43rd IUPAC Council Meeting
Nominee for Bureau
Professor Penczeks research activities have focused on kinetics,
thermodynamics, and mechanisms of the polymerization processes, as well
as on the synthesis of new polymer structures. Among his many accomplishments
was establishing identical reactivities of ions and ion-pairs in cationic
ring-opening polymerization at a time when the paradigm of higher reactivity
of ions (free) was generally accepted as a dominating viewpoint. He
also applied for the first time in macromolecular chemistry, dynamic
NMR for studies of the ultra fast reactions of exchange between various
ionic forms of active species. In addition, he developed a new general
method of synthesis of soluble, highly branched (star shaped) polymers
by catalytic reaction of macromolecular alcohols with bicyclic compounds
(e.g., diepoxides) and methods of synthesis of simple, high molar mass
phosphodiester chains with identical repeating units as in nucleic acids
and teichoic acids.
Education and Career
Since 1974, Penczek has been a professor and head of the Department
of Polymer Chemistry at the Polish Academy of Science in Lodz. He received
his Ph.D. in 1963 from the Industrial Polymer Institute (Warsaw and
Leningrad) of the USSR Academy of Science. From 19641968, Penczek
was head of the Industrial Polymer Institute at the Laboratory of Polymerization.
From 19661967, he was a post-doctoral fellow under Prof. M. Szwarc
at Syracuse University, New York, USA.
Penczek has been a visiting professor at nine universities in Europe
and the United States. He has given invited lectures at 80 international
meetings and made over 290 printed contributions, including 8 monographs
and textbooks and 15 chapters in books and monographs.
Penczek was a titular member of the Macromolecular Division from 19982001
and has been an associate member of IUPAC since 2002. He was also chairman
of the World Polymer Congress 200038th IUPAC International Symposium
on Macromolecules. He has also been chairman of two, and co-chairman
of four, international symposia sponsored by IUPAC.
Related Professional Activities
In 1998, Penczek was elected a member of the Polish Academy of Science.
He is also a longstanding member of the Polish Chemical Society, of
which he served as chairman of the Division of Kinetics (19781988)
and chairman of the Polymer Division (19881998). From 19971999
he was president of the European Polymer Federation and in 1993 he was
a titular professor of the French Academy of Science.
Penczek is a member of the editorial boards of 11 international polymer
journals, and is co-editor of e-Polymers, the first fully electronic
Over the course of his career, Penczek has received numerous honors:
awards from the Polish Academy of Science (1974, 1985, 1988, 1989);
Medal of the University of Jena (1988); M. Sklodowska-Curie Prize (1990);
Medal of the French Academy of Science (1993); Chevalier dans lOrdre
de Palmes Académiques, France (1998); Biannual International
Award of the Belgian Polymer Group (2001); Eminent Professor of RIKEN,
Japan (2001); International Award and Personal Medal of the Society
of Polymer Science, Japan (2002); Otto Warburg Foundation Award, Germany
(2003); and the Biannual M. and P. Curie Joint Prize of the French and
Polish Chemical Societies (2004). Penczek is Doctor of Honoris Causa
of the University Pierre and Marie Curie in Paris (2003) and of the
Russian Academy of Sciences (2004).The same year he was given a title
of honorary professor of the Jagiellonian University in Krakow (Poland).
to Election of Officers and Bureau Members
at 43rd IUPAC Council Meeting