MDPI Sustainability Foundation

The groundwork of the MDPI Sustainability Foundation was laid in the 1980s, based on Dr. Shu-Kun Lin’s early conviction that compounds developed by chemists around the world should be collected, preserved, and shared. In 1996, Dr. Lin founded MDPI—Molecular Diversity Preservation International—to achieve this goal. The collection and distribution of the chemical samples was transferred to the MDPI Sustainability Foundation, registered in 2012, and operated by Molmall Sarl on behalf of the Foundation.

After successfully running several open access journals, including Molecules, Sensors and Entropy, MDPI developed into a leading open access publisher and the publishing part was transferred into a separate legal entity in 2010. MDPI remained the abbreviation of the newly founded “Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute”.

The vision of the MDPI Sustainability Foundation is therefore inherently to preserve the diversity that is crucial for academic research and its wider global implications. The initial focus was, thus, limited to preservation of chemical compounds through the deposit and exchange of rare molecular and biomolecular research samples. These samples would then be made available to the scientific community for future research purposes and contribute to further scientific developments. Future steps were to expand this preservation effort to other types of samples and resources.

Since then, Dr. Lin’s interest in sustainability has widened considerably and he is now strongly committed to support societally-relevant research that contributes to regional and global efforts toward a sustainable world. As part of this effort, MDPI has initiated the World Sustainability Forum (WSF), an international conference where the World Sustainability Award is presented, as well as its smaller counterpart—the local Basel Sustainability Forum BSF. Furthermore, MDPI fosters scholarly exchange on issues of sustainability with its according publications—the open-access journal Sustainability and the edited book series Frontiers in Sustainability (FinS).