What is OCPA?

OCPA stands for International Organization of Chinese Physicists and Astronomers. It is a nonpolitical, professional, not-for-profit, tax exempt organization chartered in the State of New York in June 1990. The chartered goals of the organization are to promote physics and astronomy research in general and to promote recognition of achievements by ethnic Chinese physicists and astronomers in particular. The original full name of OCPA was Overseas Chinese Physics Association and it was recently changed to the new name (while the abbreviation kept unchanged) to reflect the fact that the organization is worldwide. A brief history of the OCPA can be found here.


Our activities are all conducted in English. We publish 2 issues of OCPA Newsletter per year, maintain an email network, sponsor workshops in Asia Pacific region, act as clearinghouse for information on jobs and career advancements of our colleagues and members. We organize joint meeting of Chinese Physicists and Astronomers Worldwide - International Conference on Physics Education and Frontier Physics and Astronomy every two to three years. We also give OCPA Outstanding Young Researcher Award through a rigorous selection process, with many nominations from leading graduate institutions in US and Canada. We have also instituted the OCPA Achievement in Asia Award (Robert T. Poe Prize) in order to promote and give wider recognition to the work that is going on in Asia Pacific region.


OCPA is recognized by the APS, for they have invited us to organize the special Physics Without Borders session at the April APS meeting for the last four years. The session is sponsored by the APS Forum on International Physics. It is an interdisciplinary one, with speakers coming from Mainland China, Taiwan, and for balance, the USA.


Our members hail from all disciplines of physics/astronomy, and spill over into chemistry, electrical engineering, computer science and mathematics. The membership is still small, being only around 400. But our reputation as a physics/astronomy professional organization reflects on the quality of our membership rather than on the quantity. Our membership includes Nobel Laureates, a Field Medalist, members of the National Academy as well as many outstanding leaders of physics/astronomy research today. Over the years, the stature of OCPA has increased. The warm response of the physics/astronomy community to our OCPA awards, as well as the invitation by the APS Forum on International Physics to organize the Physics Without Borders session are testimony to this. Furthermore, the DOE newsletter carried the news of our OCPA award to Prof Zhi-Xun Shen, and the July issue of the APS News carried a report of the Physics Without Borders session as well as of the two OCPA Awards. As OCPA grows in stature, it is important that OCPA also grow in membership. There are many of you who already are aware of the OCPA name but through inertia and forgetfulness have not yet sent in the membership form. We urge you to do so, as a sign of support for the goals of OCPA.