[Montreal logo]
[Montreal committee] The International Programme Committee for the XXIII IUCr Congress in 2014 met in Montreal to develop the meeting programme. There was an opportunity to visit the Congress venue. Front row: Enrique Gutierrez-Puebla, Wieslawa Sikora, Massimo Nespolo, Jim Britten, João Rocha, Przemek Dera, Elliot Gilbert, Silvia Onesti. Second row: Beatrice Gillon, Ron Lifshitz, Paolo Radaelli, Artem Oganov, Koichi Kakimoto, Hanna Dabrowska, Samar Hasnain, Michele Bourgeois-Doyle. Third row: Albert Berghuis, Tom Terwilliger, Pinak Chakrabarti, Laurence Marks, Susan Bourne, Marvin Hackert. Back row: Martin Schmeing, Chris Chantler, Richard Garrett, Dave Billing, Pamela Whitfield, Daniel Vega, Robert Von Dreele.

Montreal, May 6, 8 o'clock on a beautiful morning. The weather has been gorgeous, above 20˚C temperatures, and the coming few days will be equally nice. Also, the Montreal Canadians, better known by hockey enthusiasts as the 'Habs', have made it to the NHL playoffs, making the city even more festive than usual. All in all it is the perfect day to walk outside, have a croissant and a café au lait for breakfast and enjoy life the Quebec way. However, for 30 crystallographers from around the world, representing Australia, Asia, Europe, Africa, North and South America, this is not the plan for today. These scientists are members of the International Programme Committee for the 2014 IUCr Congress in Montreal next August (now just a bit over a year away), and they are gathered on the 26th floor of a downtown building, facing three days of hard work preparing the Scientific Program for the Congress. The men and women of the IPC represent the various IUCr Commissions and each is eager to lobby for session topics that will attract and excite their members. For continuity, the chairs of the 2011 and 2017 program committees are full and active members. Also on the committee are the Editor-in-chief of the IUCr Journals, Samar Hasnain, and two members of the Executive Committee, Hanna Dabkowska and Marv Hackert (for a complete list of IPC members see

Montreal, May 8, 4 o'clock in the afternoon …… it is again a beautiful day. Unfortunately, the Montreal Canadians have not done well in the NHL playoffs, and are about to be eliminated, but Montrealers will recover, as the croissants and café au lait are still a great way to start the day. The 30 crystallographers from around the world are tired but happy. They have toured the Palais des Congrès de Montréal and are satisfied that it is an excellent site for the meeting, with the talks on one floor and the exhibits, coffee and posters one escalator away.

We are happy to share the following highlights of the program:

There will be Nobel Laureates sharing stories as well as croissants with you in Montreal. There will be a session dedicated to the late Louis Delbaere, a former ACA President and IUCr Executive Committee member who led the Canadian bid to host the 2014 meeting in Montreal. The basic format for the keynote lectures and microsymposia has not changed, although there will now be eight parallel MS sessions (previously seven), and each MS will have three invited speakers and three speakers chosen from submitted abstracts. The bottom line is that there will be: more diversity of topics; more presentations; more speakers selected from abstracts; and thus ever more reasons to attend IUCr2014. The IPC spent a lot of time refining and merging session topics, as well as identifying topics of cross-discipline interest. Each delegate worked hard to ensure that the sessions were distributed in a manner that minimized overlap of related topics. In recognition of the International Year of Crystallography, some lectures will be open to the public.

Both the Local Organizing Committee and the International Programme Committee have great expectations for IUCr2014, and more importantly they are making every effort to make this a 'Must Attend' event. Having the Congress coincide with the International Year of Crystallography, by its very nature, makes this a once in a lifetime happening, and we sincerely hope that you will come to Montreal and share this occasion with us. To receive future announcements and other information about the congress, please register your 'expression of interest' at

Albert Berghuis and Jim Brittan