Chemical Society

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Chemical Society


(full name, D. I. Mendeleev All-Union Chemical Society), a scientific society under the administration of the All-Union Council of Scientific and Technical Societies of the All-Union Central Council of Trade Unions. It was organized in 1932 by a resolution of the Sixth Mendeleev Congress on General and Applied Chemistry as a voluntary union of specialists in chemistry, including scientists, engineers, technicians, teachers, and production worker-innovators, regardless of their affiliation.

The D. I. Mendeleev All-Union Chemical Society is the successor to the Russian Chemical Society, which was founded at the University of St. Petersburg in 1868 by a resolution of the chemical section of the First Congress of Russian Naturalists and Physicians and reorganized in 1878 into the Russian Physics and Chemical Society. The rules of the Russian Chemical Society were compiled with the help of D. I. Mendeleev and N. A. Menshutkin, and N. N. Zinin was elected the first president. Menshutkin was the editor from 1869 through 1900 of Zhurnal Russkogo khimicheskogo obshchestva (Journal of the Russian Chemical Society; renamed Zhurnal Russkogo fiziko-khimicheskogo obshchestva [Journal of the Russian Physics and Chemical Society] in 1879). In the period 1868–1917 the society comprised primarily professors and lecturers from institutions of higher education and included few industrial specialists (10–12 percent). The membership numbered 60 in 1869, 129 in 1879, 237 in 1889, 293 in 1899, 364 in 1909, and 565 in 1917. Among the society’s presidents were several outstanding chemists, including A. M. Butlerov (1878–82) and Mendeleev (1883–84, 1891–92, and 1894). Mendeleev, Menshutkin, D. P. Konovalov, M. G. Kucherov, and other scientists presented scientific papers to the society.

After the Great October Socialist Revolution, the society’s membership rose sharply, and the content, form, and volume of its work changed. Its new goals included the encouragement of chemists and other specialists, students, and leading workers to undertake new scientific and engineering projects, the improvement of socialist production and the training of chemistry specialists and industrial workers, and the dissemination of new advances in chemistry among the workers. Research, technical, and specialized sections, committees, commissions, and teams are active in coordinating and developing the scientific efforts and other activities of the members, in developing important joint scientific and engineering projects, and in organizing conferences, meetings, and other functions of the central and regional organizations. The public universities for technical progress, which offer advanced training in chemistry and chemical engineering to the society’s members, are quite popular. The society holds Mendeleev congresses on general and applied chemistry jointly with the Academy of Sciences of the USSR and other organizations. There have been 11 such congresses between 1907 (in St. Petersburg) and 1975 (in Alma-Ata), at which many well-known scientists presented papers, including the Soviet scientists A. E. Arbuzov, A. N. Bakh, N. D. Zelinskii, N. S. Kurnakov, L. D. Landau, N. N. Semenov, A. E. Fersman, and V. G. Khlopin and the non-Soviet scientists F. Joliot-Curie, G. Seaborg, R. Robinson, C. Hinshelwood, and A. Todd. The proceedings of the Mendeleev congresses are published as collections.

The D. I. Mendeleev All-Union Chemical Society also holds conferences, symposia, and meetings on specific topics and organizes discussions, often with the participation of other scientific and industrial institutions.

The D. I. Mendeleev All-Union Chemical Society organizes scientific and engineering competitions among its members. Since 1965, the society, jointly with the presidium of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, has been awarding, to winners of competitions, the D. I. Mendeleev Gold Medal for research in chemistry and chemical engineering of theoretical or practical importance. The society’s presidium, together with the industrial ministries and trade unions, annually reviews the completion of plans for the introduction of new research and technological advances into the national economy and the implementation of measures for improving the technical level, quality, and reliability of chemical products.

The society has 86 local divisions in various republics and major cities of the USSR. Its membership numbers (1976) about 320,000, as well as more than 140,000 junior chemists from secondary schools.

The society publishes Zhurnal Vsesoiuznogo khimicheskogo obshchestva im. D. I. Mendeleeva (Journal of the D. I. Mendeleev All-Union Chemical Society; six issues annually) and the journal Kauchuk i rezina (Raw and Cured Rubber; jointly with the Ministry of the Petrochemical and Oil-refining Industry of the USSR).


Kozlov, V. V. Ocherki istorii khimicheskikh obshchestv SSSR. Moscow, 1958.
Kozlov, V. V. Vsesoiuznoe khimicheskoe obshchestvo im. D. I. Mendeleeva, 1868–1968. Moscow, 1971.
Vsesoiuznoe khimicheskoe obshchestvo im. D. I. Mendeleeva: Informatsiia i obmen opytom. Moscow, 1972.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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