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€1.5 million ERC starting grant supports new research

Dr Phipps with 3d yr Phd student Holly Davis courtesy Department of Chemistry Photography

Dr Robert Phipps has received a €1.5 million European Research Council (ERC) starting grant.

Dr Phipps’ research group is developing new methodology in synthetic organic chemistry.  His group currently supports six PhD students, and the grant will allow him to recruit a number of postdocs as well as to purchase equipment to expedite and expand the group’s research.

ERC starting grants are designed to help early career researchers develop their research.  The grants are highly desirable because they provide a considerable sum which can be used relatively flexibly over five years. This enables researchers who are just starting out to recruit members and invest in equipment without the pressure of writing constant grant applications.

Dr Phipps said: “This grant will help continue and further expand our group’s research into incorporating non-covalent interactions in catalytic processes by allowing us to greatly broaden and diversify the projects we are examining in this area, predominantly through recruitment of further researchers to join the group.

“We published our proof-of-concept work that forms the basis of the ERC proposal at the end of last year, and it’s great to see that the ideas and scientific goals going forwards have been well received by the ERC,” said Dr Phipps.

For further reading, seeIon Pair-Directed Regiocontrol in Transition-Metal Catalysis: A Meta-Selective C–H Borylation of Aromatic Quaternary Ammonium Salts, Holly J. Davis, Madalina T. Mihai and Robert J. Phipps, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2016, 138 (39) pp 12759-12762