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Committee on Teaching Chemistry

Number: 025/34/89

Title: International Network for Locally Produced Low Cost Equipment

Coordinator(s): R.S. Lamba, K.V. Sane´┐Ż and J.D. Bradley

Remarks: Interaction with UNESCO
Access The Low Cost Equipment Project Website at <http://www.lce.org/>

Practical work in chemistry is generally agreed to be a vital part of the subject. In teaching chemistry it helps to motivate learners and creates awareness that chemistry is a human activity. IUPAC must therefore be concerned that learners of chemistry at all levels enjoy practical work. Unfortunately it is frequently not offered because of lack of equipment, facilities and consumables, or in some cases lack of teacher competence. This is especially the case in developing countries. This project, initiated under the leadership of Prof. Sane (India), is addressing this problem by designing low-cost equipment based on low-cost electronic components and by establishing a low-cost manufacturing operation. This idea has been introduced to most continents already, but there remains a great deal of dissemination and invention to be done. Because of the central significance of providing practical experiences to students of chemistry everywhere, IUPAC must remain involved as a partner. CTC can assist through information exchange, organising of workshops, international advocacy, etc.

With the agreement of UNESCO, coordination of this network has been transferred from Prof. Sane (India) to Prof. Lamba (Puerto Rico). In addition a UNESCO-associated Centre was inaugurated in Puerto Rico in July, 1997, with Prof. Lamba as Director. The Chairman of CTC spoke at the inauguration on the global role of IUPAC.

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