At C&EN Futures Festival, Aug. 25-26, leading scientists look to discoveries of tomorrow

WASHINGTON, Aug. 4, 2020 — Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN), the newsmagazine of the American Chemical Society (ACS), is proud to announce the inaugural edition of the Futures Festival, a virtual event being held Aug. 25-26, in which leaders from across the chemistry enterprise will come together in a forward-looking forum featuring the people, ideas and discoveries that will shape the future of science.

“We are facing a time of enormous upheaval around the world, with no one left untouched by global challenges,” says C&EN Editor-in-Chief Bibiana Campos Seijo, Ph.D. “Science will be the key to overcoming these shared issues, which is why it is more important than ever to bring scientists together for a forward-thinking, free exchange of ideas.”

During the free event, C&EN will present the Talented 12 Class of 2020, young chemists working in academia, industry and government who are just beginning to put their innovative and transformative ideas into practice. Harvard University’s Stuart Schreiber, Ph.D., will provide career advice to these young scientists and others who are early in their careers.

The two-day festival will also feature select CAS Future Leaders’ inspiring first-person-fueled stories about their vision for the future of science, as well as the presentation of the inaugural ACS Central Science Disruptors & Innovators Prize to Zhenan Bao, Ph.D. The prize will honor Bao’s work in transforming the central science of chemistry. CRISPR pioneer Jennifer Doudna, Ph.D., of the University of California (UC), Berkeley will lead a program featuring C&EN’s Trailblazers, women entrepreneurs who are leading companies that solve the world’s greatest challenges through chemistry.

ACS Central Science Editor-in-Chief Carolyn Bertozzi, Ph.D., of Stanford University will be joined by former Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation CEO Susan Desmond-Hellman and Moderna Therapeutics Chief Medical Officer Tal Zaks in a conversation on the future of science. The Futures Festival will include opportunities for networking, discussions on how to improve diversity in the scientific enterprise, and the chance for attendees to make meaningful connections with leaders throughout the fields of chemistry.

“The scientists featured in this event are conducting groundbreaking research, and represent the future of our field,” says Schreiber. “The Futures Festival represents an incredible chance to see where science will be heading in the next five years.”

The Futures Festival is sponsored by Thermo Fisher Scientific, Pfizer and MilliporeSigma. The event is free and open to all. A recording will be available to registrants who cannot attend. Registration is open here.

The American Chemical Society (ACS) is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. ACS’ mission is to advance the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of Earth and its people. The Society is a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related information and research through its multiple research solutions, peer-reviewed journals, scientific conferences, eBooks and weekly news periodical Chemical & Engineering News. ACS journals are among the most cited, most trusted and most read within the scientific literature; however, ACS itself does not conduct chemical research. As a specialist in scientific information solutions (including SciFinder® and STN®), its CAS division powers global research, discovery and innovation. ACS’ main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

ACS encourages journalists to apply for press credentials for the ACS Fall 2020 Virtual Meeting & Expo, taking place Aug. 17-20, by contacting To automatically receive press releases from the American Chemical Society, contact

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