The design, synthesis, and study of electrically conductive molecular and polymeric substances constitute a new scientific endeavor involving the interaction of chemists, physicists, and materials scientists. The strategies, developments, and challenges in these two closely related fields are analyzed via a class of materials that bridges both: assemblies of electrically conductive metallomacrocycles. It is seen that efforts to rationally synthesize tailored, "metal-like" molecular arrays lead logically to structure-enforced polymeric assemblies of linked molecular subunits such as metallophthalocyanines. The properties of these assemblies and fragments thereof provide information on the relationship between atomic-level local architecture, electronic structure, and macroscopic transport properties. Electrically conductive, processable polymeric materials also follow from these results.
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