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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

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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.

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.