A novel initiator containing pyrene, a fluorescent moiety, was prepared by reacting 1-aminopyrene and 2-bromoisobutyl bromide. The structure elucidation of the new initiator was carried out using various spectroscopic tools, as well as through single crystal X-ray diffraction studies. Novel, fluorescent amphiphilic block copolymers with a pyrene end-group, poly(styrene-b-acrylic acid) [P(S-b-AA)], poly(methyl methacrylate-b-dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) [P(MMA-b-DMAEMA)], poly(styrene-b-tert-butyl acrylate) [P(S-b-t-BA)], poly(styrene-b-dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) [P(S-b-DMAEMA)] were successfully synthesized by the atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) method, using CuBr as the catalyst and N,N,N′,N″,N″- pentamethyldiethylenetriamine (PMDETA)/N,N,N′,N″,N″- hexamethyltriethylenetetramine (HMTETA) as the complexing agent. The polymers were characterized by GPC, 1H-NMR, IR and UV-Vis spectroscopies. It was observed that as the polymerization time increased, both the conversion and the molecular weight increased linearly with time. The fluorescence properties of the polymers prepared were recorded. The physical properties and especially the pH dependent swelling properties of the amphiphilic block copolymers have been investigated. The utility of the block copolymers in the formation of stable dispersion of cadmium sulphide nanoparticles was investigated as a model study. Copyright © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.