Associazione Italiana di Cristallografia (AIC)
The success of the XX IUCr congress has had a significant impact on the Italian crystallographic community, producing great enthusiasm for new initiatives. Schools, workshops and meetings are now organized in a broader international framework. In 2007, the Italian National Congress became the first meeting of the Italian and Spanish Crystallographic Associations (MISCA). The event was preceded by a jointly organised school on protein crystallography and the second MISCA is scheduled in Spain next year. Among other initiatives in 2006, an IUCr school in basic crystallography was held in Pontignano Tuscany, and an AIC school on polycrystalline materials was organized in Martinafranca (near Bari). In this place, also a school on charge density. Another AIC school on polycrystalline materials was held in cooperation with the Swiss Crystallographic Assn. at the Paul Scherrer Inst. in Villigen (CH) and it will become a regular biennial event. This year, reviving a 30-year-old tradition, a school on scattering techniques featuring an international teaching staff will be held at the U. of Camerino (August 30-September 4, 2009: http://web.unipmn.it/~chimfis/AICS2009/). A thriving AIC subgroup on crystal growth is planning an international school on 'Adsorption, Absorption and Crystal Growth' in Gargnano near Brescia in 2010. International workshops on crystallographic methods are regularly organized in Bari by Carmelo Giacovazzo and his group. The most recent, PHARE 2009, attracted 90 participants. But the jewel in the crown of international crystallographic education remains the Erice schools that have been organized by Lodovico Riva and Paola Spadon for the past 35 years.
Finally, in September 2011, the Italian National Council of Research (CNR) will host the General Assembly of the International Council of Science (ICSU) that joins 27 Scientific Unions. In conjunction with this meeting, the AIC has been asked to organize a one-day scientific symposium. Topics of social interest (health, environment, innovative materials and more) shall be discussed by renowned speakers, including Nobel laureates. The fundamental role played by crystallography in modern science and the active presence of the IUCr within ICSU will be highlighted.
Details (in Italian and English) of all AIC activities including the history and programs of the Association and individual members can be found at the new website (www.cristallografia.org).Carlo Mealli