Welcome Message

Mustafa Varank

Minister of Industry and Technology of the Republic of Turkey

Dear Participants of IChO 2020,

It gives me great pleasure to welcome you all to the 52nd International Chemistry Olympiads (IChO) in Istanbul. I hope you will enjoy your stay in Turkey and take back nice memories with you. Chemistry as a science has been studied and applied for centuries in these lands; therefore, holding such an important event in İstanbul makes it even more meaningful.

You are all welcome to Istanbul, the beautiful city of two continents. As you all know, Istanbul is the only city in the world lying across continents, with one arm reaching out to Asia and the other to Europe. For more than 1500 years, it has been the capital of three Empires: Roman, Byzantine, and the Ottoman Empires. Setting aside its magnificent historical heritage thanks to its glorious past, Istanbul is the international center of finance and economy offering services in banking, telecommunications, industry, technology, marketing, engineering, and tourism. There are more than 60 universities in Istanbul and thousands of international students prefer to study in these universities.

In international competitions such as IChO, the contestants’ achievements are striking in two respects. Firstly; it builds up our hopes for the future through their performance, demonstrating what mankind is capable of intellectually. Secondly, it is striking to witness that the universality of chemistry reasoning is reflected in the work of the students despite the wide cultural diversities prevailing among them. I consider it as the reaffirmation of the fact that chemistry reasoning is one of the highest and most universal values that the human intellect has created so far.

Needless to say; fostering and promoting friendly relations among young chemists in the world would contribute to the establishment of multi-dimensional scientific cooperation, which we value very much as the Ministry of Industry and Technology of Turkey. I sincerely believe that IChO 2020 will serve as a platform where participants from all over the world could establish long-lasting friendships, which – in the end – will result in the creation of a more peaceful world as well as mutual understanding between our countries.

I am very honored by your presence in my country and wish you success in the Olympiads.

Prof. Dr. Aziz Sancar

Nobel Laureate In Chemistry

It is my great pleasure to greet you all at this special science summit in Istanbul, a beautiful city and a historical crossroads between continents and civilizations. This is also the city where I fell in love with chemistry and I received my fundamental chemistry education that many years later led to a Nobel Prize in Chemistry.  You have come together from different backgrounds to spend time with one another and compete to earn one of the medals in recognition of your love for chemistry.  I know you have worked very hard to achieve the honor of representing your home country at this Olympiad. However, you are not representing just your homeland but you are also representing the hope of humanity for a better world where science is supreme and is used to help build a just and prosperous world for all people regardless of national origin, ethnicity, or personal beliefs. If you choose to pursue this scientific journey, this will be just the beginning. You must continue to work hard as I believe strongly that hard work is the most important key to success. I also believe that the honor of being an Olympian, which all of you share, goes hand in hand with the responsibility of serving humanity. You are our hope for a better and a just future for mankind.

Chemistry defines the way a substance changes and reacts with other substances. Thus, learning chemistry helps you better understand the nature of relations between individuals. This will lead you to contribute to the well-being of humanity and to a better world.

I wish you all good luck at the Istanbul Chemistry Olympiad.


Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2015
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, USA
Hacettepe University, Ankara, Turkey
Izmir Biomedicine and Genome Center, Izmir, Turkey

Prof. Dr. Hasan Mandal

President of the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey

It is a great honor for Turkey to host the 52nd International Chemistry Olympiad (IChO) in Istanbul Technical University (ITU). ITU is one of the oldest technical universities in the world. As ITU provides an international environment, it offers many opportunities for students to gain international experience. I am very happy to express that the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK) is coordinating the organization of this event. I would like to extend my warm welcome to all participants from every part of the world!

Chemistry is commonly referred to as the central science not only due to its connections with other scientific disciplines but also owing to its impact on our lives. The knowledge derived from chemistry allows us to appreciate the world we live in, as well as understand how to change and improve it. Therefore, it is very exciting to host the most talented young chemists who will take part in shaping the future of chemistry as well as our world. More than 300 IChO contestants from nearly 80 countries on five continents believing in “chemistry for a better tomorrow” will have ten days of magnificent experiences.

In addition to scientific experiences, our guests will also enjoy various activities and experience amazing opportunities in Istanbul, which is a city of fantastic history, culture, and beauty. Istanbul is the financial center of Turkey and it retains its metropolitan status: the city's population is more than 14 million people, making it one of the largest cities in the world. The days you will spend in Istanbul will be unforgettable in all - scientific, cultural and educational terms. The city of Istanbul, where most activities will take place, will surely offer you fascinating perspectives and memorable experiences. So please enjoy your time here.

We look forward to welcoming all participants of the 52nd International Chemistry Olympiad to participate in this great scientific event. Let’s meet in Istanbul where the continents and cultures “Bond”.

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