CHMC is a Commission of the International Union of History and Philosophy of Science / Division of History of Science and Technology (IUHPS/DHST). The aim is to focus interest on, and to create a framework for, research on the history of modern chemistry with particular emphasis on twentieth-century chemistry in its relationship to the biomedical sciences, physics, instrumentation, and technology.
Manfred Eigen, Göttingen (Chemistry Nobel Laureate of 1967), and Roald Hoffmann, Ithaca (Chemistry Nobel Laureate of 1981), support the aims of CHMC as Honorary Patrons.
CHMC organizes scientific symposia at the International Congresses of the History of Science and, if possible, in the years in between these congresses.
- CHMC establishes efficient means of communication for historians of chemistry from all over the world through the electronic news bulletin and mailing list CHEM-HIST.
- CHMC maintains contacts with other scholarly associations and societies devoted to the history of chemistry or to the history of science and technology. It co-operates with other DHS Commissions and Scientific Sections.
- CHMC collects data for a World Directory of historians of chemistry.
- CHMC seeks to encourage other initiatives in the historiography of modern chemistry.
According to IUHPS/DHST statutes, Historical Commissions are international associations financially dependent upon DHST. They report annually to the Secretary General and submit reports on their activities to each General Assembly.
CHMC has no formal membership. Everybody with a scholarly or professional interest in the history of chemistry who communicates and co-operates with the Commission will be considered a member. Business is run by an Executive Council [for members, see the column to the left] approved by IUHPS/DHST Council. Meetings and Conferences are prepared by their respective Program Committees. The following meetings and conferences have been organized:
- "Between Science and Economy: Research in the German Chemical and Pharmaceutical Industry, 1900-1945", Deutsches Museum, Munich, Germany, 29 June 1998
- "Recent Issues in the Historiography of Chemistry", Sidney M. Edelstein Center for the History of Science and Technology, The Hebrew University, Jerusalem, 23–24 July 1998
- "Between Physics and Biology: Chemical Sciences in the Twentieth Century", Deutsches Museum, Munich, 28–30 May 1999 (Carsten Reinhardt (Editor), Roald Hoffmann, Chemical Sciences in the 20th Century: Bridging Boundaries, March 2001, Hardcover, 300 Pages, ISBN 3-527-30271-9)
- "The Environment: Historical Context and Present Day Perspectives", Sidney M. Edelstein Center for the History and Philosophy of Science, Technology, and Medicine, The Hebrew University, Jerusalem, 7–9 November 1999 (Peter J. T. Morris and Anthony S. Travis (eds.), Forty Years Since Silent Spring: Historical Perspectives on the Pollution of Water and Soil by Synthetic Chemicals, 1860-1960, special issue of Ambix, 49 (2002): 1-66)
- "From Test-Tube to the Autoanalyzer: The Development of Chemical Instrumentation in the Twentieth Century", Imperial College, South Kensington, London, 10-13 August 2000 (From Classical to Modern Chemistry. The Instrumental Revolution, edited by Peter J. T. Morris, copublished with the Royal Society of Chemistry (CHF has North American distribution rights) 2002, Cloth, xxvi + 348, ISBN 0-85404-479-5)
- "Shifting Centres and Emerging Peripheries: Global Patterns in Twentieth-Century Chemistry", XXI. ICHS, Mexico City, 10 July 2001 (Ernst Homburg (ed.), Shifting Centres and Emerging Peripheries: Global Patterns in Twentieth-Century Chemistry, special issue of: Ambix 52 (2005), pp. 3-87)
- "Industrial-Academic Relationships in the Chemical and Molecular Sciences", Chemical Heritage Foundation, Philadelphia, 3–5 October 2002 (Carsten Reinhardt, Harm G. Schröter (eds.), Academia and Industry in Chemistry: The Impact of State Interventions, and the Effects of Cultural Values, special issue of: Ambix 51 (2004), pp. 99-186)
- "Communication in 20th-Century Chemistry", 4th International Conference on History of Chemistry, Budapest, 3-6 September 2003
- "Public Images of Chemistry in the Twentieth Century", Cité des Science et de l'Industrie / Maison de la chimie, Paris, 17-18 September 2004 (The Public Image of Chemistry, ed. by Joachim Schummer, Bernadette Bensaude-Vincent and Brigitte Van Tiggelen, Hyle: International Journal for the Philosophy of Chemistry, vol. 12/1 (June 2006); vol. 12/2 (November 2006) <http://www.hyle.org/journal/issues/12-1/index.html> and <http://www.hyle.org/journal/issues/12-2/index.html> and in The Public Image of Chemistry, ed. by Joachim Schummer, Bernadette Bensaude-Vincent and Brigitte Van Tiggelen (Singapore/London: World Scientific, 2007), 383 pp.)
- "COLOR: 20th-Century Art, Business, and Chemistry", Sidney M. Edelstein Center for the History and Philosophy of Science, Technology, and Medicine, The Hebrew University, Jerusalem, 15 April 2005
- "Globalization and Diversity of Modern Chemistry and Chemical Technology", XXII. ICHS, Bejing, China, 24-30 July 2005 (published in: "Globalization and Diversity in Modern Chemical Sciences,"ed. by Yasu Furukawa, in: Historia Scientiarum, 16/3 (2007), pp. 221-309 = special issue)
- "History of the Food Chain: From Agriculture to Consumption and Waste", Gödöllö, Hungary, 31 August - 3 September 2006, follow-up meeting to the First European Chemistry Congress, Gödöllö, Hungary, 1-4 September 2006 (published in: History of the Food Chain: From Agriculture to Consuption and Waste - Proceedings, ed. by Éva Vámos, Budapest: Hungarian Chemical Society, 2006; 136 pp., ISBN 963-9319-63-5)
- "Nineteenth-Century Chemistry: Spaces and Collections", Museum of Science, University of Lisbon, Portugal, 1-4 February 2007 (published in: Spaces and Collections in the History of Science, ed. by Marta C. Lourenço and Ana Carneiro, Lisbon 2009, x + 288 p., ISBN 978-972-98709-6-5).
- "Neighbours and territories: The evolving identity of Chemistry", Leuven, Belgium, 28 August - 1 September 2007 (published as: Neighbours and Territories: The Evolving Identity of Chemistry, ed. by José Ramón Bertomeu-Sánchez, Duncan Thorburn Burns and Brigitte Van Tiggelen, Louvain-la-Neuve: Memosciences, 2008, 752 pp., ISBN 978-2-9600815-0-3)
- "Philosophy and History of Chemisty", Coburg, Germany, 3-6 August 2008 (Joint Symposium with the International Society for the Philosophy of Chemistry)
- "History of Materials Research", Göttingen, Germany, 24-27 March, 2009 (Joint Conference with the History Divisions of the German Chemical Society and the German Physical Society). (A selection of papers will be published in: Mitteilungen der Fachgruppe Chemie der GDCh 21 (December 2010), and in a special issue of NTM: Journal of the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine, vol. 19 (2011).)
- "Chemistry in the Aftermath of World Wars", Symposium at the XXIII International Congress of History of Science, Budapest, Hungary, 29 July 2009 (A selection of papers was published, under the guest editorship of Jeffrey Johnson, as a special issue of Ambix: The Journal of the Society for the History of Alchemy and Chemistry, vol. 58, No. 2, pp. 99-170)
- "The Power of Margins: The Construction and Transformation of Disciplinary Identities in Chemistry", Regensburg, Germany, 4-6 December 2009
- "Scientific Objects and their Materiality in the History of Chemistry", Berlin, Germany, 24-26 June 2010
- "Renewing the Heritage of Chemistry in the 21st Century: Conversations on the Preservation, Presentation and Utilization of Sources, Sites and Artefacts", Paris, 21-24 June 2011
Co-Organised together with: Académie des Sciences, Paris; Société Chimique de France (SCF), Paris; Maison de la Chimie, Paris; ESPCI Paris Tech; Chemical Heritage Foundation, Philadelphia, USA; and in conjunction with the UNESCO-IUPAC International Year of Chemistry 2011 (site français).
- "Pathways of Knowledge: 8th International Conference on the History of Chemistry", Rostock, Germany, 14-16 September 2011 <www.gdch.de/ichc2011>
Organised by the Working Party on History of Chemistry of the European Association for Chemical and Molecular Sciences (EuCheMS) and the German Chemical Society, with contributions from CHMC
- Summer Symposium, International Society for the Philosophy of Chemistry (ISPC), to be held at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, in Leuven/Louvain, Belgium, 7-11 August 2012. Organized by Pieter Thyssen, Brigitte Van Tiggelen (CHMC liaison), and Arnout Ceulemans.
- "Between Material Substances and Abstract Ideas: Chemists' Objects of Inquiry, 18th-21st Centuries", Chemical Heritage Foundation, Philadelphia, USA, 4-6 October 2012. Organized by Ursula Klein (Max-Planck-Institute for History of Science, Berlin) and Carsten Reinhardt.