History / E. de Rothschild Foundation


Edmond de Rothschild

Edmond de R

1845 - 1934

In 1921 he created the Rothschild Foundation, to finance French scientific research.
His friendship with Jean Perrin led to the creation of a second foundation to fully fund the IBPC. Subsequently, the two foundations were merged to fund the IBPC alone.

The war showed that the contribution of the physico-chemical sciences was indipensable to the national defense; during peace times, discoveries in physico-chemical sciences could make a powerful contribution to economic progress of the country. With these considerations in mind, the Foundation's purpose was to encourage training of elite scholars, making them immune to worldly concerns and directing their work towards the application of Science to the development of the economic strength of the Nation.

                   Edmond de Rothschild, his grand-son

Jean Perrin

Jean Perrin


He was elected to the Academy of Sciences in 1923 and he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1926. He became the president of the IBPC upon its foundation in 1927.

Jean Perrin was someone who abounded in generosity. A great seducer from all points of view, he inveigled everyone, not just women, men too. He knew how to talk to people, MPs, ministers.

Pierre Auger, a physicist of the 20th century.

George Urbain

George Urbain


Many times nominated for the Nobel Prize in chemistry, he entered the Academy of Sciences in 1921.
On the death of Andre Job in 1928, he joined the IBPC.

Just as he was a great chemist, a painter, a sculptor, a talented musician, he would have become a prominent biologist if circumstances had allowed his brilliant imaginative faculties, his outstanding artistic gifts to be exercised in the vast domain of the study of life.

Pierre Girard, first director of the IBPC.

André Mayer

André Mayer


Having resigned from his functions at the IBPC, he became the first president of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in 1941.
In 1950, he was elected to the Academy of Sciences.

About the man himself, so endearing because of his lively intelligence, his courtesy, his disinterestedness and his possession of a serenity that placed him well above the tumult of human passions, I will only say that all those who knew him could not help but respect, admire, and love him.

Pierre Girard, first director of the IBPC.

Pierre Girard

pierre girard


A chemist, he became the first director of the IBPC in 1927.

He was always independent and often a loner, with the advantages and disadvantages that are associated with isolation. No career concerns dictated his policy. Not looking to publish a lot, he was quick to abandon a subject as soon as it no longer gave him the kind of intellectual buzz that accompanies new discoveries and did not mind seeing others harvest the fruits of his labour.

Jacques Duclaux, a chemist in the IBPC

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