About ACS

Founded in 1876, the world's largest scientific society

With more than 163,000 members, the American Chemical Society (ACS) is the world's largest scientific society and one of the world's leading sources of authoritative scientific information. A nonprofit organization, chartered by Congress, ACS is at the forefront of the evolving worldwide chemical enterprise and the premier professional home for chemists, chemical engineers and related professions around the globe.

Our Mission and Vision

We are dynamic and visionary, committed to “Improving people's lives through the transforming power of chemistry.”

This vision ─ developed and adopted by the ACS Board of Directors after broad consultation with the membership ─ fully complements the ACS Mission statement, which is “to advance the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of Earth and its people.” Together, these two statements represent our ultimate reason for being and provide a strategic framework for our efforts.

What We Do

The Society publishes numerous scientific journals and databases, convenes major research conferences and provides educational, science policy and career programs in chemistry. We also give more than $22 million every year in grants for basic research in petroleum and related fields.

We also play a leadership role in educating and communicating with public policy makers and the general public about the importance of chemistry in our lives. This includes identifying new solutions, improving public health, protecting the environment and contributing to the economy.

We Are Local, National, and Global


ACS has more than 185 local sections (chapters) throughout the United States. US Local sections allow members to:

  • Connect with other chemists and chemical engineers in their geographic area
  • Participate in programs near their homes that can enhance their professional development
  • Contribute to the public's understanding of chemistry in their communities.
  • ACS US regional meetings are hosted by local sections in various geographic regions across the United States.


The Society offers members the opportunity to participate in more than 32 specialty divisions, ranging from food and agriculture to industrial and engineering chemistry. These divisions help members:

  • Keep up with the latest developments in their areas of expertise
  • Monitor advances in related fields
  • Network with colleagues
  • Contribute to the advancement and recognition of their scientific discipline.

Twice annually, ACS sponsors US national meetings ─ five days of symposia, tutorials, and poster sessions that cover every area of chemistry, chemical engineering and related sciences. Short courses with renowned instructors, workshops, divisional and committee meetings and other related sessions also occur at US national meetings.


The Society's international membership exceeds 24,000 and represents more than 100 countries.

More than 60 percent of the articles published in ACS journals and more than half of the material covered in the Society's Chemical Abstracts Service ─ the world's most comprehensive source of chemical and scientific information ─ originates outside the United States.

ACS sponsors or promotes a number of international activities such as joint conferences with chemical societies in India and other countries, and the International Chemical Congress of Pacific Basin Societies (PacifiChem), a weeklong scientific meeting, held once every five years in conjunction with ACS counterparts in Australia, Canada, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, and China.