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Yusuf Hamied Department of Chemistry


Dr Yusuf Hamied, courtesy University of Cambridge

The Department has received a major gift from alumnus Dr Yusuf Hamied which will support research and teaching for generations to come, and will secure the Department's leading position into the future.

Dr Hamied’s generous gift will establish the Yusuf Hamied fund, which will help the Department to continue to attract and support the world’s best and brightest academic talent at all levels. The gift will also establish the Hamied Scholars Programme, which will enable outstanding doctoral students from the UK and around the world to study here.

In recognition of the transformational nature of the gift, the Department has been renamed the Yusuf Hamied Department of Chemistry until 2050.

Dr Hamied is a leader in industry and philanthropy, focusing his attention on education and healthcare. As Chairman of Cipla in the early 2000s, Dr Hamied reduced the cost of treatment for HIV/AIDS in developing countries to under a dollar a day, saving countless lives. To help patients during the COVID-19 pandemic, Cipla is again providing medicines to healthcare organisations at affordable prices, making treatment more accessible [see related story].

The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stephen J Toope remarked: “Yusuf Hamied has demonstrated an unequivocal commitment to changing and improving lives since his time at Cambridge. I am profoundly grateful for his remarkable gift to the Department of Chemistry, which will benefit generations of students and researchers.”


"Cambridge gave me the foundation of an education in chemistry, taught me how to live and showed me how to contribute to society. As a scholarship student myself, I am delighted to be able to support future generations of students. I will always be indebted to this great institution and everything it stands for."  Dr Yusuf Hamied


Head of Department, Dr James Keeler, said: "We are extremely thankful to Dr Hamied for his visionary support for Chemistry at Cambridge which will allow us to respond flexibly to future opportunities. His gift will ensure we continue to attract outstanding scientists who will make the discoveries that help tackle some of the most pressing challenges in global society.”

Dr Hamied is an alumnus and Honorary Fellow of Christ’s College and completed his PhD in this Department in 1960 under the supervision of Nobel Laureate Lord Alexander Todd. He has retained close links with Cambridge over the past 66 years, and in 2018 he endowed one of the world’s oldest academic Chairs in Chemistry, now known as the Yusuf Hamied 1702 Chair, which had been held by Lord Todd.

Among Dr Hamied’s many honours are the Padma Bhushan, one of the highest Indian civilian awards in 2005; an honorary fellowship of the Royal Society of Chemistry in 2012; and an honorary Doctorate of Science from the University of Cambridge in 2014. In 2019 he was elected an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society and a Fellow of the Indian National Science Academy. He received the Department’s Alumni Medal for services to the community in 2016.