Technical Product Development Manager, Decorative Paints China
My name is Chong Yan. In Chinese it´s written 燕翀. I prefer to use the English name, Ian. The pronunciation is similar to Yan. I was born in 1978 in Yunnan Province in South China. In my spare time I like to read and travel with my girlfriend who works at a law firm.
My background is in chemical engineering. I did my Bachelors at Tsinghua University in Beijing and my Masters at the same university in 2003. In 2003, I received a scholarship to study for a PhD at the University of Nottingham, which I completed in 2007. The subject of my study was green chemistry using supercritical fluids. During this period, I also received financial support from INVISTA Performance Technologies (IPT), which used to be a part of the former ICI. It was this connection with IPT that led my career into industry.
After joining former ICI in August 2007, I was offered a position as Senior Scientist in its China Applied Research Group in Songjiang, near to Shanghai. My job was to develop new latex products and support their scale up. At the end of 2009, AkzoNobel Decorative Paints asked me whether I would like to join them. It was a move from a corporate department to a business unit, from a supplier to a customer, and from research to development. I started off as Technical Project Manager, focusing on two important categories of raw materials, latex and TiO2. Now I´m working as Technical Product Development Manager for Woodcare products. It´s been a great move.
For young scientists and researchers, AkzoNobel offers a wealth of opportunities to develop as an individual and to be involved in cutting-edge research. Although it sets the bar high, the learning curve is amazing and it gives you a real sense of achievement to be able to work in such a creative environment.