Nobel Prize

Research Themes

Center for Ultrafast Science & Technology

Laboratory for Molecular Sciences


Research Family

Global Issues and Science Education


  • Selected Publications
  • A. H. Zewail. Reflections on Arab Renaissance, The Cairo Review of Global Affairs I, 36 (2011).

    I recently read an important study that left me in awe of the knowledge demographics of our planet. In Educating All Children: A Global Agenda, Joel Cohen and David Bloom argue that while the aim of achieving primary and secondary schooling for all children is urgent and feasible, more than three hundred million children will not be in school in the year 2015. Empowering future generations with contemporary liberal arts education represents a significant challenge, even for highly developed nations...

    A. H. Zewail. Mediterranean Scientopolitics, Science 321, 1417 (2008).

    On this year's Bastille Day in July, the President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy, inaugurated a new initiative for uniting the Mediterranean South with Europe in general, and France in particular. The aim of the Mediterranean Union (MU), an analogue of the post-Cold War European Union (EU), is to "lay the foundations of a political, economic and cultural union founded on the principles of strict equality." Comprising 27 EU members and states from the Middle East, North Africa, and the Balkans, the MU would in principle unite close to 800 million people. In June, a meeting was held at the Institut de France with representation from many academies, scientists, and politicians to discuss possible cooperative programs. The goals expressed at the meeting are admirable; however, the MU's motives need to be clearly defined, as the issues for the MU are very different from those for the EU. Most important, thus far missing in the fabric of the former is an explicit role for education and science...

    A. H. Zewail. The Future of Our World, 5th U Thant Distinguished Lecture, United Nations University, Tokyo, Japan, April 15, 2003.

    Over the last century, our world has experienced at times a "beautiful age" with promises of peace and prosperity, but then some imposing forces changed the entire landscape. History reminds us of recurrences, and the current state of the world is not so different that we may ask—what political and economic forces cause such disorder in a world seeking prosperity through globalization and revolutionary advances in technology? Here we will address the need for a rational world vision that must take into account developments in the population of the have-nots and dialogues of cultures. It is a vision of economic, political, religious, and cultural dimensions in world affairs. Only with such a vision can we shape a bright future for our world...

    A. H. Zewail. Dialogue of Civilizations: Making History Through a New World Vision, UNESCO Public Address, Paris, France, April 20, 2002.

    The 2002 UNESCO conference, "Science et la quête du sens" in Paris, was devoted to science and the quest for meaning; the English title, "Science and the Spiritual Quest", emphasizes the spiritual dimension, a realm beyond science. Similarly, this chapter, which is based on my lecture given at the conference, is concerned with dimensions beyond science—our human existence in civilizations and cultures that may or may not be in a state of clash...

    A. H. Zewail. Science in the Developing World, TWAS Newslett. 14, 23 (2002).

    I am pleased to have this opportunity to share with you some personal reflections on current issues which I believe may well be at the core of world peace and stability. Science education and development through science are the subject of my presentation, and I thought I would use my personal journey through two cultures, one currently developing and the other developed, to address issues of concern and what should be done to achieve progress...

    A. H. Zewail. Science for the Have-Nots, Nature 410, 741 (2001).

    Only a fifth of the population enjoys the benefit of life in the 'developed world', and the gap between the haves and have-nots continues to increase, threatening stability. According to the World Bank, of the 6 billion people on Earth, 4.8 billion live in developing countries, 3 billion live on less than US$2 a day, and 1.2 billion live on less than $1 a day, which defines the absolute poverty standard; 1.5 billion people do not have access to clean water...

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