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Community and collaboration in focus at BIWIC

Smiling man with a beard.
Assistant Professor Fred Marques Penha thinks that everyone should try organising an international event such as BIWIC.
Published Sep 06, 2023

The 28th BIWIC International Workshop on Industrial Crystallization was hosted by KTH last week. 85 participants from 27 countries came together to exchange knowledge and strengthen the community through discussions and floorball.

“The workshop aims at bringing together everyone that works in industrial crystallization, in a broad sense, from academia, research institutes and companies, in different levels of their careers. It was the founder Professor Joachim Ulrich’s view to escape the traditional way conferences are done,” says Assistant Professor Fred Marques Penha, one of the workshop organisers.

BIWIC do this by keeping the workshop relatively small, with no parallel sessions. Everyone attends all the talks, stimulating discussions and knowledge sharing.

Scientific advances and sports

“BIWIC is about discussing scientific advances and challenges, of course, but it is also about creating bonds and reconnecting with your peers in an environment where everyone comes with an open mind to share knowledge and constructive feedback,” says Fred Marques Penha and adds:

“Furthermore, there is traditionally a sports event, usually football. This year, we chose to transform it into floorball – you know, just to be very Swedish! The sports event is an extra opportunity to socialize and to break some ‘hierarchical (imaginary) barriers’. In the court, no matter your career stage, we can all exercise some teamwork – much needed after the isolation of the pandemics – and have some fun together!”

This was the first time that KTH hosted BIWIC but the workshop may return, according to Frederico Marques Penha, as the founder has passed to this group of organisers the responsibility to keep the workshop alive.

“Organising an international event such as BIWIC is challenging. However, I would say to anyone that can, embrace it. Despite the difficulties, it is a great opportunity to learn different things, develop new skills and understand the dynamics of your team while working towards something meaningful,” Fred Marques Penha.

Text: Jon Lindhe

BIWIC – A Short History

The first BIWIC was held in Bremen, Germany in 1990 and has since been organized in Germany, France, China, South Korea, Denmark, South Africa, the Netherlands, Thailand and Finland.

The workshop has become an important part of the conference calendar for crystallization groups worldwide. The aim is to gather interested parties from academia, industry, and research institutes to discuss their work and exchange knowledge towards overcoming challenges and advancing the knowledge frontiers in industrial crystallization.

Belongs to: School of Engineering Sciences in Chemistry, Biotechnology and Health (CBH)
Last changed: Sep 06, 2023