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Attending this year’s EuCheMS congress is an opportunity to hear from some of the most eminent scientists and researchers working today. Explore the information below to find out more about each of them and the work they’ve carried out in their respective fields. We will be adding new speaker biographies to this page regularly, so come back soon for more.


Speaker Biography

Professor Dame Carol Robinson holds the Chair of Dr. Lee’s Professor of Chemistry at the University of Oxford.  A graduate of the Royal Society of Chemistry, she is recognised for using mass spectrometry to further her research into the 3D structure of proteins.

Carol is a Fellow of the Royal Society and a Foreign Associate of the US National Academy of Sciences.  Her research has attracted international awards including the Anfinsen Award from the Protein Society and the Davy Medal and Rosalind Franklin Award from the Royal Society.  Carol also holds five honorary doctorates and received a DBE in 2013 for her contribution to science and industry.

Speaker Biography

Frances Arnold is the Linus Pauling Professor of Chemical Engineering, Bio-engineering and Biochemistry at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), where her research focuses on engineering enzymes by directed evolution. Her laboratory developed methods that are used widely in industry and basic science to engineer proteins with new and useful properties. Dr. Arnold has been elected to the US National Academies of Science, Medicine, and Engineering, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the National Inventors Hall of Fame. Her recent awards include the Charles Stark Draper Prize, the Millennium Technology Prize, the Sackler Prize in Convergence Research, and the National Medal of Technology and Innovation. She chairs the Advisory Panel of the David and Lucile Packard Foundation Fellowships in Science and Engineering.

Speaker Biography

Omar M. Yaghi is the James and Neeltje Tretter Chair Professor of Chemistry at University of California, Berkeley, and a Senior Faculty Scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. He is the Founding Director of the Berkeley Global Science Institute whose mission is to build centers of research in developing countries and provide opportunities for young scholars to discover and learn. He is also the Co-Director of the Kavli Energy NanoScience Institute focusing on the basic science of energy transformation on the molecular level, as well as the California Research Alliance by BASF supporting joint academia-industry innovations. He is known for his key scientific contributions in the discovery and development of several extensive classes of new materials: metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) and covalent organic frameworks (COFs). These materials are useful in hydrogen and methane storage, carbon capture and conversion, water harvesting from desert air, and catalysis, to mention a few. The building block approach he developed has led to an exponential growth in the creation of new materials having a diversity and multiplicity previously unknown in chemistry. He termed this field ‘Reticular Chemistry’ and defines it as ‘stitching molecular building blocks into extended structures by strong bonds’. Recently, Yaghi received King Faisal International Prize in Science (2015), Royal Society of Chemistry Spiers Memorial Award (2017), Albert Einstein World Award of Science (2017), BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award in Basic Sciences (2018), and Wolf Prize in Chemistry (2018).

Speaker Biography

Chris Dobson is the John Humphrey Plummer Professor of Chemical and Structural Biology at the University of Cambridge and Director of the Cambridge Centre for Misfolding Diseases. He was an undergraduate, graduate student and research fellow at the University of Oxford. He then became an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at Harvard University and a Visiting Scientist at MIT before returning to Oxford where he was a Professor of Chemistry until moving to Cambridge in 2001. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society and of the Academy of Medical Sciences, and a Foreign Associate of the US National Academy of Sciences. He is the recipient of many honors.

Dobson’s work is described in more than 800 peer-reviewed papers and review articles. Dobson’s current h-index (Google Scholar) is over 140 making him one of the world’s most highly cited scientists. He has given nearly 50 named lectures at universities and research institutes around the world as well as delivering hundreds of seminars, and has been awarded five honorary degrees in science and medicine. He has given over 500 invited, keynote and plenary lectures at international scientific conferences, and thereby contributed very substantially to raising awareness of the challenges associated with protein misfolding disorders. His research group has achieved many of its successes by establishing a wide range of long-term interdisciplinary and international collaborations that act as a model for modern approaches to addressing complex biomedical problems.

Speaker Biography

Jin-Quan Yu received his B.S. in Chemistry at East China Normal University, with Professors Li-Xin Dai and Bi-Qi Wu as a visiting student at the Shanghai Institute of Organic Chemistry, (SIOC) Chinese Academy of Sciences (CSC) in 1987. After a one-year course study at the SIOC, he went to Guangzhou Institute of Chemistry, CSC, to study terpene chemistry and heterogeneous catalysis under the supervision of Professor Shu-De Xiao, where he obtained his Master’s degree in 1990. He then went to Cambridge University for his doctoral studies under the supervision of Professor J. B. Spencer, where he studied biosynthesis and the mechanistic details of the hydrometallation step in asymmetric hydrogenation. Jin-Quan was elected as a Junior Research Fellow of St John’s College, Cambridge University in 1998, and from 2001-2002 he worked on Pd-catalyzed allylic oxidation as a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University in the laboratory of Professor E. J. Corey. After returning to Cambridge University, he was appointed as a University Royal Society Research Fellow in 2003, and stared his independent research towards developing asymmetric C–H insertion reactions. In 2004, he moved to Brandeis University as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry. He joined The Scripps Research Institute as an Associate Professor in 2007, became a full Professor in August 2010, and was appointed as the Frank and Bertha Hupp Professor of Chemistry in 2012.

Speaker Biography

Stefanie Dehnen obtained her diploma in 1993 and her doctoral degree in 1996 from the University of Karlsruhe (KIT) under the supervision of Dieter Fenske on experimental and theoretical investigations of copper sulfide and selenide clusters. After a postdoctoral stay with Reinhart Ahlrichs (1997) she completed her Habilitation in Inorganic Chemistry in 2004. In the same year she was awarded the Wöhler Young Scientists Award from the German Chemical Society (Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker, GDCh). In 2005, she received a Heisenberg Grant from German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG) and the State-of-Baden-Württemberg Teaching Award. Since 2006 she has been Full Professor of Inorganic Chemistry at Philipps University of Marburg, while she declined several calls from other universities in the meantime. In 2006, she also became Director and from 2012-2014, she was Executive Director of the Scientific Center of Materials Science at Philipps-Universität Marburg. She is currently an elected member of the Board of the Division for Inorganic Chemistry (Wöhler-Vereinigung für Anorganische Chemie) at GDCh, elected member and spokesperson of the Review Board (Fachkollegium) for Molecular Chemistry at DFG, and Editorial Board or Editorial Advisory Board Member of several scientific journals. As from 2016, she has been a full member of Göttingen Academy of Sciences and Humanity (Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Göttingen) and a full member of Academy of Sciences and Literature, Mainz (Akademie der Wissenschaften und der Literatur Mainz). Her current research interests comprise synthesis, formation mechanisms, stability, reactivity, and physical properties of compounds with binary and ternary chalcogenidometalate anions, organotetrel chalcogenide compounds, binary Zintl anions and ternary intermetalloid clusters.


Biological catalysis

Speaker Biography

1993–1997 PhD thesis at the Institute of Microbiology, Academy of Sciences, Russia
1997–1998 Postdoctoral fellow, Institute of Technical Biochemistry, University of Stuttgart, Germany
1998–2000 Postdoctoral fellow, Institute of Biotechnology, University of Halle-Wittenberg, Halle an der Saale, Germany
2001–2008 Habilitation candidate, Institute of Technical Biochemistry, University of Stuttgart
2006 Guest scientist at the Division of Applied Life Sciences, Kyoto University
Since 2010 University professor for Biochemistry, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany

Catalysis at the homo/hetero/bio interface

Speaker Biography

Unni Olsbye is Professor and leader of the Catalysis Section at the Chemistry Department of the University of Oslo (UiO). She is author of more than 140 scientific papers (H-index 44) and holds several patents. Her field of expertise is heterogeneously catalysed processes with emphasis on structure-composition-function correlations and mechanistic studies. In recent years, she has mainly studied microporous catalysts (zeolites, MOFs), but keeps a parallel activity of reactions promoted by supported metal catalysts. Processes studied include methanol to hydrocarbons (olefins and gasoline), methane reforming and partial oxidation to syngas, light alkane dehydrogenation, methyl halide conversion, ethene oligomerisation, ethene oxychlorination and CO2 hydrogenation. Olsbye graduated as a Chemical Engineer from NTNU in 1987, and proceeded to work with Elf Aquitaine (1988-90), on a project which earned her a Ph.D. degree in Chemistry at UiO in 1991. During 1991-2000, she was a scientist, then senior scientist and group leader in the Department of Hydrocarbon Process Chemistry at SINTEF, and in 2000-2001 an R&D manager at NORDOX, before joining  UiO in 2001. Olsbye is full Professor in Chemistry at UiO since 2002. During 2007-2015, she was Managing Director of inGAP (Innovative Natural Gas Processes and Products) – a Norwegian Centre of Excellence for Research-Based Innovation. Olsbye is an elected member of the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters, and of the Norwegian Academy of Technical Sciences; she is Associate Editor of ACS Catalysis, and serves in the Advisory Boards of several research entities and journals.

Heterogeneous catalysis

Speaker Biography

Bert Weckhuysen (49) is full professor Inorganic Chemistry and Catalysis at Utrecht University since 2000. He received his master and PhD degree from Leuven University. He is currently Distinguished University Professor. Weckhuysen has received several awards, including the Emmett Award in Fundamental Catalysis of the North American Catalysis Society, the International Catalysis Award of the International Association of Catalysis Societies, the Spinoza Award from the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research and the Tanabe Prize in Acid-Base Catalysis. In 2015 he has been appointed Knight in the Order of the Netherlands Lion. Weckhuysen is a member of the Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences, Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Sciences and Arts and the European Academy of Sciences. The Weckhuysen group has been active in the design, synthesis, characterization and application of catalytic solids for the conversion of fossil (crude oil & natural gas) and renewable (biomass and waste) feedstock into transportation fuels, chemicals and materials. More recently, research is devoted to the catalytic activation of CO2 and the splitting of water into hydrogen and oxygen. The group is renown for the development of in-situ and operando spectroscopy for studying catalytic solids under realistic conditions. This approach has provided unique insights in the working and deactivation mechanisms of catalytic processes, as well as in the internal architecture of solid catalysts. The goal is to shed detailed new insight in the working principles of catalytic solids while they really work (i.e. high temperatures and pressures, and real-life conditions) and to achieve this he strives to build a “powerful camera” to chemically image heterogeneous catalysts from the level of the reactor down to the level of single atoms and molecules.

Speaker Biography

Speaker Biography

Field of activities:

Theoretical chemistry and catalysis. Main achievements: in heterogeneous catalysis field – explanation of electronic structure of vanadium and molybdenum oxides, alkali-doped systems, oxide systems supported on other materials; clarification of activities of structurally different surface centers; description of surface vacation formation and re-oxidation processes; in homogeneous catalysis field – theoretical modeling of catalytic activity of porphyrins, interpretation of mechanism of interaction of porphyrin with small molecules; elucidation of the mechanism of epoxidation/oxidation of cyclohexene by manganese porphyrin; in enzymatic catalysis field – elucidation of electronic structure/activity of ethylbenzene dehydrogenase (EBDH) enzyme, description of molecular mechanism of ethylbenzene oxidation to +(S)-1-phenylethanol and development of the theoretical multiple regression model coupling experimentally measured kinetic constants to the theoretical parameters

Over 140 papers from Philadelphia list; 2400 citation; 150 lectures at international conferences

Guest editor (J.Mol.Catal., Topics in Catalysis, Appl. Surf. Sci., NATO Science Series; Series II: Math., Phys. and Chem); Member of Editorial Board of Catalysis Letters and Topics in Catalysis

Coordinator of 24 polish and international research projects

Homogeneous catalysis

Speaker Biography

I was born in Oulu, Finland. I became interested in chemistry several years before entering the university, assisted by inspiring teachers, Maija Aksela (currently a Professor of Chemical Education at the University of Helsinki) and Prof. Hans Krieger (Professor of Organic Chemistry at the University of Oulu), who also taught me organic chemistry at the University of Oulu before his retirement. I then joined the research group of Professor Ari Koskinen, graduating with a Ph.D. in 1999.
Between 1999 and 2001, I enjoyed nearly two years of a wonderful time as a postdoctoral associate with Professor K. C. Nicolaou at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California. In 2001, I joined the faculty of Helsinki University of Technology (TKK), and in 2008, the research group moved to the University of Jyväskylä.My research interests include organocatalysis, catalyst design, and total synthesis of natural products.

Speaker Biography

Bioimaging, analysis and diagnostics

Speaker Biography

Ben Schuler is Professor of Molecular Biophysics at the University of Zurich, Switzerland. He investigates the structure, dynamics, folding, and misfolding of proteins with biophysical methods, in particular single-molecule spectroscopy. Ben Schuler studied Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Regensburg, Germany, and at the University of Kent, UK. He received his PhD in Physical Biochemistry from the University of Regensburg in 1998 and did his postdoctoral research in the Laboratory of Chemical Physics at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, USA. Ben Schuler then headed an independent research group at the University of Potsdam in Germany supported by the Emmy Noether Program of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft. He joined the University of Zurich as Assistant Professor in 2004 and was promoted to Full Professor in 2009. He is currently acting director of the Department of Biochemistry and an Affiliated Member of the Department of Physics.

Speaker Biography

Pernilla Wittung-Stafshede obtained a PhD in Physical Chemistry 1996, at Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden. During 1997-1998 she did a postdoc at the Beckman Institute at California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, USA with Harry Gray. In 1999 she started her independent career as an assistant professor in Chemistry at Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. She received tenure and was promoted to associate professor in 2002. In 2004 she moved to Rice University, Houston, Texas, USA, as associate professor with tenure in the Biochemistry and Cell Biology department. After 5 years, in 2008, she returned to Sweden and became full professor in Chemistry at Umeå University in the north of Sweden. She spent 7 years there before moving to Gothenburg in 2015 to the newly-founded Biology and Biological Engineering department, there acting as head of one of its divisions (Chemical Biology). Her research centres around protein (folding) biophysics using an array of biophysical tools, with current focus on mechanisms of metal (copper) transport proteins and amyloid formation. In 2016, she was elected into the Royal Swedish Academy of the Sciences. Over the years, she has trained many young scientists including numerous women and minorities. She was recently elected member of the Biophysical Society Council.

Biomolecular Assembly Processes

Speaker Biography

My main scientific interest has always been protein self-assembly in and more specifically protein aggregation. I completed my PhD in the group of Prof. Daniel Otzen at Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center, Aarhus University focusing on the modulation of protein aggregation studying both extrinsic factors like protein concentration on the aggregation pathway of the model protein FAS1-4 and intrinsic factors like backbone integrity on the aggregation propensity of model peptides of hIAPP. After my PhD I stayed in Prof. Otzens lab as a postdoctoral fellow studying the earlier oligomerizations sages of the aggregation of α-synuclein. In 2013 I was awarded the prestigious Sapere Aude: Young Elite Researcher award from the Danish Independent Research Foundation including a postdoctoral fellowship allowing me to join the group of Prof. Tuomas Knowles at Department of Chemistry, Cambridge University. In Cambridge I studied the aggregation mechanism of functional bacterial amyloids using chemical kinetics and microfluidics techniques. Currently I’m an Assistant Professor at Department of Biomedicine at Aarhus University where I am studying the aggregation of functional bacterial amyloids from various bacterial species and the effects of extrinsic factors like components of host ECM and extracellular DNA and water binding on the aggregation process.

Speaker Biography

Scientific CV:

1988-1993 undergraduate study, Prague Institute of Chemical Technology,

1993-1996 Ph.D. study, Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry (IOCB) , Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic (supervisor Dr. A. Holý)

1997 post-doctoral stay at the Department of Chemistry, Université Catholique de Louvain, Belgium (Prof. L. Ghosez)

since 2003 – Group leader (full time) at the IOCB

since 2011 – Professor (part-time) at the Faculty of Science, Charles University in Prague
1999 Alfred Bader Prize for excellent results in organic and bioorganic chemistry.

2004 Otto Wichterle Premium

2004 Prize of the Academy of Sciences

2015 Praemium Academiae from the Czech Academy of Sciences

2017 elected member of the Learned Society of the Czech Republic

Publications (as in December 2017): author and co-author of 215 papers with over 3800 independent citations (self-citations excluded), h-index 41

Membership in editorial boards:

1998-2011Collect. Czech. Chem. Commun. – Editor-in-Chief

since 2011ChemBioChem – Editorial Advisory Board

since 2011ChemPlusChem – co-chairman of the Editorial Board

since 2013 F1000 faculty member for Chemical biology

 Research interests:

  • medicinal chemistry of nucleosides and nucleotides
  • bioorganic chemistry and chemical biology of nucleic acids
Chemical Biology and Drug Discovery

Speaker Biography

Cheryl Arrowsmith is a Senior Scientist at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and Professor in the Department of Medical Biophysics at the University of Toronto.  She received a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Toronto and carried out postdoctoral research at Stanford University in the area of protein NMR spectroscopy. Dr. Arrowsmith’s research focuses on structural and chemical biology of chromatin and epigenetic regulatory factors especially as relates to cancer.  Dr. Arrowsmith is the Chief Scientist of the Toronto Node of the Structural Genomics Consortium (SGC), a multinational public-private partnership that supports the discovery of new medicines through protein-based open access research.  She leads the SGC’s program to develop chemical probes to chromatin regulators for target validation.

Speaker Biography

Ulrike Eggert is a chemical biologist who has been a Professor of Chemical Biology at King’s College London since 2015. She received her first degree in chemistry from the University of Oxford and her PhD in chemistry from Princeton University, working on vancomycin resistance with Professor Daniel Kahne. She then moved to Harvard Medical School as a Helen Hay Whitney Foundation postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Professor Tim Mitchison, where she first started research on cell division. In 2006, she started her independent career an Assistant Professor at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School and moved to King’s College London in 2011. Riki’s group uses chemical biology and cell biology approaches to study cell division at the process, pathway, protein and metabolite levels. A recent focus has been on understanding the roles lipids, and especially their side chains, play in processes driven by the cytoskeleton. Riki serves on several editorial and advisory boards and is an associate editor for Biochemistry. Her lab is funded by a Wellcome Investigator Award and an ERC Consolidator Grant.

Speaker Biography

Sabine Flitsch graduated with a Diploma in Chemistry from the University of Münster (Germany) and  obtained her DPhil in 1985 from the University of Oxford. She spent three years at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA as a Research Fellow (with H. G. Khorana) before returning to the UK to hold academic positions at the Universities of Exeter, Oxford, Edinburgh and Manchester. She is currently Professor of Biological Chemistry at the University of Manchester with her research group housed at the Manchester Institute of Biotechnology (MIB)

Synthetic biology

Speaker Biography

Donald Hilvert obtained his Ph.D. in Chemistry in 1983 from Columbia University.  Following postdoctoral work at Rockefeller University, he joined the faculty of the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California in 1986 as an Assistant Professor.  He was subsequently promoted to associate Professor in 1989 and full Professor in 1994.  In 1995, he was named the Janet and W. Keith Kellogg II Professor of Chemistry and an affiliate of the Skaggs Institute for Chemical Biology at Scripps.  Since October 1997, he has been Professor in the Laboratory of Organic Chemistry at the ETH Zurich (Zurich, Switzerland).  Professor Hilvert’s research program focuses on understanding how enzymes work and evolve and on mimicking the properties of these remarkable catalysts in the laboratory.  These efforts have been recognized by a number of awards, including the Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award from the American Chemical Society, the Pfizer Award in Enzyme Chemistry, and the Protein Society Emil Thomas Kaiser Award. He also received an honorary doctorate from Uppsala University.

Clean water and air

Speaker Biography

Andrea Schäfer is Professor of Water Process Engineering, Faculty of Chemical and Process Engineering as well as Head of Membrane Technology Department, Institute of Functional Interfaces (IFG) at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology.
Previously she was Professor at the Nelson Mandela African Institute of Science and Technology in Tanzania, East Africa. 2006 to 2013 she was the Chair of Environmental Engineering at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, UK following 3 years as a senior lecturer at the University of Wollongong, Australia and 3 years as postdoc & lecturer at the University of New South Wales, Sydney Australia. She holds four engineering degrees from three countries (Germany, France (2) & Australia) including a PhD from the University of New South Wales in Chemical engineering and has worked in many countries.
Passionate about membrane process engineering she has experience with several membrane processes encompassing predominantly water treatment, desalination, water recycling, remote water supplies and international development. Her work spans from fundamental research to commercialisation projects, from water chemistry and engineering to socio-economic issues relevant to water.
Prof Schäfer has published extensively in high impact journals and authored or edited several books, including ‘Nanofiltration: Principles and Applications’. She collaborates extensively with industry, as well as colleagues in many leading academic institutions (in February 2018 she has 117 journal papers, >100 conference presentations, edited/authored 5 books and >20 book chapters. Her H-factor is 37 (Web of Science) and 51 (Google Scholar).
The Membrane Technology department, of which she is the founding head, is focused on the application of membranes for water applications. This means (I) new membrane materials with higher efficiency (water, energy) and controllable contaminant removal with longer membrane lifetime and reduced cost, (II) fundamental understanding of retention and fouling in complex and realistic water matrices that informs material development and process design; and (III) development of systems that operate long term in the most difficult circumstances (e.g. developing countries, natural disaster, extreme conditions) with adequate operation & maintenance, with technical, environmental, socio-cultural and economic sustainability.
At KIT she is further leading a strategic initiative under the Helmholtz programme Science & Technology of Nanosystems (STN) to develop nanostructured membranes.

Speaker Biography

Lucy Carpenter received her BSc (Hons) in Chemistry from the University of Bristol and studied for a PhD (awarded 1996) in the subject of radical chemistry of the lower atmosphere at the University of East Anglia supervised by Prof Stuart Penkett. After postdoctoral research at UEA with Prof Peter Liss FRS and Prof Bill Sturges, and the University of Leeds with Prof Mike Pilling and Prof Dwayne Heard, she was appointed to a lectureship at the Department of Chemistry, University of York in 2000 and was awarded a personal chair in 2009.    Lucy has remained at York since her first appointment and is now Deputy Head – Research of the Chemistry Department.  Her research focuses on the atmospheric chemistry and impact of processes in the marine atmosphere and on long-term monitoring of atmospheric composition changes.  Lucy is co-founder of the University of York atmospheric chemistry group, now the largest in the UK (Wolfson Atmospheric Chemistry Laboratories). Her research has been recognised by the award of a Philip Leverhulme Prize in ‘Earth Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences’ in 2006, the Royal Society Rosalind Franklin Award in 2015, and the RSC Tilden Prize in 2017.

Fuel cells and batteries

Speaker Biography

Clare P. Grey is the Geoffrey Moorhouse-Gibson Professor of Chemistry at Cambridge University and a Fellow of Pembroke College Cambridge.  She received a BA and D. Phil. (1991) in Chemistry from the University of Oxford.  After post-doctoral fellowships in the Netherlands and at DuPont CR&D in Wilmington, DE, she joined the faculty at Stony Brook University (SBU) as an Assistant (1994), Associate (1997) and then Full Professor (2001-2015).  She moved to Cambridge in 2009, maintaining an adjunct position at SBU.  She was director (2009-2010) and associate director (2011-2014) of the Northeastern Chemical Energy Storage Center, a DOE Energy Frontier Research Center.  She is currently the director of the EPSRC Centre for Advanced Materials for Integrated Energy Systems (CAM-IES) (Dec 2016 – present). Recent honors/awards include the Research Award from the International Battery Association (2013), the Royal Society Davy Award (2014), the Arfvedson-Schlenk-Preis from the German Chemical Society (2015), the Société Chimique de France, French-British Prize (2017) and the International Solid State Ionics Galvani-Nernst-Wagner Mid-Career Award (2017) – of which she is the first recipient. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society and in 2017 was elected as a Foreign member of the American Academy of Arts and Science and Fellow of the Electrochemical Society. Her current research interests include the use of solid state NMR and diffraction-based methods to determine structure-function relationships in materials for energy storage (batteries and supercapacitors), conversion (fuel cells) and carbon capture.

New approaches to clean fuels

Speaker Biography

Jingguang Chen is the Thayer Lindsley Professor of chemical engineering at Columbia University, with a joint appointment as a senior chemist at Brookhaven National Laboratory.  His research focuses on experimental and theoretical studies of metal carbides and bimetallic alloys for applications in catalysis and electrocatalysis.  He is the co-author of 21 United States patents and over 350 journal publications. He has been actively involved in various leadership positions in the catalysis community in the United States. He is the lead-PI and a founding member of the Synchrotron Catalysis Consortium to assist catalysis researchers to utilize synchrotron techniques. He was a founding member and served as the Chair of the Catalysis Division of the American Chemical Society. He is currently the President of the North American Catalysis Society.  He is an associate editor of ACS Catalysis.

Solar photovoltaics

Speaker Biography

Alex Jen is currently serving as the Provost of the City University of Hong Kong. Before his current post, he was the Boeing-Johnson Chair Professor and Chair of the Department of Materials Science & Engineering at the University of Washington. His research interest is focused on utilizing molecular, polymeric and biomacromolecular self-assembly to create ordered arrangement of organic and inorganic functional materials for photonics, opto-electronics, nanomedicine, and nanotechnology. He has co-authored more than 825 publications, given over 500 invited presentations, and has >36,000 citations with a H-index of 97. He is also a co-inventor for more than 50 patents and invention disclosures.

For his pioneering contributions in organic photonics and electronics, he was elected as AAAS, MRS, ACS, PMSE, OSA, and SPIE Fellow. He has also been appointed as the Changjiang Endowed Chair by the Chinese Ministry of Education, as the World Class University Professor by the Korean National Research Foundation, and as the Distinguished Chair Professor by the National Taiwan University. He has also been elected as an Academician by the Washington State Academy of Sciences.

Speaker Biography

Bo Albinsson has MSc and PhD degrees from Chalmers University of Technology and was post-doctoral fellow at the University of Colorado before returning to Sweden as an assistant professor funded by the Swedish research council in 1995. In 2003 he became full professor of Physical Chemistry at Chalmers and has since then been leading a medium size research group. In the Albinsson research group we are interested in photo-induced processes ranging from mechanistic studies of energy and electron transfer reactions with relevance for solar energy research to novel functionalized nanostructures based on DNA nanotechnology. We use advanced laser-based time-resolved spectroscopic techniques combined with optical spectroscopy and theoretical (quantum mechanical) methods. Bo Albinsson was Head of the Department/Division of Chemistry and Biochemistry (2006-2014) and is today Director of the Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Area of Advance at Chalmers which involves some 200 researchers mainly from the Physics, Chemistry and Microtechnology and Nanoscience departments. He is often recruited as evaluator and reviewer both nationally and internationally and is since 2015 associated editor for the Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics journal (PCCP).

Sustainable use of resources and green chemistry

Speaker Biography

Gabriele Centi is full professor of Industrial Chemistry at the University of Messina, Italy, and President of the European Research Institute of Catalysis (ERIC). Research interests are in the areas of applied heterogeneous catalysis, sustainable energy and chemical processes, biomass conversion and environment protection.

He was coordinator of the EU Network of Excellence IDECAT, and is actually President of IACS (International Association of Catalysis Societies) and vice-President of the InterUniversity Consortium on the Science and Technology of Materials (INSTM). He was coordinator or PI in over twenty EU projects, besides many other national and industrial projects. He received several awards, and is involved in various editorial activities, between which chairing the editorial board of ChemSusChem and be co-editor in chief of Journal of Energy Chemistry.

He is author of over 450 scientific publications, 12 books and editor of various special issues. Current h-index is 74 with about 20.000 citations (Google Scholar).


Speaker Biography

Stuart is Professor of Inorganic Chemistry at Queen’s University Belfast. His current research interests are in mechanochemical synthesis and porous liquids. He has investigated the synthesis of a range of products by mechanochemical means, initially using ball mills and latterly twin screw extrusion, which allows for continuous production at scale. In 2012 he co-founded MOF Technologies based around his own IP to manufacture MOFs mechanochemically. He has also put forward the initial concept of liquids with permanent microporosity and in 2017 co-founded Porous Liquid Technologies to accelerate the commercialisation of that technology.

Bioinorganic chemistry

Speaker Biography

Carole Duboc received her PhD from the University of Grenoble in 1998 under the supervision of Professor Marc Fontecave and Doctor Stephane Menage. Following postdoctoral position at the University of Minnesota, with Professor William Tolman, she joined the High Magnetic Field Laboratory at Grenoble in 2000 and the Department of Molecular Chemistry at Grenoble in 2007, where she is now CNRS senior researcher. Her current research interests are on the elucidation of the electronic structure of transition metal ion complexes using an original approach combining experimental and theoretical data and on bio-inspired complexes containing metal-sulfur bond(s) to develop structural and/or functional models of metalloenzymes.

Inorganic reaction mechanisms

Speaker Biography

Shin-ichi Ohkoshi is a Professor of Chemistry at The University of Tokyo. He received his Ph.D. from Tohoku University in 1995. In 1997, he moved to The University of Tokyo as a Research Associate, and became a Lecturer in 2000. In 2003, he was promoted to an Associate Professor, and since 2006 he has been a full Professor in the Department of Chemistry at The University of Tokyo. He is additionally appointed to the Vice Dean of the School of Science in The University of Tokyo, the Director of Cryogenic Research Center in The University of Tokyo, and the Director of France CNRS International Associated Laboratory. He served as an invited Professor at the University of Bordeaux I, France in 2007, the University of Pierre and Marie Curie, France in 2008, and an Honorary Professor of Durham University, U.K. in 2009–2011.

Publication: 429 papers, Patent: 176 applications, Invited presentation: 178, h-index: 57, total citations: over 10000 (web of science).
Awards: Japan Academy Medal in 2008, IBM Japan Science Prize in 2009, Ichimura Achademic Award in 2014, Inoue Prize for Science in 2015, and Mukai Award in 2017, etc.
Current research interests: His research interests are in the areas of inorganic chemistry and physical chemistry, i.e., magnetic materials, phase transition materials, nanomagnetic materials, light-induced phase transition, etc.

Main group chemistry

Speaker Biography

Didier Bourissou, born in Nice (1972) studied chemistry at the Ecole Normale Superieure in Paris and obtained his Ph D. degree in 1998 under the supervision of G. Bertrand in Toulouse (Dina Surdin Award). He then worked with F. Mathey and P. Le Floch at the Ecole Polytechnique in Palaiseau as a research associate. He was appointed as a CNRS junior researcher in 1998. Since 2006, he holds a senior scientist position (Directeur de Recherche) at the CNRS and an Associate Professor position at the Ecole Polytechnique in Palaiseau. He is Director of the Laboratory of Fundamental and Applied Heterochemistry at the University Paul Sabatier in Toulouse since 2011.

He was awarded the Bronze (2005) and Silver (2016) Medals of the CNRS (French National Research Council), the Clavel Lespiau Distinction (2006) from the French Academy of Sciences) and the Acros Award (2009) from the French Chemical Society in recognition of his work.

His research interests concern new bonding situations and reactivity patterns arising from the interplay between transition metals and main group elements. He has initiated the development of ambiphilic ligands in the mid 2000’s and moved forward the concept of s-acceptor ligands. Part of his research also deals with non-innocent pincer complexes and unusual behavior of the coinage metals, in particular gold. He is also interested in biodegradable polymers (ring-opening polymerization, organic and dual catalysis, drug delivery systems).

Transition metal chemistry

Speaker Biography

Jesper Bendix obtained his Ph.D. in Chemistry in 1998 from University of Copenhagen under the supervision of Prof. C. E. Schäffer. Following post-doctoral stays in Mülheim, Germany with Prof. K. Wieghardt, at Caltech, USA, with Prof. H. B. Gray, at the University of Utah with Prof. J. S. Miller, and in Berne, Switzerland, with Dr P. L. W. Tregenna-Piggott, he returned to University of Copenhagen where he is currently heading the Section for Inorganic Chemistry. He has published ca. 140 research papers mostly in coordination chemistry. He is recipient of the Ellen and Niels Bjerrum chemistry prize and elected member of the Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters. His current research focuses on synthesis as well as electronic and structural studies of molecule-based magnetic materials with emphasis on structural control and building-block approaches to magnetic systems. In parallel he is studying synthesis and the electronic structure of high-valent metal centers with strongly donating ligands from the isoelectronic series: carbide, nitride, oxide and fluoride.

Speaker Biography

Wolfgang Schmitt is a Professor and Head of the Inorganic and Materials Chemistry division at the School of Chemistry at Trinity College Dublin. He studied Chemistry at the Technical University Darmstadt (TU), Germany and graduated as Dipl. Ing. (Chemistry) in 1999. He was awarded the Dr. Anton Keller Prize from the University of Darmstadt and received his Ph.D. from the University of Karlsruhe in 2002. From 2002-2003 he worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the Royal Institution of Great Britain. In March 2003 he was selected to join the International Centre for Young Scientists at the National Institute for Materials Sciences in Tsukuba, Japan as an independent research fellow. He joined the faculty of Trinity College Dublin in 2005.

Prof. Schmitt’s research interests focus on the supramolecular chemistry of hybrid organic-inorganic materials aiming to exploit these advanced materials for sustainable energy applications, catalysis and magnetic devices. Current activities focus on the synthesis and characterisation of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) for gas storage and application in catalysis, CO2 fixation/activation, biomimetic syntheses, self-assembly processes, synthetic approaches to nanoscopic clusters (polyoxometalates and other coordination clusters) and molecular coordination cages. He published ca. 80 peer reviewed papers that appeared for instance in Nature Communications, Angewandte Chemie, Chemical Science, Journal of the American Chemical Society and Chemical Communications. During his time at Trinity College Dublin, Prof. Schmitt received research funding from the European Research Council (ERC consolidator grant), Science Foundation Ireland (SFI Principal Investigator grants, Research Frontiers Project and TIDA grants), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Irish Research Council (IRC) and Enterprise Ireland (EI), etc. He is the co-founder of the Trinity College Campus Company ‘Trinity Green Energies’.


Speaker Biography

Matt holds a personal chair joint between the Department of Chemistry and the Medical School at the University of Warwick. He completed his undergraduate and PhD at the University of Durham, UK (1999 – 2007) followed by a Postdoc with Prof Harm-Anton Klok at EPFL Switzerland. He has been at Warwick since 2009 as a Science City Research Fellow, Assistant, Associate and since 2016, Full Professor.
Research in the GibsonGroup is focussed on addressing global healthcare challenges using polymer and carbohydrate science. In particular, the group has developed bio-inspired polymers to enhance the cryopreservation of donor cells, new diagnostics for pathogen identification and development of anti-infective materials.
Matt was awarded the 2012 MacroGroup Young researchers medal, a 2014 RSC emerging technologies prize, 2015 Dextra medal, 2015 PAT young talent prize and holds an ERC starter grant.

Functional materials and their electronic, magnetic and optical properties

Speaker Biography

Prof. Claudia Felser studied chemistry and physics at the University of Cologne (Germany) and completed her doctorate in physical chemistry there in 1994. After postdoctoral fellowships at the MPI in Stuttgart and the CNRS in Nantes (France), she joined the University of Mainz and became a full professor at the University of Mainz (Germany) in 2003. She is currently director at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids in Dresden (Germany). She was honored as the distinguished lecturer of the IEEE Magnetic Society and in 2011 and 2017 she received an ERC Advanced grant. She won the Nakamura lecture award of the UC Santa Barbara, the 2014-Alexander M. Cruickshank Lecturer Award of the Gordon Research Conference and received the SUR-grant Award of IBM. In 2014 she received the Tsungmin Tu Research Prize (75 000$) by the Ministry of Science and Technology of Taiwan, the highest academic honor granted to foreign researchers in Taiwan. She is a fellow of the American Physical Society and the Institute of Physics, London and since 2018 a member of the Leopoldina, the German National Academy of Sciences.

Speaker Biography

Matthew Rosseinsky obtained a degree and a D. Phil in Chemistry from the University of Oxford in 1990. He was a Postdoctoral Member of Technical Staff at A.T.&T. Bell Laboratories then in 1992 was appointed University Lecturer in Chemistry at the University of Oxford. In 1999 he moved to the University of Liverpool as Professor of Inorganic Chemistry. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2008, and was awarded the Hughes Medal of the Royal Society in 2011. In 2013 he became a Royal Society Research Professor.  He was awarded the inaugural de Gennes Prize for Materials Chemistry (a lifetime achievement award open internationally) by the Royal Society of Chemistry in 2009, the C.N.R. Rao Award of the Chemical Research Society of India in 2010 and gave the Muetterties Lectures at UC Berkeley and Lee Lectures at the University of Chicago in 2017. He was awarded the Davy Medal of the Royal Society in 2017. His work addresses the synthesis of new functional materials in bulk and thin film form for energy and information storage applications, and has been characterised by extensive collaboration with many academic and industrial colleagues. Current areas of interest include materials for batteries and solid oxide fuel cells, multiferroics, thermoelectrics, superconductivity, materials for separations and catalysis, high-throughput materials discovery, and materials for solar energy conversion. His group is developing an integrated computational and experimental approach to materials discovery, including new tools for crystal structure prediction.

Speaker Biography

Marcel Mayor received his PhD (1995) from the University of Bern supervised by Professor Rolf Scheffold and Professor Lorenz Walder. After working with Professor Jean-Marie Lehn at the University Louis Pasteur in Strasbourg and at the Collège de France in Paris, he founded his own research group at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in 1998. On defending his habilitation in 2002, he became Professor of Chemistry at the University of Basel in 2004. His current research interests are supramolecular chemistry, molecular electronics, nanoscale architectures, functional materials and hybrid materials.

Materials governed by scale and dimensionality

Speaker Biography

Sophie Carenco graduated in 2008 from Ecole Polytechnique, in France. She obtained her PhD in 2011 from UPMC, Paris (now Sorbonne Université), for her work on the synthesis and applications of metal phosphide nanoparticles. From 2012 to 2013, she was a post-doctoral fellow at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, Berkeley, California, where she used synchrotron-based in situ spectroscopies to monitor the surface state of metal nanoparticles during model catalytic reactions. In 2014, she joined CNRS as a researcher in the Materials Science department of Sorbonne Université, Paris.

She works on developing novel synthetic routes for nanoparticles (metals, metal phosphides, metal oxysulfides, metal carbides) of controlled composition and surface state, with applications in reactivity and catalysis. She was awarded the European Young Chemist Award in 2010, the C’Nano National Award in 2012, the L’Oreal-UNESCO Fellowship in 2014 and an ERC Starting Grant in 2017. She is also involved in scientific outreach and published in 2012 a book about nanomaterials and chemistry. She is one of the founding members of the International Younger Chemists Network, created in 2017 in Brazil, and currently serves in the board.

Speaker Biography

Yoshio Bando has completed his Ph.D from Osaka University in 1975 and joined the National Institute for Research in Inorganic Materials (at present National Institute for Materials Science, NIMS) the same year.  He has been a Fellow of NIMS and a Chief Operating Officer (COO) of International Center for Materials Nanoarchitectonics (WPI-MANA) until April 2017.  He is  now an Executive Advisor of MANA and also a Distinguished Professor at University of Wollongong, Australia.  He has received a number of awards including the “Sacred Treasure” from the Emperor, the 3rd Thomson Reuters Research Front Award (2012), the 16th Tsukuba Prize (2005), the Academic Awards from Japanese Ceramic Society (1997) and others.  He is admitted as Fellows of The American Yoshio Bando has completed his Ph.D from Osaka University in 1975 and joined the National Institute for Research in Inorganic Materials (at present National Institute for Materials Science, NIMS) the same year.  He has been a Fellow of NIMS and a Chief Operating Officer (COO) of International Center for Materials Nanoarchitectonics (WPI-MANA) until April 2017.  He is now an Executive Advisor of MANA and also a Distinguished Professor at University of Wollongong, Australia. He will join a professor at Institute of Molecular Plus, Tianjin University, China. He has received a number of awards including the “Sacred Treasure” from the Emperor, the 3rd Thomson Reuters Research Front Award (2012), the 16th Tsukuba Prize (2005), the Academic Awards from Japanese Ceramic Society (1997) and others.  He is admitted as Fellows of The American Ceramic Society and The Royal Society of Chemistry. He has been selected as ISI Highly Cited Researchers in Materials Science in 2012, 2014, 2015 2016, and 2017.  To date he has authored more than 730 original research papers which have been cited more than 39,000 times at H-factor of 104.   His research concentrates on synthesis and property of novel inorganic 1D/2D nanomaterials and their in-situ TEM analysis. Ceramic Society and The Royal Society of Chemistry. He has been selected as ISI Highly Cited Researchers in Materials Science in 2012, 2014, 2015 2016, and 2017.  To date he has authored more than 730 original research papers which have been cited more than 39,000 times at H-factor of 104.   His research concentrates on synthesis and property of novel inorganic 1D/2D nanomaterials and their in-situ TEM analysis.

Soft control: macromolecules and smart polymers

Speaker Biography

Eva Malmström, Professor Coating Technology at KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden. She earned her PhD from KTH in 1996 and after one year as a post-doctoral fellow in the group of Dr Craig Hawker at IBM Almaden Research Center she returned to KTH. In 2005 she became full professor. During 2009-2016 she was the deputy president of KTH. Research interests: controlled polymerizations, nanocomposites, adhesives, bio-based monomers.

Un-conventional syntheses of inorganic solids

Speaker Biography

Wolfgang Schnick studied chemistry in Hannover. After a year as a postdoc fellow at the Max-Planck Institute for solid-state research in Stuttgart, he finished his habilitation in 1992 at the University of Bonn. In 1993 he was appointed as full professor at the University of Bayreuth. Since 1998 he has held the chair of inorganic solid-state chemistry at the University of Munich (LMU). His research interests are dedicated to the discovery, development and application of novel functional materials based on main group element nitrides and oxonitrides. Advanced synthetic approaches are being developed exploiting high-temperature and high-pressure techniques (e.g. multianvil, diamond anvil cells, ammonothermal approach, hot isostatic press). Recent research highlights of the Schnick group include novel synthetic approaches to nitridoaluminates, nitridosilicates and nitridophosphates, structure elucidation of binary -P3N5 and its high-pressure polymorph -P3N5, discovery of the first nitridic zeolites (NPO and NPT) and clathrate structures as well as important carbon nitride precursor compounds, e.g. melam, melem and melon as well as the 2D polymeric carbon nitride-type materials poly(heptazine imide) PHI and poly(triazine imide) PTI. A major application breakthrough has been achieved by the discovery and development of highly efficient Eu2+-doped nitridosilicate, oxonitridosilicate and nitridoaluminate luminescent materials that are now being industrially used for phosphor converted (pc)-LEDs.

Molecular machines and designed materials

Speaker Biography

Prof. Nicolas Giuseppone is director of the Research Federation on Materials and Nanoscience of Strasbourg. He received his PhD in asymmetric catalysis (laboratory of Prof. H.B. Kagan), performed a post-doctoral research in total synthesis (laboratory of Prof. K.C. Nicolaou), and entered the field of supramolecular chemistry as a CNRS researcher (laboratory of Prof. J.-M. Lehn). In 2008 he started his own research group, and was awarded an ERC Starting Grant from the European Research Council in 2010. In 2013 he was nominated as a junior member of the Institut Universitaire de France (IUF), and promoted Distinguished Professor at the University of Strasbourg in 2016.

His research interests are focused on supramolecular chemistry, molecular machines and functional materials.

Organic reaction mechanisms

Speaker Biography

Peter R. Schreiner is professor of organic chemistry and Liebig-Chair at the Justus-Liebig University Giessen. He studied chemistry in his native city at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, Germany, where he received his Dr. rer. nat. (1994) in Organic Chemistry. Simultaneously, he obtained a PhD (1995) in Computational Chemistry from the University of Georgia, USA. He completed his habilitation at the University of Göttingen (1999). P. R. Schreiner is a member of the Leopoldina – German National Academy of Sciences, the 2003 recipient of the Dirac Medal, and received the Adolf-von-Baeyer Memorial Award 2017. He currently serves as an Editor for the Journal of Computational Chemistry, as Editor-in-Chief for WIRES – Computational Molecular Sciences, Associate Editor for the Beilstein Journal of Organic Chemistry.

Organic synthesis and methodology

Speaker Biography

Antonio M. Echavarren received his PhD at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM, 1982) with Prof. Francisco Fariña. After a postdoctoral stay in Boston College with Prof. T. Ross Kelly, he joined the UAM as an Assistant Professor. Following a two years period as a NATO-fellow with Prof. John K. Stille in Fort Collins (Colorado State University), he joined the Institute of Organic Chemistry of the CSIC in Madrid. In 1992 he returned to the UAM as a Professor of Organic Chemistry and in 2004 he moved to Tarragona as a Group Leader at the Institute of Chemical Research of Catalonia (ICIQ). He has been Liebig Lecturer (Organic Division, German Chemical Society, 2006), Abbot Lecturer in Organic Chemistry (University of Illinois at Urbana-Campaign, 2009), Schulich Visiting Professor (Technion, Haifa, 2011), Sir Robert Robinson Distinguished Lecturer (University of Liverpool, 2011), Novartis Lecturer in Organic Chemistry (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2015) and Kurt Alder Lecturer 2017 (University of Cologne). In 2012, he got a European Research Council Advanced Grant and in 2014 he was the president of the 49th EUCHEM Conference on Stereochemistry (Bürgenstock conference). Prof. Echavarren is a member of the International Advisory Board of Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry, Chemical Society Reviews, Advanced Synthesis and Catalysis, and Organic Letters, member of the Editorial Board of Chemistry European Journal, and Associate Editor of Chemical Communications. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry. He received the 2004 Janssen-Cylag Award in Organic Chemistry and the 2010 Gold Medal of the Royal Spanish Chemical Society and an Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award from the ACS.

Speaker Biography

Tibor Soós was born in Miskolc, Hungary, and obtained his M.Sc. degree from the Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, Hungary (1995) and his Ph.D. degree (1998) with György Hajós, (Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Institute of Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry). He subsequently held postdoctoral positions at University of Utah (John A. Gladysz, 1999), University of Erlangen (John A. Gladysz, Humboldt fellowship, 2000-2001). After returning to the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, he was appointed as a group leader and started his independent research program. His research spans a wide range of problems in the general areas of synthetic and mechanistic organic chemistry, and catalysis. Among many others, he has developed bifunctional thiourea organocatalysts which have been broadly utilized in academic and industrial settings. His current research focuses on the development of frustrated Lewis pairs for synthetic applications.

Supramolecular chemistry and self-assembly

Speaker Biography

Sijbren Otto (born 1971) received his M.Sc. (1994) and Ph.D. (1998) degrees cum laude from the University of Groningen in the Netherlands working on physical organic chemistry in water with Prof. Jan B. F. N. Engberts. In 1998 he moved to the USA for a year as a postdoctoral researcher with Prof. Steven L. Regen (Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania) investigating synthetic systems mediating ion transport through lipid bilayers. In 1999 he received a Marie Curie Fellowship and moved to the University of Cambridge where he worked for two years with Prof. Jeremy K. M. Sanders on dynamic combinatorial libraries.

Sijbren started his independent research career in 2001 as a Royal Society University Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge and accepted an appointment at the University of Groningen in 2009 where his is currently Full Professor and Director of the Chemistry MSc degree program. His research focusses on Systems Chemistry and in particular on the de-novo synthesis of life.

Sijbren was awarded ERC starting (2010) and advanced (2017) grants from the EU and a VICI grant from NWO in the Netherlands.  He is joint editor-in-chief of the re-launched Journal of Systems Chemistry and Chair of COST Action CM1304 on the subject of Systems Chemistry uniting more than 90 European research groups.

Speaker Biography

Steven De Feyter is full professor at the Department of Chemistry at KU Leuven, in Belgium. After his PhD in 1997 (promotor: Frans De Schryver), he moved to Caltech to work with Ahmed Zewail, on femtochemistry. He returned to Leuven and set-up a team investigating “molecules on surfaces”.

Nano(bio)chemistry on surfaces is the core activity of the group. To please our “seeing is believing” desire, we use high-resolution scanning probe microscopy techniques such as scanning tunneling microscopy and atomic force microscopy, sometimes combined with optical microscopy techniques, to unravel the beauty and function of multi-(bio)molecular assemblies on surfaces. The liquid-solid interface is our preferred playground.

Steven is Associate Editor of Chemical Communications since 2011. He was awarded an ERC Advanced Grant in 2013.


Advances in analytical chemistry and methods

Speaker Biography

Petra Dittrich is Associate Professor for Bioanalytics at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering at ETH Zürich, Switzerland, since 2014. Her research in the field of lab-on-chip-technologies focuses on the miniaturization of high-sensitivity devices for chemical and biological analyses, and microfluidic-aided organization of materials.

She studied chemistry at Bielefeld University (Germany) and Universidad de Salamanca (Spain) from 1993 to 1999. She earned her PhD degree at the Max Planck-Institute for Biophysical Chemistry (MPI Göttingen, Germany) in 2003. After another year as postdoctoral fellow at the MPI Göttingen, she had a postdoctoral appointment at the Institute for Analytical Sciences (ISAS Dortmund, Germany) (2004-2008). From 2008-2014, she was Assistant Professor at the Organic Chemistry Laboratories of the Department of Chemistry and Applied Biosciences (ETH Zurich).

Speaker Biography

Dr. Apak received B.S./M.Sc. degrees in chemical engineering (Istanbul Univ., 1976); obtained postgraduate diploma in marine pollution (Liverpool Univ., 1981); obtained Ph.D. (1982), became professor (1993) of analytical chemistry. He is the editorial board member of Turkish J. Chem. (1996- ) and Talanta (2004- ). He represents Turkey in the Analytical Chemistry Division of IUPAC (2006- ). Dr. Apak is the author of 220 peer-reviewed research articles, book chapters and reviews, three textbooks, receiving 6100 citations in journals covered by SCI (Science Citation Index), with Hirsch Index h=38 (No. of citations=8650 and h-index=44, according to Google Academic) by Nov., 2017. His work is focused on method development for antioxidants and other food constituents, explosives, biologically and environmentally important compounds.

Advances in physical chemistry

Speaker Biography

Brian A. Korgel is the Edward S. Hyman Chair in Engineering and T. Brockett Hudson Professor of Chemical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin.  He directs the Industry/University Research Center (I/UCRC) for Next Generation Photovoltaics and the Emerging Technologies area of the UT|Portugal program; he is the Education Director for the Center for Dynamics and Control of Materials MRSEC at UT Austin; and he is an Associate Editor of Chemistry of Materials.  He received his PhD in Chemical Engineering from UCLA in 1997 and was a post-doctoral fellow at University College Dublin, Ireland, in the Department of Chemistry.  He works at the intersection of nano & mesoscopic materials chemistry and complex fluids, tackling problems in energy storage, chemical transformations, energy harvesting and conversion, and medicine. He is also an artist, exploring collaboration, language and human-artificial intelligence/robot cohabitation.  He has published more than 250 papers and has been a Visiting Professor at the University of Alicante in Spain, the Université Josef Fourier in France and the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing.  He has co-founded two companies, Innovalight and Piñon Technologies, and received various honors including election to the National Academy of Engineering (NAE), the Professional Progress Award from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) and election to Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Speaker Biography

Giulio Cerullo is a Full Professor with the Physics Department, Politecnico di Milano, where he leads the Ultrafast Optical Spectroscopy laboratory. Prof. Cerullo’s research activity covers a broad area known as “Ultrafast Optical Science”, and concerns on the one hand pushing our capabilities to generate and manipulate ultrashort light pulses, and on the other hand using such pulses to capture the dynamics of ultrafast events in molecular and solid-state systems. Additional research topics are the applications of ultrafast lasers to coherent Raman microscopy and micro/nanostructuring. He is a Fellow of the Optical Society of America and Chair of the Quantum Electronics and Optics Division of the European Physical Society. He is the recipient of an ERC Advanced Grant (2012-2017) on two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy of biomolecules. He is General Chair of the conferences CLEO/Europe 2017, Ultrafast Phenomena 2018 and the International Conference on Raman Spectroscopy 2020.

Computational and theoretical chemistry

Speaker Biography

Fernando Martín graduated in Chemistry, specialty Quantum Chemistry, in 1984 and Physics, specialty Theoretical Physics, in 1986 at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. He received his PhD degree at the same university in 1986. Then, he completed postdoctoral studies at the University of Bordeaux I (1988), the Université de Paris VI (1989-1990) and the University of Chicago (1995-1996). He has been Associate Professor from 1993 to 2005 and since then Full Professor at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. His research work focuses on the computational modeling of the effects of laser light on atoms and molecules, and the properties of new materials and nanoobjects.

Speaker Biography

Giulia Galli is the Liew Family Professor of Electronic Structure and Simulations in the Institute for Molecular Engineering and Professor of Chemistry at the University of Chicago. She also holds a Senior Scientist position at Argonne National Laboratory (ANL). Prior to joining the University of Chicago and ANL, she was Professor of Chemistry and Physics at UC Davis (2005-2013) and the head of the Quantum Simulations group at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (1998-2005). She holds a Ph.D. in Physics from the International School of Advanced Studies (SISSA) in Trieste, Italy. She is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and of the AAAS, and the recipient of the award of excellence from the Department of Energy and of the Science and Technology Award from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. She is currently the director of MICCoM (Midwest Integrated Center for Computational Materials), established by US Department of Energy in 2015. Her research activity is focused on the development and use of theoretical and computational tools to understand and predict the properties and behavior of materials (solids, liquids and nanostructures) from first principles (

Photochemistry / photophysics / electrochemistry

Speaker Biography

Scholes is an expert on electronic energy transfer and molecular excitons. Current research in the Scholes Group concerns design principles and paradigms for directing and regulating light-initiated energy flow in man-made and natural systems, like proteins involved in photosynthesis. A goal is to learn new ways to harness the power of light in chemistry. The Scholes Group combines ultrafast laser spectroscopies—methods such as 2D electronic spectroscopy—with theoretical studies to understand mechanisms of light harvesting, electron transfer, and other photo-initiated processes.

In 2010 we reported that fragile quantum mechanical processes are detected even at physiological temperature in the primary light-harvesting proteins of algae. This work has helped to inspire new research in areas ranging from theoretical quantum physics to chemical dynamics to biology and has been highlighted in magazines including New Scientist (2010, 2011), Wired (2010, 2011), Scientific American (2009, 2010), Science News (2010, 2011), Nature (2011), Focus (2012), Cosmos (2014); national radio (e.g. CBC Quirks and Quarks and BBC Science in Action); and television documentaries such as Invisible Nature (Discovery Channel). Recent work includes development of more revealing metrics for exciton size (delocalization) and several experimental studies of vibrational wavepackets; how they can be characterized, and what they can tell us about electronically coupled molecules and dynamics. This is helping us to elucidate a clearer physical understanding of ‘coherence’ in ultrafast dynamics. A vision underpinning much of our work is to develop experiments that reveal insights into mechanisms and provide strong tests of theoretical models.

Speaker Biography

Helen Fielding received a BA from the University of Cambridge before carrying out research in the field of Rydberg state spectroscopy under the supervision of Professor Tim Softley (University of Oxford DPhil, 1992). She then carried out postdoctoral research as an 1851 Research Fellow in the Department of Physics at the University of Amsterdam before becoming a Lecturer in Physical Chemistry at King’s College London in 1994. She moved as a Professor to University College London in 2003, where she is currently Head of Physical Chemistry. Her current research is focused on employing photoelectron spectroscopy to probe the electronic structure and ultrafast relaxation dynamics of photoexcited systems ranging in complexity from small organic molecules to protein chromophores. During the last 15 years she has designed and built instruments to study neutral molecules in molecular beams, molecular anions generated by electrospray ionisation and, most recently, molecules, ions and proteins in liquid microjets. Her research has been recognised by RSC Harrison (1996), Marlow (2001) and Corday-Morgan (2005) medals and the IOP Moseley medal (2008). Alongside her research, she has made major contributions to the Royal Society of Chemistry which were recognised by an Award for Service in 2017.

Prize Winners

Speaker Biography

European Gold Medal Winner

Ben L. Feringa obtained his PhD degree at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands under the guidance of Professor Hans Wynberg. After working as a research scientist at Shell in the Netherlands and at the Shell Biosciences Centre in the UK, he was appointed lecturer and in 1988 full professor at the University of Groningen and named the Jacobus H. van’t Hoff Distinguished Professor of Molecular Sciences in 2004. He was elected Foreign Honory member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and is member and vice-president of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences. In 2008 he was appointed Academy Professor and was knighted by Her Majesty the Queen of the Netherlands.

The research interest includes stereochemistry, organic synthesis, asymmetric catalysis, optopharma, molecular switches and motors, self-assembly and molecular nanosystems.

Speaker Biography

European Sustainable Chemistry Award Winner

Paul Dyson moved to the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, EPFL) in 2002. He grew up in the UK, completing his doctoral thesis at the University of Edinburgh. Prior to his appointment at the EPFL in Switzerland, he held appointments at Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine and the University of York as a Royal Society University Research Fellow.

Speaker Biography

August-Wilhelm-von-Hofmann-Denkmünze (GDCh Award) Winner

Professor at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) Michael Graetzel directs there the Laboratory of Photonics and Interfaces. He pioneered research on energy and electron transfer reactions in mesoscopic systems and their use to generate electricity and fuels from sunlight. Graetzel created the field of molecular photovoltaics, being the first to conceive and realize photosystems based on dyes as light harvesters that rival the performance of state of the art devices based on solid state p-n junctions. He is credited with moving the solar cell field beyond the principle of light absorption via diodes to the molecular level exploiting the sensitization of three dimensional nanoparticle networks of semiconductors oxides by dyes, pigments or quantum dots for light energy harvesting. Dye sensitizes solar cells are meanwhile commercially produced at the multi-MW-scale for lightweight power supplies and photovoltaic glazings. They engendered perovskite cells, the most exciting break-through in the recent history of photovoltaics. His recent awards include the Zewail Prize for Molecular Science the Global Energy Prize, the Millennium Technology Grand Prize, the Marcel Benoist Prize, the King Faisal International Science Prize, and the Balzan Prize. He is an elected member of the Leopoldina and several other learned societies. He received his Dr. rer.nat from the Technical University of Berlin and holds eleven honorary doctor’s degrees. His publications have received some 240’000 citations (h = 223) demonstrating the strong impact of his scientific work.

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