11th Annual Texas Soft Matter Meeting

University of Houston

Soft matter

August 18, 2023

Houston Room, Student Center South, University of Houston

Thank you all for coming to Houston, the event was a great success!


Tian Chen, Mechanical Engineering, University of Houston

Gül Zerze, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, University of Houston

Society of Plastics Engineers University of Houston Chapter, University of Houston
Officers: Rosalie Berg, Dung Nguyen, Siddharth Paul


Soft matter is ubiquitous in engineering and biological systems ranging from organic tissue to thousand-mile-long underwater pipes. It is an interdisciplinary field of engineering that focuses on 1) the synthesize of constituent material with exotic properties, 2) the advanced manufacturing of these materials to create complex multi-functional structures, and 3) the integration of these structures to assemble the next generation engineering systems.

The goal of the Texas Soft Matter Meeting is to encourage collaboration among researchers from industry and academia in Texas who work with soft materials, ranging from polymers to soft condensed matter to biomaterials. This workshop will rotate between institutions in Texas and be held annually. Each meeting will include longer invited talks, short contributed talks, and unstructured time. We envision that this meeting will provide an interdisciplinary forum in which faculty, students, postdocs, and professionals can exchange ideas in an informal setting.

Submission & Registration

  1. The rapid talk registration is closed. For those who submitted a talk title, please submit a 3-slide presentation. Please use this template to prepare.
  2. The registration is closed.

Location & Parking

The meeting will be held at the UH Main Campus Student Center South (map). There will be parking on site at the Elgin Street Garage for visitors (Google Street view, and map).

Meeting programme

8:00 - 8:30Registration and breakfast
8:30 - 8:40Short opening remarks
8:40 - 9:20Keynote I: Amanda Marciel, Rice University
9:20 - 10:00Rapid talks A: Polyelectrolytes, biological condensates, and coacervates
10:00 - 10:30Morning break and group photo
10:30 - 11:10Keynote II: Alexander Marras, UT Austin
11:10 - 11:50Rapid talks B: Synthetic and composite polymers I
11:50 - 12:50Lunch
12:50 - 13:30Keynote III: David Germack, Kraton
13:30 - 14:10Rapid talks C: Biological soft matter
14:10 - 14:30Afternoon break I
14:30 - 15:10Rapid talks D: Colloidal and granular soft matter
15:10 - 15:50Keynote IV: Roxanne Jenkins, DOW
15:50 - 16:10Afternoon break II
16:10 - 16:40Rapid talks E: Synthetic and composite polymers II
16:40 - 17:20Panel discussion: Career, Research and work life balance
17:20 - lateHappy hour!


We thank the generous donations from the following esteemed sponsors,



We are seeking corporate sponsors for the Texas Soft Matter Meeting. If you are interested in supporting our effort, please contact the organizers at gzerze@central.uh.edu.

University of Houston

The University of Houston (UH), a public research university in Texas, was founded as Houston Junior College in 1927 and became a four-year institution in 1934. It's the third-largest university in Texas, awarding about 11,000 degrees annually to a worldwide alumni base of 300,000. With fifteen colleges, including nine professional schools, UH offers around 310 degree programs to about 47,000 students. Its main campus in southeast Houston spans 894 acres and includes additional sites in Sugar Land and Katy. Known for its green spaces, sculptures, and notable architectural structures, UH is a flagship institution of the University of Houston System. Nearly 88% of its students are from Texas, with 9% being international students.

Houston, the Space City

Houston, the fourth-largest city in the US with 2.3 million residents, is located in Southeast Texas near Galveston Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. Established in 1836 and named after former General Sam Houston, it grew into a major trading center and diversified its economy in the 20th century, with significant contributions from the port, rail, oil, healthcare, and space industries. Nicknamed the "Bayou City" or "Space City", Houston has become a global city, with strengths in culture, medicine, and research. The city has a population from various ethnic and religious backgrounds and a large and growing international community. Houston has been described as the most racially and ethnically diverse major city in the U.S. It is home to many cultural institutions and exhibits, which attract more than seven million visitors a year to the Museum District. The Museum District is home to nineteen museums, galleries, and community spaces. Houston has an active visual and performing arts scene in the Theater District, and offers year-round resident companies in all major performing arts.

Meeting Archive

Please click here for a list of past meetings.

© 2023 Tian Chen, Megan Robertson | Image Credit: Gila Stein