News Release

Elsevier announces the winner of the first Ahmed Zewail Prize in Molecular Sciences

Professor David Buckingham of Cambridge University awarded for pioneering contributions to the molecular sciences

Grant and Award Announcement


Amsterdam, 4 October 2006 – The Chief Editors of the leading international journal Chemical Physics Letters are pleased to announce that the first Ahmed Zewail Prize in Molecular Sciences has been awarded to Professor David Buckingham from Cambridge University, UK, for his pioneering contributions to the understanding of optical, electric and magnetic properties of molecules. The Prize consists of a monetary award of $20,000 and will be presented during the 2007 Spring meeting of the American Chemical Society, in Chicago, USA.

David Buckingham has made many original theoretical and experimental contributions to the molecular sciences. His research has provided a fundamental understanding of how molecules are perturbed by electromagnetic radiation, magnetic and electric fields, and other molecules.

Nobel Laureate Professor Ahmed Zewail, in whose name the Prize is honoured, remarked: "Very few scientists have impacted molecular sciences with the originality, breadth and depth of David Buckingham, who epitomizes the best in clarity of thought, sincerity and magnanimity. I am delighted with this recognition of David for his brilliant contributions in a career rich with scientific and human achievements."

Dr. Patrick Jackson, Publishing Director at Elsevier, commented: "I am delighted with the choice of Professor Buckingham as the inaugural Ahmed Zewail Prize winner. I thank both the nominators and the 8 leading scientists in the Voting Committee, who helped the Chief Editors in making such an exceptional choice from a field of 40, very strong, nominations."


About David Buckingham

David Buckingham was born in Sydney, Australia, on 28 January 1930. He obtained a B.Sc. and M. Sc. from the University of Sydney and a Ph. D. from the University of Cambridge under the supervision of John Pople. He had academic posts at the University of Oxford and Bristol before taking up the Chair of Chemistry at Cambridge in 1969. He is now Professor Emeritus at Cambridge. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society, a Foreign Associate of the National Academy of Sciences, a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a Foreign Member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and a Member of the International Academy of Quantum Molecular Science. He has been Chief Editor of various scientific journals, among which Chemical Physics Letters from 1978 until 1999. For further information on David Buckingham: and

About the Ahmed Zewail Prize in Molecular Sciences

The Ahmed Zewail Prize in Molecular Sciences is a new biennial award sponsored by Elsevier in collaboration with the international journal Chemical Physics Letters. Named for one of the journal's Chief Editors Professor Zewail, who received the 1999 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, the Prize is awarded to individual scientists who have made significant and creative contributions of a fundamental nature to any of the disciplines of molecular sciences. The winner's research activities may cover theoretical and/or experimental aspects of the studies in all phases of matter and biological systems. The Prize consists of a monetary award of $20,000, a Gold Medal and a certificate, and will be presented in person at a special symposium during the Annual Spring meetings of the American Chemical Society. For more information, see the Ahmed Zewail Prize link on:

About Chemical Physics Letters

Chemical Physics Letters is an international rapid communications journal publishing the results of frontier research in chemical physics and physical chemistry, molecular sciences, materials science and biological systems. The Journal celebrates its 40th year of publication in 2007. The Chief Editors of the Journal are currently Professor David Clary (University of Oxford, UK), Professor Villy Sundström (Lund University, Sweden) and Professor Ahmed Zewail (California Institute of Technology, USA). The Chief Editors are supported by an Advisory Editorial Board of more than 100 leading scientists. For more information:

About Elsevier

Elsevier is a world-leading publisher of scientific, technical and medical information products and services. Working in partnership with the global science and health communities, Elsevier's 7,000 employees in over 70 offices worldwide publish more than 2,000 journals and 1,900 new books per year, in addition to offering a suite of innovative electronic products, such as ScienceDirect (, MD Consult (, Scopus (, bibliographic databases, and online reference works.

Elsevier ( is a global business headquartered in Amsterdam, The Netherlands and has offices worldwide. Elsevier is part of Reed Elsevier Group plc (, a world-leading publisher and information provider. Operating in the science and medical, legal, education and business-to-business sectors, Reed Elsevier provides high-quality and flexible information solutions to users, with increasing emphasis on the Internet as a means of delivery. Reed Elsevier's ticker symbols are REN (Euronext Amsterdam), REL (London Stock Exchange), RUK and ENL (New York Stock Exchange).

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