Remarks by the APS Director of International Affairs

Amy Flatten


The APS Office of International Affairs (INTAF) has enjoyed a strong partnership with the Forum on International Physics (FIP), with several members of the FIP Executive Committee serving on a key advisory body to INTAF – the Committee on International Scientific Affairs (CISA). Together, INTAF, FIP & CISA have built a portfolio of ongoing, sustainable programs that serve APS members and physicists worldwide. Some of these programs offer travel grants to graduate students, postdocs and professors. These programs can enhance their ongoing collaborations, help build new networks and partnerships, or bring speakers for units’ sessions at APS annual meetings.

As deadlines for these opportunities will be fast approaching this fall, I want to use my remarks in the FIP newsletter to highlight these opportunities, and encourage you to apply. For those professors who may be reading this, we ask you to encourage your graduate students and post-docs to avail themselves of these programs. If you are planning to apply yourself, consider asking your student or postdoc to apply as well, so that they may accompany you on your travels.

Brazil-U.S. Exchange Program

Application Deadline for U.S. Applicants: 1 November 2013

Brazil imageThe Sociedade Brasileira de Física (SBF) and the American Physical Society (APS) are pleased to sponsor an exchange program for physics graduate students and professors in the U.S. and Brazil. Post-docs in the U.S. can also apply for support to undertake opportunities in Brazil. The Brazil-U.S. Professorship/Lectureship Program funds physicists in Brazil and the United States wishing to visit overseas to teach a short course or deliver a lecture series in the other country. The professorship grants are up to USD $4,000. Through the Brazil-U.S. Physics Graduate Student & Post-doc Visitation Program, graduate students and post-docs in the U.S. and Brazil can apply for funds to travel to the other country to pursue a breadth of opportunities in physics. Such opportunities might include:
  1. Attending a short-course or summer institute;
  2. Visiting with a professor in his/her field of study;
  3. Working temporarily in a laboratory; or,
  4. Undertaking another opportunity that the applicant and host believe is worthy of travel support.

Grants for students and postdocs are up to USD $3,000. The APS funds 10 graduate students or postdocs each year, along with 5 professors traveling from the United States. (The SBF funds a similar number of awards for applicants traveling from Brazil.) Calls for proposals are issued each fall and spring and the next deadline for proposals from U.S. applicants is 1 November 2013. See program application guidelines.

U.S.-India Travel Grant Program

Now Accepting Proposals: Deadline is 1 November 2013

India imageThe Indo-U.S. Science and Technology Forum (IUSSTF) sponsors and APS administers the exchange of physicists, physics graduate students, and post-docs between India and the United States.  Similar to the Brazil program mentioned above, the APS-IUSSTF Professorship Awards permit physics professors from India and the U.S. to deliver short courses or a lecture series in the other country. The APS-IUSSTF Physics Student & Post-doc Visitation Program is intended for physics graduate students and post-docs who wish to pursue opportunities in physics such as to attend a summer institute or work temporarily in a laboratory. The IUSSTF provides funds that enable 10 students and 6 professors (total from U.S. and India) each year.   Calls for proposals are issued each fall and spring and the next application deadline is 1 November 2013.

ITGAP logo

Application Deadline soon to be announced by FIP (look for more info this fall)

The APS International Travel Grant Award Program (ITGAP) was established in 2004 by the Forum on International Physics to promote international scientific collaborations between developed and developing country scientists. The ITGAP continues to grow and flourish and now enjoys financial support from 14 APS units, as well as the U.S. Liaison Committee to the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics (IUPAP). Grantees are awarded up to $2,000 for travel and lodging expenses for international travel while visiting a collaborator.

Of the many teams that have reported results after the completion of the ITGAP award, all continue to collaborate and many have had additional face-to-face meetings. The collaborations have resulted in publications, conference papers and presentations, as well as book chapters, with some planning to publish additional articles together in the near future. Some awardees also initiated new research projects (including other new collaborations) and developed new connections between students and colleagues at their collaborators’ institutions. Others have reported that the grant was crucial for the developing country collaborator to publish their first article in a “Western” journal and to bring a colleague into the mainstream international physics community. More information on the ITGAP is available on the International Travel Grant Award Program web page.

Marshak & Beller Lectureships – Call for Nominations from Unit Chairs coming this fall 2013

The Society continues to bring international physicists to speak at APS meetings through both the Marshak and Beller Lectureship Awards, which support distinguished physicists from the developed and developing countries respectively. The Beller Lectureship was endowed by Esther Hoffman Beller for the purpose of bringing distinguished physicists from outside the United States as invited speakers at APS annual meetings. The Marshak Lectureship, endowed by Ruth Marshak in honor of her late husband and former APS president, Robert Marshak, provides travel support for physicists from "developing nations or the Eastern Bloc" invited to speak at APS annual meetings.

Each fall, the Chair of CISA and the Director of International Affairs solicits APS unit Chairs for nominations of outstanding speakers from outside of the United States, whom they have invited to speak during their sessions at the March and April meetings. Along with the travel funds of $2000, the international speakers will be honored in the meeting program and/or other printed materials as Beller or Marshak Lectureship recipients.

The opportunities above are just a few of the programs developed by the APS International Office, in partnership with FIP and CISA. Please visit our website for more information on our joint meetings with other national physical societies, advice on visa issues, APS human rights activities and our other expanding efforts across the globe. Most importantly, please don’t hesitate to contact me directly — I’d welcome the chance to hear from my colleagues in the Forum on International Physics.,

Dr. Amy Flatten is Director of International Affairs at the American Physical Society.

Disclaimer - The articles and opinion pieces found in this issue of the APS Forum on International Physics Newsletter are not peer refereed and represent solely the views of the authors and not necessarily the views of the APS.