Optical waveguides synthesized at the micro/nanoscale have drawn great interest for their potential applications in high speed miniaturized photonic integrations. In this Perspective article, we mainly focus on the related works on active optical waveguides based on functional small organic molecules in micro/nano regime. We begin with a general overview of recent progress in sub-wavelength optical waveguides, including the development of waveguide materials of inorganic semiconductors, polymers, and small organic molecules. Then brief highlights are put on the recently reported organic optical waveguides with various unique optical properties induced by the ordered molecular aggregations in the micro/nano-sized solid-state structures, such as polarized emission, lasing, aggregation-induced enhanced emission, etc. This article concludes with a summary and our personal view about the direction of future development in organic opto-functional waveguides as photonic devices.
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