Progress Report on Lehn Institute of Functional Materials, Sun Yat-Sen University (Sept. 2018)
Lehn功能材料研究所作为中山大学国际化人才培养与科研协作创新机制探索的试点和示范单位，在学校各级领导和职能部门的关心、支持下，在许宁生校长的多方协调和大力推动下，由诺贝尔奖得主法国科学家Jean-Marie Lehn、德国科学院院士Dieter Fenske、中国科学院院士陈小明教授等人于2010年携手创立。2012年研究所举行了隆重的启动仪式，广东省政府、教育厅、省外专局、省政府外事办领导，法国驻广州总领事馆总领事、德国驻广州总领事馆副领事、德意志学术交流中心驻广州办事处主任等嘉宾出席了启动会，同期举办了由来自美国、德国、法国、瑞士、香港、大陆等地的数十名国际顶尖学者参加的第一届国际先进功能材料研讨会。
As a pilot and demonstration unit of Sun Yat-Sen University (SYSU) to explore new mechanisms for training of internationalized talents and coordination on scientific research, Lehn Institute of Functional Materials (LIFM) was jointly founded by Jean-Marie Lehn, a French scientist and Nobel Prize winner, Dieter Fenske, an academician of German Academy of Sciences, Prof. Xiaoming Chen, an academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences, and the like in 2010. The establishment of LIFM was facilitated by President Ningsheng Xu through coordination and promotion, winning the attention and support of SYSU’s leaders and functional departments at every level. In 2012, the grand kick-off ceremony of LIFM was held and attended by the leadership of the People’s Government of Guangdong Province, Department of Education of Guangdong Province, Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs of Guangdong Province and Foreign Affairs Office, People’s Government of Guangdong Province, Consul-General of Consulate General of France in Guangzhou, Vice-Consul of Consulate General of Germany in Guangzhou, Director of Guangzhou Office of Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst (DAAD) and other guests, while the International Advanced Functional Materials Symposium was held and attended by dozens of top scholars from the U.S., Germany, France, Switzerland, Hong Kong and Mainland China.
During the development of nearly two years upon establishment, LIFM obtained great support and investment from SYSU, Department of Education of Guangdong Province and the People’s Government of Guangdong Province, introduced a number of scholars with international influence, held several high-level academic exchanges, finished the preliminary establishment of a world-class instrument platform and research office, promoted the internationalized talent training mode steadily, and enabled a talent training and scientific research working mechanism featuring « a two-way interaction mode with regular dispatch of foreign PIs to LIFM, assistance and guidance of respective supervisors and research assistants as well as regular external training of graduates and postdoctoral researchers » to take shape. By promoting standardization and institutionalization in such aspects as scientific research team building, introduction of high-quality talents, establishment of laboratory and instrument sharing platform, international collaboration on scientific research and joint training of graduates, LIFM developed a relatively strong international influence. So far, an international joint research structure with a high-quality and internationalized research team, advanced instruments and devices, regular training of internationalized talents, extensive exchange and cooperation all over the world as well as strong domestic and international influence has shaped up, supporting the development of first-level disciplines such as Chemistry and Materials, playing an important role in the implementation of National Basic Research Program of China (973 Program) and other significant research plans through international cooperation and international influence as a remarkable achievement, which is declared and organized by State Key Laboratory and 2011 Collaborative Innovation Center respectively, and making important contributions to SYSU’s global ranking in respect of Chemistry and talent introduction.
I. Introduction to the Progress of International Joint Research Institute
LIFM is implementing various tasks, the main progress of which is as follows:
1、研究方向布局：结合国家和地方在能源、环境、材料等战略性高新领域和重大需求，研究所在超分子化学、材料化学、纳米化学、能源与催化化学、光化学与材料、晶体工程前沿领域设立6个研究方向，分别聘任法国斯特拉斯堡大学J-M Lehn（诺贝尔奖获得者）、德国卡尔斯鲁厄理工学院D. Fenske（德国科学院院士）、瑞士巴塞尔大学M. Mayor（该校自然科学委员会主任）、瑞士联邦理工学院H.Grützmacher（ETH，欧洲顶尖大学）、香港大学任詠华院士、加拿大滑铁卢大学J. Pawliszyn (加拿大皇家科学院院士) 和中山大学陈小明院士担任学术带头人PI）。
1. Research Directions: In light of national and local demands in such strategic high-tech fields as energy, environment and materials, LIFM establishes six research directions including Supramolecular Chemistry, Materials Chemistry, Nanochemistry, Energy and Catalytic Chemistry, Photochemistry and Materials as well as Frontiers in Crystal Engineering, and engages J-M Lehn, a Nobel Prize winner from University of Strasbourg, D. Fenske, an academician of German Academy of Sciences from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, M. Mayor, the Director of Natural Sciences Committee of University of Basel, H.Grützmacher from Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), a top university in Europe, Vivian Wing-Wah Yam, an academician from University of Hong Kong, J. Pawliszyn, an academician of the Academy of Science of the Royal Society of Canada from University of Waterloo and Xiaoming Chen, an academician from SYSU to be Principal Investigators (PIs) of each direction.
2、研究队伍与人才引进：除以上研究方向负责人，研究所先后聘请了一些国际知名学者担任客座、兼职教授加强研究力量，包括2016诺贝尔化学奖获得者法国科学院院士Jean-Pierre Sauvage、美国德克萨斯A&M大学Joe Hongcai Zhou教授、欧洲膜技术研究所Mihail-Dumitru Barboiu教授（2015年获得了国家外专“千人计划”短期项目）；聘请了德国卡尔斯鲁厄理工学院Olaf Fuhr和Andreas Echhofer担任兼职副教授，作为外籍PI的科研助手；配备了高水平的中方研究人员进行科研协作，包括苏成勇（杰青、长江）、童明良（杰青、长江）、张杰鹏（杰青、长江）、匡代彬（珠江学者）教授等。2014年引进了香港大学任詠华院士及其助手李永光博士。2015年引进了中组部“青年千人”李光琴博士。
2. Research Team and Talent Introduction: In addition to the said PIs, LIFM engages some internationally recognized scholars to be visiting professors and adjunct professors, including Jean-Pierre Sauvage, a Nobel Prize winner and academician of French Academy of Sciences, Prof. Joe Hongcai Zhou from Texas A&M University and Prof. Mihail-Dumitru Barboiu from European Institute of Membranes, who was awarded the Recruitment Program of Global Experts (Short Term) in 2015; Olaf Fuhr and Andreas Echhofer from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology to be adjunct associate professors and research assistants to foreign PIs; and some other high-quality Chinese researchers including Chengyong Su (Distinguished Young Scholar and Yangtze River Scholar), Mingliang Tong (Distinguished Young Scholar and Yangtze River Scholar), Jiepeng Zhang (Distinguished Young Scholar and Yangtze River Scholar) and Prof. Daibin Kuang (Pearl River Scholar) to assist in various scientific researches, for the purpose of strengthening the research team. In 2014, Vivian Wing-Wah Yam, an academician from University of Hong Kong and her assistant Dr. Yongguang Li were introduced. In 2015, Doctor Guangqin Li, who is selected for the Recruitment Program for Young Professionals initiated by the CCCPC Organization Department, was introduced, too.
3. Establishment of Instrument Sharing Platform and Research Office: Supported by SYSU and Guangdong Province, a public instrument platform and high-standard research office, the worth of which is more than RMB 30 million, with advanced equipment and complete functions has taken shape. The laboratory zone of LIFM covers an area of about 600 square meters, comprising 3 synthesis labs and 5 instrument rooms. In light of the demands of LIFM’s research directions together with the research needs for college and school-related research directions, LIFM has purchased a good number of state-of-the-art and valuable instruments including high-resolution electron microscopes, dual-microfocus single-crystal diffractometers, powder diffractometers, high-resolution mass spectrometers and superconducting nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometers, most of which have been put in operation, and some additional instruments and devices are to be purchased in the short run. So far, LIFM has shared all of the operating instruments on and off campus, established a website for making reservations, developed a standardized management and operation mechanism, and provided the School of Chemistry with a large instrument platform, which is most advanced and open, giving great support to the establishment of first-level chemistry-related disciplines and high-level scientific research.
4. Talent Training: A mode featuring « Foreign PI + Chinese PI + Research Assistant (Junior Professor) » in combination with « Foreign Adjunct and Visiting High-Level Scholars + Chinese High-Quality Scholars » is basically applied to every research direction, and a high-efficient research team is formed, to train young research talents, postdoctoral researchers and doctoral students, and to facilitate LIFM’s talent team building. So far, LIFM’s foreign supervisors have recruited 9 postdoctoral researchers and 30 doctoral students, where 4 postdoctoral researchers and 12 doctoral students have been sent abroad in succession for joint training, 2 foreign postdoctoral researchers, 4 postdoctoral researchers graduating from foreign well-known universities and 1 foreign exchange student. Among them, 12 doctoral students have graduated, 4 postdoctoral researchers are working in postdoctoral stations, 1 outstanding postdoctoral researcher is sponsored by the state for studying abroad, and 2 postdoctoral researchers are serving LIFM.
5、科研工作：研究所各科研方向的研究工作正在逐步开展并走向正轨，近年陆续在国际顶尖化学和材料杂志Science, Nat. Commun., Chem. Soc. Rev., J. Am. Chem. Soc., Angew. Chem., Adv. Mater., Chem. Sci.等发表了高水平学术论文200多篇；申请一些国际和国内专利；开展多方位的学术交流，举办了系列高水平国际学术研讨会。
5. Scientific Research: LIFM is carrying out various tasks based on the research directions steadily. In recent years, more than 200 high-quality academic papers were published on some internationally-renowned magazines and journals of chemistry and materials like Science, Nat. Commun., Chem. Soc. Rev., J. Am. Chem. Soc., Angew. Chem., Adv. Mater. and Chem. Sci.; some domestic and international patents were applied; and a series of high-standard international symposia were held to promote multi-vector academic exchanges.
6. Daily Operation and Management of LIFM: Respective PIs are responsible for directing LIFM’s scientific research tasks, either on the spot or remotely; and Deputy Directors, Prof. Fenske and Prof. Chengyong Su, are responsible for LIFM’s daily operation and specific management under the guidance of Honorary Director Jean-Marie Lehn and Director Xiaoming Chen. LIFM also engages Jijun Jiang, Dawei Wang and Yongguang Li to deal with LIFM’s daily concerns and Yingzi Wang to act as Executive Secretary. A daily management and operation mechanism for scientific research, administration, foreign affairs, laboratory, equipment, enrollment, training, exchange and the like is established and improved gradually.
II. Main Achievements in Recent Years
Since its formal inception in October 2012, with the active engagement and support of its foreign professors, LIFM has published more than 200 signed papers on internationally-renowned academic journals; while its members have published more than 50 ESI highly-cited papers. As the most important unit producing chemistry-related ESI highly-cited papers in SYSU, LIFM not only made great contributions to SYSU’s global ranking in respect of Chemistry, but heightened its international influence over the mainstream academic circles.
研究所三位教授在引领各自团队在科研前言开展高水平研究的同时，也积极致力于将研究成果转化为专利或产品，进一步提升Lehn所在功能材料研究与应用方面的水平与能力。其中，Jean-Marie Lehn教授和杨庆远博士，设计合成了一系列全新的基于吡啶酮的单分子白光材料，这类简单的有机小分子在固态时可以发出很强的白光，这非常少见，因此具有很高的价值。并且这些有机分子具有较好的溶解性，合成成本也低，所以是一类具有良好应用前景的单分子白光材料。对于这些研究成果，Jean-Marie Lehn教授和杨庆远博士已经申请了欧洲发明专利(European patent: EP 13306191.1-1462)，并且已经和SOLVAY公司达成了初步合作协议，准备把专利成果转化成生产力。专利的具体信息：
While leading their respective teams in cutting-edge and high-quality scientific researches, three professors from LIFM strive to transform their research achievements into patents or products, and to further improve LIFM’s level and capacity of studying and applying functional materials. Prof. Jean-Marie Lehn and Dr. Qing-Yuan Yang have designed and synthesized a series of new pyridine-based single-molecule white-light materials. These organic small molecules are able to emit strong white light when they are in the state of solid. It is such rare that these organic molecules are of incredibly high value. Besides, with good solubility and low synthesis cost, these single-molecule white-light materials have promising application. With these research achievements, Prof. Jean-Marie Lehn and Dr. Qing-Yuan Yang have applied for European patent (EP 13306191.1-1462) and concluded a preliminary cooperation agreement with SOLVAY for the purpose of transforming such patent into productivity. The specific information of the patent is as follows:
专利名称：新的单分子白光材料；专利号： EP13306191；专利发明人：Jean-Marie Lehn 和Qing-Yuan Yang；专利申请单位：SYSU（中山大学）、UNISTRA（法国斯特拉斯堡大学）和CNRS（法国国家科学研究院）；专利代理机构：CONECTUS；专利申请时间：2013年8月30日。
Title: New Single-Molecule White-Light Materials; Patent No.: EP13306191; Inventor: Jean-Marie Lehn and Qing-Yuan Yang; Applicants: SYSU (Sun Yat-Sen University), UNISTRA (University of Strasbourg) and CNRS (French National Center for Scientific Research); Agent: CONECTUS; Application Date: August 30, 2013.
Prof. Lehn was awarded Guangdong Province: Program for Leading Talents Introduction, the funds of which totaled RMB 5 million, in 2011; Program for Foreign Experts Introduction, the funds of which totaled RMB 760,000, in 2012; and National Natural Science Foundation of China: International (Regional) Cooperation and Exchange Program, the funds of which totaled RMB 2.41 million, in 2017. Furthermore, LIFM is an important unit responsible for Overseas Expertise Introduction Project for Discipline Innovation (« 111 Project »). These programs and funds provide LIFM with critical financial support to its daily operations, international academic exchanges, procurement of instruments and smooth running of research projects.
Recommended and introduced by Prof. Lehn, Prof. Mihail-Dumitru Barboiu, European « Young Investigator Awards » winner and Senior Research Fellow of European Institute of Membranes joined LIFM in 2013 and was awarded the funds for the Recruitment Program of Global Experts (Short Term) in 2015.
With the active engagement and support of Prof. Lehn, Prof. Fenske, Prof. Mayor, Prof. Grützmacher and Prof. Vivian Wing-Wah Yam, LIFM have made some great achievements in such aspects as cooperative research and talent training, in recognition of which, LIFM was recommended by SYSU in applying for « Project of Internation as well as Hong Kong, Macao & Taiwan Science and Technology Cooperation Innovation Platform in Universities in Guangdong Province » and approved by Department of Education of Guangdong Province.
In 2018, LIFM introduced Prof. Guangqin Li, who is selected for the Recruitment Program for Young Professionals and awarded the funds for Pearl River Talent Recruitment Program of Overseas Talents totaling RMB 20 million. With regard to national funds, three instructors, Jijun Jiang, Dawei Wang and Yongguang Li, as well as seven research associates including Zhongshu Li, Zhangwen Wei, Kang Li, Haiping Wang and otherwise have been awarded National Nature Science Foundation of China for Young Scientists. The foreign postdoctoral researcher Robert Langer has been awarded National Nature Science Foundation of China for Foreign Young Scholars.
LIFM boasts several renowned scholars at home and abroad, especially Prof. Lehn and Prof. Fenske who have rather high academic reputation in their respective fields and extensive high-level academic contacts throughout the world. Therefore, with their assistance, LIFM has held three high-quality international conferences and 27 presentations, symposia and lectures attended by foreign experts since its establishment.
其中，2012年举行的“中山大学Lehn功能材料研究所启动仪式暨国际先进功能材料研讨会”汇集了法国驻广州总领事馆总领事Bruno Bisso先生，德国驻广州总领事馆副领事Wolfgang Kessle先生，德意志学术交流中心驻广州办事处主任Thomas Korytko先生、广东省教育厅副厅长丁守庆先生，广东省外国专家局局长覃立模先生，广东省人民政府外事办公室副主任苏才芳女士等重要国内外管理人员，以及来自世界各地的知名学者，包括国外高校的知名教授与国内知名高校的院士等，为Lehn功能材料研究所后续管理、科研工作的顺利开展奠定了良好的基础。在基础上，Lehn功能材料研究所得以成功举办“第二届中山大学国际先进功能材料研讨会暨金属-有机框架相关多孔材料国际研讨会”，集中邀请到当前国外框架多孔材料领域最杰出、最知名的化学家包括美国加州大学伯克利分校Omar Yaghi教授、日本京都大学Susumu Kitagawa教授、美国芝加哥大学的Wenbin Lin教授等知名学者，以及国内的院士如香港大学支志明院士、北京大学高松院士、我校陈小明院士、以及国内“长江学者”、“国家杰出青年科学基金获得者”等学术精英40人。
LIFM Inaugural Ceremony & The International Advanced Functional Materials Symposium, which was held in 2012 and attended by Mr. Bruno Bisso, Consul-General of Consulate General of France in Guangzhou, Mr. Wolfgang Kessle, Vice-Consul of Consulate General of Germany in Guangzhou, Mr. Thomas Korytko, Director of Guangzhou Office of Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst (DAAD), Mr. Shouqing Ding, Deputy Director-General of Department of Education of Guangdong Province, Mr. Limo Qin, Director-General of Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs of Guangdong Province, Ms. Caifang Su, Deputy Director of Foreign Affairs Office, People’s Government of Guangdong Province and other important domestic and foreign officers as well as celebrated scholars from every corner of the world, including recognized professors from foreign colleges and universities as well as academicians from domestic well-known colleges and universities, lays a solid foundation for LIFM’s follow-up management and scientific research. Relying on the foundation, LIFM held the Second International Advanced Functional Materials Conference SYSU & International Symposium on MOF and Related Open Framework Materials successfully, which was attended by 40 academic elites, including the most outstanding and renowned foreign chemists in the field of Porous Framework Materials, such as Prof. Omar Yaghi from University of California, Berkeley, Prof. Susumu Kitagawa from Kyoto University and Prof. Wenbin Lin from University of Chicago, some academicians, such as Chi-Ming Che from University of Hong Kong, Song Gao from Peking University and Xiaoming Chen from SYSU, as well as domestic winners of Yangtze River Scholars Program and National Science Fund for Distinguished Young Scholars.
These high-level and high-quality international conferences as well as academic reports and exchanges delivered by foreign experts visiting LIFM are undoubtedly of great significance for us to grasp new growth points regarding the frontiers of functional materials and new trends of interdisciplinary studies promptly, improve LIFM’s capacity and level of scientific research, facilitate LIFM’s exchange and cooperation with the world, promote LIFM’s standing in international mainstream academic circles, and train a high-quality team staffed by scientific research talents. Furthermore, it has a positive impact on showing and heightening SYSU’s international influence.
总体而言，Lehn功能材料研究所自2010年成立并于2012年底正式启动以来，在国际学术大师Jean-Marie Lehn教授和所长陈小明院士的领导下，研究所建设进展顺利。现已形成了外籍PI定期来所工作、双方导师和研助手协作指导、研究生博士后定期外派联合培养的双向互动式人才培养和科研工作机制；初步建成了高水准的先进仪器公共平台；近年陆续在国际顶尖化学杂志Nat. Commun., Chem. Soc. Rev., JACS, Angew. Chem., Adv. Mater.等发表了系列学术论文；研究所成员发表高引ESI论文超过50篇，成为中山大学化学ESI高引论文最重要的产出单位；举办了系列高水平国际学术研讨会，邀请数十名国际知名学者进行学术交流，国际影响力迅速提升，有力支撑了化学、材料一级学科的建设和高水平科研开展，为提高我校化学学科在《世界大学学术排名》中世界排名做出一定贡献。
Generally speaking, since its establishment in 2010 and its formal inception at the end of 2012, LIFM has been shaping up and progressing smoothly under the leadership of Prof. Jean-Marie Lehn, an international academic master, and Academician Xiaoming Chen, the Director of LIFM. So far, LIFM has developed a talent training and scientific research working mechanism featuring a two-way interaction mode with regular dispatch of foreign PIs to LIFM, assistance and guidance of respective supervisors and research assistants as well as regular external training of graduates and postdoctoral researchers; accomplished the preliminary establishment of a high-standard platform for advanced instrument sharing; published academic papers on some internationally-renowned magazines and journals of chemistry like Nat. Commun., Chem. Soc. Rev., JACS, Angew. Chem. and Adv. Mater. over the past few years; become the most important unit producing chemistry-related ESI highly-cited papers in SYSU, with its members publishing more than 50 ESI highly-cited papers; held a series of high-quality international symposia and invited dozens of internationally-recognized scholars to have academic exchanges, based on which, LIFM improved its international influence rapidly, given great support to the development of first-level disciplines relating to Chemistry and Materials as well as high-quality scientific research, and made contributions to the global ranking of SYSU’s chemistry discipline in Academic Ranking of World Universities.
Lehn所先后承担了一批高层次科研任务，包括国家自然科学基金重大项目、重点项目、国家”973”项目、教育部重点科技项目、广东省领军人才项目、珠江人才计划团队项目及海外英才项目等。近年来主要研究人员的科研总经费达6000万元，获得国家级、省部级等多项奖项，获得授权发明专利8项，在国际顶级专业杂志如Science，Chem. Soc. Rev., Angew. Chem. Int. Edit.、Adv. Mater.、J. Am. Chem. Soc、Nat. Commu.发表了大量的研究论文和专利，其研究水平得到了国际同行的广泛关注和认可。陈小明、苏成勇、张杰鹏、童明良、匡代斌教授等多次入选Thomson Reuters全球高被引科学家、Elsevier中国高被引学者或英国皇家化学会Top 1% 高被引中国作者。陈小明担任国际IUPAC新领域配位聚合物术语工作小组成员、国际分子筛协会MOF委员会委员，并于2012年荣获发展中国家科学院化学奖，2013年等获广东省科学技术一等奖；苏成勇2013年等获国家自然科学二等奖；Lehn教授2015年获中国政府友谊奖；任詠华院士荣获英国皇家化学学会2015年度Ludwig Mond奖； Mihail Barboiu教授2015年入选短期外专千人计划，并被英国皇家化学会授予2015年表面与界面奖。
LIFM has undertaken several high-standard scientific research tasks, including Major Program of National Natural Science Foundation of China, Key Program of National Natural Science Foundation of China, National Key Basic Research Development Program of China (973 Program), Key Science and Technology Program of Ministry of Education, Guangdong Leading Talent Introduction Program, Pearl River Talent Recruitment Program and Overseas Talents Recruitment Program, etc. In recent years, LIFM has granted key researchers the scientific research funds totaling RMB 60 million, won many national and provincial awards, acquired the authority to invent 8 patents and published a great number of research papers and patents on some internationally-recognized professional magazines and journals like Science, Chem. Soc. Rev., Angew. Chem. Int. Edit., Adv. Mater., J. Am. Chem. Soc and Nat. Commu. Its research level is widely concerned and recognized by international counterparts. Xiaoming Chen, Chengyong Su, Jiepeng Zhang, Mingliang Tong, Daibin Kuang and other professors are selected for Highly-Cited Researchers by Thomson Reuters, Highly-cited Chinese Researchers by Elsevier or Top 1% Highly-cited Chinese Authors by Royal Society of Chemistry. Xiaoming Chen serves as a member of International IUPAC Frontier Coordination Polymer Terminology Working Group and a member of MOF Committee of International Zeolite Association, wining the Chemistry Award of the Academy of Sciences for the Developing World in 2012 and the First Prize of Guangdong Provincial Science and Technology Award in 2013; Chengyong Su won the Second Prize of the State Natural Science Award in 2013; Prof. Lehn was awarded the Chinese Government Friendship Award in 2015; Vivian Wing-Wah Yam was granted Ludwig Mond Award by Royal Society of Chemistry in 2015; and Prof. Mihail Barboiu was selected for the Recruitment Program of Global Experts (Short Term) and granted Surfaces and Interfaces Award by Royal Society of Chemistry in 2015.
III. Tasks and Phased Implementation Plans
Overall Goals: According to LIFM’s development plan, the development purpose of LIFM is to build an internationalized platform and demonstration base integrating scientific research, talent training, exchange and cooperation by discipline development and institutional innovation, which is in compliance with SYSU’s long-term target – to be a world-class university having extensive influence over the world. With development of several years, LIFM will be developed into an international joint research institute led by global academic masters and having significant influence over the academic circles all over the world; complementary and interdisciplinary studies of the frontiers will be promoted for research features as well as high-quality SCI and highly-cited ESI academic achievements; high-quality international exchanges will be organized to attract and train young elites and foster leading talents with international influence; and an innovative mechanism featuring industry-university-research cooperation will be established to support the evolution of relevant disciplines, facilitate the development of first-level disciplines such as Chemistry, Materials and the like, enable SYSU to become a world-class university and improve its global ranking in respect of Chemistry, and lay a foundation for developing « big project, big team and big platform ».
To build « Lehn Institute of Functional Materials, Sun Yat-Sen University », a high-level international scientific research institute attached to SYSU with the support of internationally-recognized universities and research institutes for internationalized scientific research cooperation, talent introduction and talent training, through discipline development;
To engage internationally-recognized scholars to be PIs of every research direction, establish 6 to 8 research directions, which comply with national significant strategic demands, act as the complementary and interdisciplinary research directions of the existing ones and focus on Materials Chemistry, according to LIFM’s development plan; to build several world-class labs for the scientific researches run by LIFM’s foreign PI team;
To build a large integrated modern platform, which is up to international standard and equipped with advanced devices and complete functions, for instrument sharing on and off campus, to support the development of first-level disciplines such as Chemistry and Materials as well as high-quality scientific research;
To explore a new mechanism for international cooperation and exchange featuring « introduction, dispatch, Chinese-foreign collaboration and equal cooperation », extend the scope of international cooperation, promote high-quality international exchanges, and establish an innovative pilot unit for internationalized talent introduction and collaboration on scientific research as well as a special zone for international cooperation, academic exchange and talent training;
To explore a sound and internationalized management and operation mechanism, which is applicable to an international joint research institute, for joint training of doctoral students, postdoctoral researchers and visiting scholars, involving enrollment, training, exchange, degree granting and other relevant working procedures; to define the sharing mode of intellectual property rights, according to which, the intellectual property rights to dissertations and postdoctoral reports produced by the doctoral students and postdoctoral researchers enrolled by LIFM are reserved by SYSU and all the scientific research achievements, academic papers and patent technologies funded by LIFM must have SYSU indicated as the first signed author;
To gather a number of high-quality scholars, introduce outstanding young talents, train young talents, postdoctoral researchers and doctoral students (including winners of Distinguished Young Scholars Program, Yangtze River Scholars Program, Pearl River Scholars Program, Outstanding Talents Program, National Special Support Program for High-level Talents, Recruitment Program for Foreign Experts and International Postdoctoral Exchange Fellowship Program, etc.), and foster leading talents with international influence;
To carry out high-quality studies of the frontiers, produce high-quality SCI and highly-cited ESI academic papers and achievements, apply for international and national patents, and improve the global ranking of SYSU in respect of Chemistry;
To strive for external resources, such as the study abroad programs, international cooperation programs and support to international major cooperation provided by Guangdong Province, State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, Ministry of Education (MOE) and National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC), etc.;
To hold high-quality international seminars and exchanges, promote foreign cooperation and exchange on SYSU’s related disciplines, especially for young instructors; improve the international reputation of SYSU and its related disciplines; to engage in the international mainstream academic circles through cooperation with global academic masters, take up international academic positions and enhance SYSU’s academic influence; and
To build an international cooperation platform at provincial and national level, which supports the development of first-level disciplines such as Chemistry and Materials, and contributes to SYSU’s development goals — to become a leading university at home and abroad and to develop « big project, big team and big platform ».
With the coordination and promotion of SYSU’s leadership as well as the importance attached and support given by SYSU’s functional departments and schools, LIFM has accomplished its preliminary goals from its establishment in 2010 and inception in 2012 till now. In the future, LIFM will continue to follow leadership’s instructions – « in developing LIFM, we should not only consider short-term targets but pay more attention to long-term goals; a long-term and effective mechanism should be established for LIFM’s long-term development » and « we should have a sound top-level design to offer institutional guarantee and develop an innovation mechanism for internationalized school running, talent training and collaboration on scientific research, providing SYSU with experience and model in building a world-class university with internationalized measures » — and accomplish various tasks according to its development plan and development goals.
(I) Target Fulfillment and Performance in Phase I (2011-2015)
With SYSU’s support, LIFM has shaped up and completed such preparations as engagement of high-quality international scientists, definition of research directions, establishment and maintenance of an instrument platform, exchanges and visits of Chinese and foreign scientist and researchers, joint training of graduates and postdoctoral researchers as well as stable running of scientific research and talent training, laying a solid foundation for its development.
During Phase I, SYSU has invested RMB 27 million in hardware. So far, a public instrument platform with advanced equipment and complete functions for sharing on and off campus has taken shape, serving as a large instrument platform of the School of Chemistry, which is the most advanced and open one supporting the development of first-level disciplines regarding Chemistry and high-quality scientific research. Furthermore, a zone covering an area of nearly 600 square meters integrates a lab, which is equipped with state-of-the-art instruments, and an office, supporting the scientific researches run by LIFM’s foreign PI team and the preparations for scientific research. At present, the regular scientific research, talent training, management and operation of LIFM are all financed by itself, using the funds granted to Prof. Lehn through Guangdong Province: Program for Leading Talents Introduction (RMB 5 million) and Program for Foreign Experts Introduction (RMB 760,000) and 111 Project; NSFC Funds, National Postdoctoral Science Funds, NSFC Research Fund for International Young Scientists and other national and local funds for international students won by LIFM’s young instructors, postdoctoral researchers and doctoral students; and various national and local funds conferred on LIFM’s Chinese professors. So far, a large public instrument platform and labs have been put in operation; LIFM’s foreign supervisors have enrolled more than 20 doctoral students and postdoctoral researchers; and mutual visits between Chinese and foreign researchers as well as the joint training of graduates have been carried out comprehensively. However, according to the requirements prescribed by the current national financial policies, it is difficult to maintain the management and operation of the public platform and labs as well as the foreign supervisor-graduate joint training for a long term with the funds for scientific research only.
2. 初步建设了一个由顶尖学术大师领衔、凝聚一批国内外高水平科学家国际联合研究机构，形成一个中外合作、偏重材料化学特色的高水平研究团队，提升了中山大学化学学科国际影响力。结合国家和地方在能源、环境、材料等战略性高新领域和重大需求，在超分子化学、材料化学、纳米化学、能源与催化化学、光化学与材料、晶体工程前沿领域设立6个研究方向，分别聘任法国斯特拉斯堡大学J-M Lehn（诺贝尔奖获得者）、德国卡尔斯鲁厄理工学院D. Fenske（德国科学院院士）、瑞士巴塞尔大学M. Mayor（该校自然科学委员会主任）、瑞士联邦理工学院H.Grützmacher（ETH，欧洲顶尖大学）、中山大学陈小明院士和973首席科学家苏成勇教授等人担任学术带头人（PI）；先后聘请了一些国际知名学者担任客座、兼职教授加强研究力量，包括法国科学院院士Jean-Pierre Sauvage、美国德克萨斯A&M大学Joe Hongcai Zhou教授、欧洲膜技术研究所Mihail-Dumitru Barboiu、香港浸会大学黄维扬（香港化学会主席）教授；聘请了德国卡尔斯鲁厄理工学院Olaf Fuhr和Andreas Echhofer担任兼职副教授，作为外籍PI的科研助手；配备了高水平的中方研究人员进行科研协作，包括匡代彬（教育部新世纪优秀人才）、张杰鹏（杰青、长江学者）欧阳刚峰（杰青、长江学者）教授等。2014年引进了香港大学任詠华院士及其助手李永光博士。聘任江继军、王大为三位青年教师具体负责研究所日常事务。聘用1名专职行政人员、1名工程技术人员和1名自筹经费实验室管理人员，借调化学院1名工程技术人员和3名兼职教师，组建成一支有效的管理团队；
With the preliminary establishment of a joint research institute led by top academic masters and high-quality scientists at home and abroad as well as a high-quality research team focusing on Chinese-foreign cooperation and Materials Chemistry, SYSU has strengthened the international influence of its chemistry discipline. In light of national and local demands in such strategic high-tech fields as energy, environment and materials, LIFM established six research directions including Supramolecular Chemistry, Materials Chemistry, Nanochemistry, Energy and Catalytic Chemistry, Photochemistry and Materials, and Frontiers in Crystal Engineering, and for the purpose of strengthening the research team, engages J-M Lehn, a Nobel Prize winner from University of Strasbourg, D. Fenske, an academician of German Academy of Sciences from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, M. Mayor, the Director of Natural Sciences Committee of University of Basel, H.Grützmacher from Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), a top university in Europe, Xiaoming Chen, an academician from SYSU, Prof. Chengyong Su, a 973 Program Chief Scientist and the like to be Principal Investigators (PIs); some internationally recognized scholars to be visiting professors and adjunct professors, including Jean-Pierre Sauvage, an academician of French Academy of Sciences, Prof. Joe Hongcai Zhou from Texas A&M University, Mihail-Dumitru Barboiu from European Institute of Membranes and Prof. Raymond Wai-Yeung Wong (President of Hong Kong Chemical Society) from Hong Kong Baptist University; Olaf Fuhr and Andreas Echhofer from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology to be adjunct associate professors and research assistants to foreign PIs; and some other high-quality Chinese researchers including Daibin Kuang (winner of Ministry of Education: Program for New Century Excellent Talents), Jiepeng Zhang (Distinguished Young Scholar and Yangtze River Scholar), Prof. Gangfeng Ouyang (Distinguished Young Scholar and Yangtze River Scholar) and otherwise to assist in various scientific researches. In 2014, Vivian Wing-Wah Yam, an academician from University of Hong Kong and her assistant Dr. Yongguang Li were introduced. Three young instructors including Jijun Jiang, Dawei Wang and Yongguang Li are engaged to deal with LIFM’s daily concerns. An efficient management team is formed, staffed by one full-time administrator, one technologist, one self-funded lab manager, one technologist seconded from the School of Chemistry and three adjunct instructors.
3. 培养了一批青年人才和博士后、博士生（博士生18名，博士后9），期间聘任诺贝尔奖得主、中科院外籍院士J.-M. Lehn、德国科学院院士D. Fenske、香港大学中科院院士任詠华为讲席教授，新增发展中国家科学院院士(TWAS院士)1名，新增973项目首席科学家、国家杰出青年基金获得者、长江学者特聘教授、中组部首届青年拔尖人才计划、科技部中青年科技创新领军人才、中组部万人计划、教育部新世纪优秀人才各1名，3人次获得国家高水平博士后国际交流计划，Lehn教授获得2015年度中国政府“友谊奖”；研究所客座教授Lehn教授的学生Jean-Pierre& Sauvage获得2016诺贝尔化学奖。
LIFM has trained a number of young talents, 18 doctoral students and 9 postdoctoral researchers, engaged Nobel Prize winners, J.-M. Lehn, a foreign academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences, D. Fenske, an academician of German Academy of Sciences and Vivian Wing-Wah Yam, an academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences from University of Hong Kong to be chair professors, and newly introduced one academician of Third World Academy of Sciences (TWAS), one 973 Program Chief Scientist, one National Science Fund for Distinguished Young Scholars winner, one Distinguished Professor of Yangtze River Scholar Program, one participant of the First Outstanding Young Talent Plan initiated by the CCCPC Organization Department, one Young and Middle-aged Leading Innovative Talent of Science and Technology, one participant of National Special Support Program for High-level Talents and one winner of Ministry of Education: Program for New Century Excellent Talents. 3 of them were awarded International Postdoctoral Exchange Fellowship Program; Prof. Lehn, a visiting professor of LIFM, won the Chinese Government Friendship Award in 2015; and Jean-Pierre Sauvage, a student of Prof. Lehn, shared the 2016 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.
LIFM has played an important role in the implementation of 973 Program and other significant research plans by virtue of international cooperation and international influence as a remarkable achievement which is declared and organized by State Key Laboratory and 2011 Collaborative Innovation Center respectively.
LIFM is developing into a pilot and demonstration unit to explore new mechanisms for training of internationalized talents and coordination on scientific research in SYSU. For the evaluation of research institutes under science and engineering universities in 2014, SYSU ranked the first.
LIFM’s members have published more than 50 ESI highly-cited papers. As the most important unit producing chemistry-related ESI highly-cited papers in SYSU, LIFM not only made great contributions to SYSU’s global ranking in respect of Chemistry, but heightened its international influence over the international mainstream academic circles.
LIFM not only contributes to the formation and development of characteristic courses in the School of Chemistry, but lays a solid foundation for developing big team, big project and big platform.
(II) Key Missions and Assessment Targets to be Accomplished in Phase II (2016-2020)
Based on the sound performance and successful experience in Phase I, LIFM will further introduce and train high-quality talents, build a high-quality scientific research team, undertake national key and major scientific research projects, bring internationally-renowned scholars into full play, improve basic hardware and advance other relevant tasks; develop complementary programs to Materials Chemistry, which are in compliance with national significant strategic demands and local economic needs; according to the thirteenth five-year development plan of the School during the Phase II development, build a long-term stable talent team that is able to undertake major national and local science and technology tasks and produce high-quality scientific research achievements; offer effective assistance to the development of chemistry-related first-level disciplines and application for national scientific research platform; improve its international cooperation level and international influence as well as the global ranking in respect of Chemistry; and achieve the long-term goal – to build a long-term international joint research institute and cooperation platform, which is institutionalized and standardized, with significant international influence. Furthermore, LIFM will continue to strengthen the team building for every research direction, improve the public instrument platform, enhance lab and administrative management, develop an institutionalized, standardized and internationalized operating mechanism, build an « Internation as well as Hong Kong, Macao & Taiwan Science and Technology Cooperation Innovation Platform in Universities in Guangdong Province », apply for « International Science and Technology Cooperation Base of Guangdong Province » and « Joint International Laboratory of the Ministry of Education », strive to shape an international cooperation platform at provincial and national level, establish material partnership with foreign high-quality scientists, strive for the study abroad programs, international cooperation programs and support to international major cooperation provided by Guangdong Province, State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, Ministry of Education, National Natural Science Foundation of China and other authorities, organize high-quality scientific research and training of graduates and young talents effectively, and develop into a demonstration unit for internationalized scientific research cooperation and talent training. The specific tasks and assessment targets are as follows:
To further develop and improve scientific research directions: according to the thirteenth five-year development plan of the School during the Phase II development, together with national and local demands in such strategic high-tech fields as energy, environment and life, we will establish long-term and complementary disciplines to the existing research directions of the School, focus on Materials Chemistry, and solve some basic material-related problems in the fields of energy, environment and life. Based on the six research directions developed in Phase I, we will further integrate, strengthen, highlight and develop another six research directions of the international frontiers, including Functional Supramolecular and Composites, Functional Nanomaterials, Functional Medical Materials, Functional Inorganic Materials, Environmental and Energy Materials as well as Photoelectric Materials and Devices, which are directed against the design, synthesis, functional regulation, applied research and other significant technical issues of innovative and applied materials, and engage internationally-recognized scholars to be PIs of every research direction;
To further strengthen team building: In light of the said six research directions, we will integrate the School’s related strengths to improve the matching of Chinese and foreign scientists and the ability of the scientific research team to tackle various technical problems. On the one hand, we will continue to introduce world-class scholars specializing in related fields as well as high-quality young talents, such as the winners of Recruitment Program for Young Professionals and Recruitment Program of Global Experts (Short Term); on the other hand, we will enhance our staffing, train Chinese high-quality talents and key members, integrate some Chinese researchers skilled in international cooperation and studies of Materials Chemistry, such as winners of Recruitment Program of Global Experts (Hongzhe Sun), Distinguished Young Scholars Program (Gangfeng Ouyang), Recruitment Program for Young Professionals (Jiaobing Wang and Xiaodan Zhao) and new talents (Gaoren Li, Xihong Lu, Weixiong Zhang and Jianyong Zhang, etc.), and build an internationalized high-quality research team to study the frontiers of Materials Chemistry and support the development of first-level disciplines such as Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, etc.
To keep on improving the public instrument platform, enhance the building of a technical team for a large public instrument platform which is of high quality, and support the development of chemistry-related first-level disciplines and high-quality scientific research;
To integrate, train and introduce a number of young talents, strive to be an important base for various talents such as winners of Distinguished Young Scholars Program, Outstanding Young Scholars Program, Yangtze River Scholars Program, Pearl River Scholars Program, Outstanding Talents Program, National Special Support Program for High-level Talents, Recruitment Program for Young Professionals, Recruitment Program for Foreign Experts, Recruitment Program of Global Experts (Short Term), Special Support Program of Guangdong Province for High-level Talents, Ministry of Education: Program for New Century Excellent Talents and International Postdoctoral Exchange Fellowship Program and academicians, introduce and develop 2 to 4 programs for various high-quality talents, introduce and train 3 to 5 talent programs winners, and offer joint training to 5-10 high-quality doctoral researchers and about 20 doctoral students;
To assist State Key Laboratory and 2011 Collaborative Innovation Center in development, apply for 2 to 4 national key and major projects (including National Key R&D Plan, International and Regional Cooperation Program, International Major Cooperation Program, National Major and Key Programs and so on), 5 to 10 NSFC funds, 3 to 5 National Postdoctoral Science Funds and High-quality Postdoctoral Researchers Recruitment Programs as well as more than 10 scientific research projects and talent programs of all kinds at provincial level, and strive to make remarkable achievements with international influence;
To enhance applied & basic researches, improve the ability to transform achievements, apply for 8 to 15 domestic and foreign patents, undertake 3 to 5 industry-university-research and applied projects, and strengthen local service and the capability to unite enterprises, subject to LIFM’s core objectives such as to improve internationalized scientific research cooperation level, to explore internationalized talent training mechanism and to heighten LIFM’s international influence;
To apply for « International Science and Technology Cooperation Base of Guangdong Province » and « Joint International Laboratory of the Ministry of Education », and strive to be an international cooperation platform at provincial and national level;
To publish more than 50 high-quality and highly-cited ESI papers with SYSU indicated as a coauthor, maintain the leading position as the productive unit producing chemistry-related ESI highly-cited papers in SYSU, make great contributions to SYSU’s global ranking in respect of Chemistry, and heighten the international influence of the faculty of the School of Chemistry over the international mainstream academic circles; and
To improve the new mechanisms for training of internationalized talents and coordination on scientific research, facilitate the formation and development of characteristic courses in the School of Chemistry, and give strong support to the development of big team, big project and big platform.
(III) Implementation Plan for Long-Term Goals (2021-2025)
We strive to build an international joint research institute with notable international influence led by top academic masters and joined by a number of domestic and foreign high-quality scientists and outstanding young talents for internationalized talent training and scientific research; improve and perfect the new mechanisms for training of internationalized talents and coordination on scientific research; carry out high-quality studies of the frontiers and applied & basic researches to meet national significant demands; promote high-quality international exchanges; introduce and train top elites and foster leading talents with international influence; undertake major scientific research tasks, develop the ability to run the scientific research projects independently and produce high-quality research achievements serving the society; support the development of first-level disciplines such as Chemistry and Materials; and contribute to SYSU’s development goals — to become a leading university at home and abroad and to develop « big project, big team and big platform ».
In conclusion, our aim is to build a special zone for internationalized scientific research cooperation and talent training, as well as a long-term international joint research institute and cooperation platform, which is institutionalized and standardized, with significant international influence and brand effect.