President's Message: Thank you for attending WCP2023 

Published: 27 Jul 2023

It has been three weeks since the World Congress of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology 2023, and I am still reflecting on the success of the event, both in terms of delivering a fantastic scientific programme as well as bringing pharmacologists together from around the world, encouraging collaboration and discussion that could be the key to exciting new projects in the future. 

The team at the Society has been working hard to plan the Congress for many years, following the successful bid by Professor David Webb and Professor Amrita Ahluwalia to be the host Society back in 2014, who then worked with the International Programming Committee to put together a fantastic scientific programme. 

We were originally set to host the Congress in 2022 which of course had to be delayed until 2023 due to continued COVID-19 restrictions and barriers to travel. By shifting the Congress to 2023, we gave more of our global community the opportunity to join us at the Scottish Events Campus (SEC) in Glasgow, and I am pleased to report that we had over 2,000 delegates in attendance at the meeting.  

I’d like to personally thank everyone who joined us – our delegates, speakers, and exhibitors – for making this event special. It was a privilege to host delegates from 84 countries, covering all areas of pharmacology, and bringing their passion for our subject area to the meeting. I’d like to note that we saw an excellent turnout of Early Career Researchers; it was great to see the next generation of pharmacologists embrace this opportunity to network and learn; I hope you found the Congress beneficial to you. 

My personal highlights of the Congress were to see and feel the “buzz” around the poster sessions each lunchtime – the much-needed outcome of finally being able to meet colleagues old and new in person after such a difficult period during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, the quality of the plenary lectures was outstanding, and I would particularly like to spotlight the opening lecture from Professor Garret FitzGerald for setting the bar so for the rest of the meeting. Of course, I can’t mention the opening ceremony without thanking the Red Hot Chilli Pipers and Josie Duncan and the Orkney Boys for entertaining us all so well. The opening ceremony set a very high bar for the level of the subsequent social events throughout the rest of the week, and we were not disappointed!   

Of course, the Congress wouldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for the hard work of the BPS team, the past BPS presidents who were in post during the development of the meeting, the Congress President and Secretary General, Professors David Webb and Amrita Ahluwalia, our Vice President of Meetings Cherry Wainwright, our Congress Consultant Lynn Samson, and Vicky Giordano and her team, who facilitated our sponsor support and partnership work. I’d also like to thank the ECR volunteers, who were an incredible support throughout all areas of the Congress, as well as Dr Aisah Aubdool from Queen Mary University of London and Alina Zorn from University of Glasgow, who led many of the ECR activities. I would like to thank the staff at the SEC and the teams at Visit Scotland and Glasgow Convention Bureau for their hard work and for welcoming us so warmly to Glasgow and ensuring the event went so smoothly. Finally, I would like to thank the leadership team at IUPHAR for having the confidence in the BPS to host such an important event in their calendar. 

We can all now look ahead to the next World Congress of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology, which will take place in 2026 in Melbourne, Australia. It promises to be an excellent event that our friends and colleagues “down under” have promised will follow WCP2023 with the same sense of energy and collaboration. 

I also encourage you to register your interest in our next BPS annual meeting, Pharmacology 2024, which will take place next December 10-12 in Harrogate. Harrogate promises to deliver another unique and scientifically brilliant event in a beautiful area of England with all the elements of our annual Pharmacology meeting that our members have grown to love over the years. Keep an eye out for more details about how to get involved.

Finally, it just remains for me to thank you all for your support of WCP and please enjoy the rest of your summer. 


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