Karel Dušek received his M.Sc. degree from Institute of Chemical Technology in Prague in 1953 and his Ph.D. from Institute of Physical Chemistry of Czechoslovak of the Academy of Sciences in 1958. Before he joined the Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry of the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences in 1965, he worked for Research Institute of Synthetic Resins and Lacquers in Pardubice (now SYNPO, Inc.).

His main research interest has been in formation, structure, and properties of cross-linked polymers and polymer gels.

Karel Dušek published about 320 peer-reviewed papers that have received over 10100 citations, his H-index is 47. The article Structure and elasticity of non-crystalline polymer networks (Dusek, Prins), Adv. Polym. Sci. 1969, 6, 1 is the most cited one (781 citations).

Karel Dušek is Professor of Macromolecular Chemistry and spent shorter times as visiting professor at universities in France, U.S.A and U.K. and since 1996, Karel Dušek is Adjunct Professor in the Department of Bioengineering of the University of Utah. In 1994, Karel Dušek was elected founding member of the Learned Society of the Czech Republic. At present Karel Dušek is Emeritus Principal Scientist of the Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic.