Per Thorén

Director of Studies (MPNAT) and Project Manager (Molecular Frontiers)

Dr Per Thorén is Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Molecular Frontiers Foundation, a global network of scientists and educators, aiming to increase the public appreciation and understanding of science, in particular among young people. He is behind the website MoleClues ( and has produced several successful video projects (see He is lead organizer of the annual Molecular Frontiers Symposia, where high school students in various contries are given the opportunity to meet and listen to world leading scientists, including Nobel laureates.
As of January 2022, Per works as Director of Studies, responsible for the Master program Nanotechnology, as coordinator for Lifelong learning at Chalmers, and with elite athlete students enrolled in Chalmers dual career program.

Molecular Frontiers Foundation is a non-profit organization, founded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. The aim is to Inspire public appreciation of molecular science globally, by:

• Stimulating an interest in science in young people
• Increasing awareness of and access to chemistry and molecular science in the general public
• Promoting communication between scientists worldwide


Among the activities run by the Foundation are:

MoleClues, an interactive website for young people with games, videos, news, interviews, discussion forums and competitions - anything related to molecules!

Annual Molecular Frontiers Sympos​​ia, where world-leading scientists meet and discuss urgent topics. High school students are also invited to these meetings, and given the opportunity to ask questions to the researchers.

Molecular Frontiers Inquiry Prize, the first competition that rewards questions, not answers. Young people (under 18) are invited to submit questions about anything related to molecules. A jury, consisting of eminent scientists, many of them Nobel laureates, judge the questions to find the best questions. Each year, five girls and five boys win a medal, a certificate and a device such as an iPad.

MoleCluesTV, a YouTube channel featuring educational videos and recordings of lectures from all Molecular Frontiers Symposia. 


Chalmers has played a key role in Molecular Frontiers since it was formed in 2006. Professor Bengt Nordén iniatied the organization, and Per Thorén has been employed since spring 2006 as project manager and web editor. The other nodes in the network are Massachussetts Institute of Technology (US) and Nanyang Technological University (Singapore).

Page manager Published: Tue 11 Oct 2022.