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Cecile Dreiss 2Colloid science is a very broad and dynamic topic, spanning a wide range of areas within soft matter, from classical dispersions and surfactants, to biological interfaces and biocolloids, nanoparticles for drug delivery, formulation science, self-assembled systems, ‘smart’ materials and active matter. We are keen to hear from anyone with an interest in colloid science: chemists, engineers, physicists, biologists, pharmacists, food scientists - and we welcome you to our meetings!

This committee has a long history. The CSCG (SCI) was founded in 1958 by Sir Eric Rideal to support the growing importance of colloids and surface chemistry in industry. In 1971, Ron Ottewill, Geoff Parfitt and Dennis Haydon created the CISG within the Faraday Society, in response to the increasing number of colloid centres within academia. In 2002 the two groups joined to form the "Joint Colloids Group" (JCG) and provide a coherent focus for the UK colloid and interface science community, both in academia and industry.

The Joint Colloids Group runs various scientific events, from one-day meetings to a triennial multi-day international conference (UK Colloids, since 2011). We also support bursaries for attendance at UK and worldwide meetings through the Rideal Trust. We administer three awards: the McBain Medal, the Thomas Graham Lecture and the Rideal Lecture, which recognise researchers through the different stages of their career (further detail can be found on this website).

Your support, input and suggestions are highly appreciated, whether as a speaker, delegate or sponsor, an established scientist, a PhD student or an early career researcher. If you are interested in becoming involved, please do contact us. We look forward to meeting you at our events.

Cécile Dreiss, Chair of the Joint Colloids Group

UK/Australia exchange bursary to attend ACIS 2019, Hobart, Australia

Funded by the Joint Colloid Group (CISG/CSCG)


The Joint Colloid Group is offering a bursary for UK-based Early Career Researchers in colloid and interface science (10 years after PhD) to attend ACIS 2019.

The 9th biennial Australian Colloid and Interface Symposium (ACIS) will be held in Hobart, Tasmania, from 3 to 7 February 2019. ACIS provides a key opportunity for colloid, surface and interface scientists working worldwide to share their findings, network and discuss advancements in their fields of research.

ACIS has sponsored one Australian ECR to attend the inaugural Early Career Colloid meeting (ECColloids2018) to be held at the University of Sheffield, UK on the 17-18 September 2018. To strengthen links between the UK and Australia and reciprocate this initiative, the Joint Colloid Group is offering a £2,000 bursary to sponsor attendance of an Early Career Researcher (ECR, within 10 years of PhD) to ACIS 2019, the costs going towards travel, accommodation and registration. To gain maximum advantage from attendance, the bursary recipient should visit a local laboratory/research group in Australia during their visit.

It is also expected that the bursary recipient will present at the ACIS 2019 meeting – preferably an oral presentation, but as this cannot be guaranteed a poster presentation would be accepted, either way, abstract submission is mandatory.

Support is limited to members of the CISG/CSCG (RSC/SCI).

UK-based ECRs are encouraged to attend the inaugural Early Career Colloid meeting (ECColloids2018) to be held at the University of Sheffield, on the 17-18 September 2018, where we plan to announce the award of this bursary.



Application deadline: 10th September 2018

ACIS abstract deadline: 13th September 2018 (please regularly check website for updates)

Applications (and questions) should be sent to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with ‘UK/Australia exchange bursary’ in the subject line. Check our website for up-to-date information.

Proof of presentation/attendance at ACIS2019 must be provided for receipt of the bursary

The successful applicant will be expected to produce a short report after attendance to ACIS2019 and lab experience, to be posted on the Joint Colloid Group website.

Selection criteria: UK-based applicants (within 10 years of PhD) will be selected based on the quality of their research and abstract submitted to ACIS, fit to the remit of colloid and interface science, evidence of future promise, and a well-articulated vision of the benefits of their visit to Australia (both ACIS 2019 and proposed host laboratory). Applicants nearer the end of their PhD will be given preference over those who are already established.

Applicant’s full name

Applicant’s current institution and position

Applicant’s date of award of PhD (< 10 years)

Applicant’s CISG/CSCG status (incl. membership number)

Abstract submitted to ACIS (and proof of submission)

Current area of research and future research plans (max 300 words)

Briefly describe the benefits to be derived from attending ACIS2019 and visiting a host laboratory in Australia (maximum 300 words). Please also include evidence of acceptance by the host lab as a formal invitation or by an email from the laboratory PI. Provide dates if known

Early Career Colloids 2018 banner ad

 Inaugural Early Career Colloid meeting

A two-day meeting for recent appointees in colloid and interface science, 17–18 September 2018, Sheffield

The 2018 Early Career Colloid (ECC) meeting brings together colloid scientists from industry and academia to provide a forum for discussion, networking and facilitate knowledge exchange.

This two-day meeting in Sheffield on 17–18 September is aimed at researchers in the field of colloids and interface science who are within 10 years of their first appointment. Academics, industrialists, research fellows and postdocs are all invited.

The conference will incorporate plenary lectures from Prof. Peter Dowding (Infineum) and Prof. Steven Armes (University of Sheffield). It will include symposia covering a broad range of subjects in colloid science, networking opportunities, as well as panel discussions to encourage collaboration, stimulate discussions and provide an open forum for advice. Coffee, lunch and poster sessions and a conference dinner will allow attendees to build on their collaborative network and benefit from peer exchange.

We encourage early career scientists to submit an abstract for a contributed oral presentation or poster. Abstracts will be competitively assessed.

  • Oral abstract submission deadline: 10 August 2018
  • Poster abstract submission deadline: 24 August 2018
  • Registration deadline: 24 August 2018
  • Cost: £30 RSC/SCI members, £40 non-members (includes cost of refreshments during the meeting)

Please visit the conference website for more information on the conference programme, confirmed invited speakers and venue and follow the ECC group on Twitter @ECColloid.

This conference has been made possible through generous support from the Royal Society of Chemistry and SCI Joint Colloid Committee. Sponsorship has also been provided by Synthomer and the RSC Journals Polymer Chemistry and Soft Matter.

Conference organisers: Dr Gemma-Louise Davies (University College London), Dr Lee Fielding (University of Manchester), Dr Fiona Hatton (University of Sheffield) and Dr Kirsty Stark (University of Leeds).

McBain award symposium

Celebrating the achievements of our early career award winner, Valeria Garbin, 11 December 2018, London

The 2018 McBain award symposium will be held on Tuesday, 11 December 2018 at the SCI in London.

The symposium is directed at researchers from colloid chemistry, soft matter physics and chemical engineering backgrounds who are working in functional, responsive, and self-healing materials; controlled release; tuneable soft materials and soft actuation. The meeting will focus on fundamental aspects that underpin applications in formulations, catalysis, soft robotics, and more!

The keynote speaker is Dr Valeria Garbin of Imperial College London, the 2018 recipient of the McBain Medal, who will talk on “Making and breaking colloidal assemblies: using chemical, physical, and mechanical stimuli to control soft matter”. Joining her are Bernie Binks (Hull), Paul Clegg (Edinburgh), Lorenzo Botto (Queen Mary), Stefan Bon (Warwick), Erika Eiser (Cambridge) and Lucio Isa (ETH).

The cost of early-bird registration, available through Wednesday, 10 October 2018, starts at just £20.

For more details or to register, please visit the SOCI page for this event.

mibio2018 banner2

8th Annual MIBio Conference

MIBio 2018: Stability of Biopharmaceuticals – From Molecular Interactions to Successful Products

Thursday 15th November Downing College, Cambridge

The MIBio conference series engages world leading experts from industry and academia in a discussion in how the latest molecular interaction based discoveries can be exploited in biopharmaceutical formulation to produce more effective, patient-friendly and safer therapeutic products.

With growing competition in the market, patient-centric product strategies, an increasing variety of products in development and more complex regulatory requirements, the demand for formulation of therapeutic proteins are increasing. In addition, the formulation patent landscape is becoming more complicated which further contributes to the challenge of development robust dosage forms. MIBio 2018 will focus on discussing these challenges as well as strategies to overcome them, particularly focusing on formulation, drug product development and device and regulatory strategies.We expect more than 100 delegates from industry and academia to create an interesting and stimulating event fostering new collaborations and discoveries that will help steer the development of the next generation formulation technologies. We will be inviting abstracts for poster submissions and welcome applications for sponsor and exhibitor slots on the day.

MIBio 2018 is organised by the Formulation Science and Technology Group (FSTG) and the Joint Colloids Group (SCI) of the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) together with the Academy of Pharmaceutical Sciences (APS). The event will be held on 15th November 2018, Howard Theatre, Downing College, Cambridge, UK.

To register please follow this link: 

Tharwat Tadros

Obituary: Tharwat F. Tadro 

Tharwat Tadros died on 23rd May 2018. He was born in 1937 in Kena, near Luxor, in Upper Egypt. He subsequently attended Alexandria University where he obtained a first-class honours B.Sc. Degree in 1956 – aged 19! He then carried out postgraduate research in electrochemistry with Professor Sadek in Alexandria., after which he was appointed to a lectureship in chemistry at the same university. In 1966 he took up a two-year visiting co-worker position with Professor Hans Lyklema at the Agricultural University in Wageningen, the Netherlands. There he worked on the electrochemical properties of the porous silica /aqueous electrolyte interface. Afterwards, instead of returning to his position in Alexandria, Tharwat accepted a job with TNO in Delft. The main reason was that in Wageningen he had met Wikie Buter, whom he married in 1969 in Wassenaar. Later that year they moved to the UK, where Tharwat began his long association with ICI Plant Protection Division at Jealott’s Hill in Berkshire. 

Tharwat soon established a strong product development team at Jealott’s Hill. Moreover, he was encouraged at that time to make contacts with academic groups to pursue more fundamental studies. Many such long-lasting collaborations were set up, including with Bristol, Imperial College, Liverpool, Nottingham, Reading, Wageningen, Groningen, Barcelona, Sofia and Crackow. This produced a great many PhD graduates and postdocs, whom Tharwat co-supervised. He also had many UK and overseas visitors as research co-workers in his laboratory. Tharwat was appointed as a visiting professor in at least three universities: Imperial College, Bristol and Reading. He gained a strong international reputation as a leading authority on many aspects of both pure and applied colloid and interface science. He published around 300 papers and authored, co-authored or edited some 20 books in the field! He was frequently asked to give both individual lectures and industrial teaching causes in this area. His lecturing style was unforgettable and unique, but much appreciated by those listening! For example, in the old days, when overhead transparencies were the main form of visual aid, Tharwat would arrive at a venue and pull out a great wad of such transparencies from his briefcase. He would then select from this collection, as the lecture proceeded, those that he thought would be suitable for the topic and audience he was addressing. He would frequently modify a transparency or construct a new one as he went along!

When some of the former speciality chemical businesses of ICI were split off, as Zeneca, Tharwat stayed on at Jealotts Hill in the newly formed Zeneca Agrochemicals business. This subsequently became the present-day Syngenta Company. Even after he formally retired in 1994, Tharwat remained as a consultant for this company and others and continued to give short-courses on many topics, travelling all over the world. He was much in demand! Tharwat was President of the International Association of Colloid and Interface Scientists from 1990 to 1992. He served on the SCI surface and colloid chemistry section committee for some 15 years, being chair from 1987 to 1989. He was presented with a number of awards and medals. These included: the RSC Colloid and Surface Chemistry Medal in 1989; the RSC Silver Medal and Industrial Lectureship in 1990; and the SCI Founders Lecture (now the joint RSC/SCI Rideal Lecture) in 1991. Tharwat and Wikie were very proud of their family in the UK. Tharwat also strongly supported his family back in Egypt.  Moreover, he was truly one of the” father figures” of colloid and surface science. Many people around the world, not least myself, have reason to be grateful to him for his continued support and friendship down the years.
Brian Vincent, Bristol University.

Sir Eric Rideal Travel Bursaries

The Sir Eric Rideal Travel Bursaries are a joint bursary between the Royal Society of Chemistry and the Society of Chemical Industry. It provides funds for attendance at a conference in the field of colloid and surface science.

Sir Eric Rideal (1890–1974) was the founding Chair of the RSC Colloid and Interface Science Group.

The Rideal Trust annually offers financial assistance to promising academic research workers in the general field of colloid and surface science to attend conferences and/or to visit relevant research institutions.

Awards of up to £500 will be made on a competitive basis to assist with travel and/or subsistence and/or conference registration fees.

There are two closing dates for applications each year:

  • 15 April (for travel planned between 1 June and 31 December)
  • 15 October (for travel planned between 1 December and 30 June).

Please see the Rideal Bursary page on the SCI’s website for specifics.

Follow the Joint Colloids Group on Twitter

The Joint Colloids group has established a Twitter handle. Follow us on @ColloidsGroup to keep up-to-date with news and events for the UK colloids and surface science community.

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You can become a member by joining one of the two groups:

SCI Colloid & Surface Chemistry Group (CSCG).

RSC Colloid & Interface Science Group (CISG).

The former is open to SCI members only. The latter is open both to RSC members and associates AND to scientists and engineers who belong, either, to a chartered professional or learned body from outside the chemical sciences, or to another chemical society with whom the RSC has entered into an international partnership agreement approved by RSC Council. Non-RSC members of CISG pay RSC a small annual fee to cover administration and postage.


For information on how to become a member of the Society of Chemical Industry (SCI) or Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) please see the links below: 

Non-members of RSC wishing to join CISG should contact the RSC Membership Dept. (contact details at, asking to join the Colloid & Interface Science Interest Group, only, and mentioning their own affiliation.  The membership administration fee is £10 currently. In case of difficulty please contact a member of the Joint Committee.