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In memory of Jack Lewis FRS, Baron Lewis of Newnham

(13 February 1928 - 17 July 2014)

Robinson College and the University of Cambridge Department of Chemistry have joined together to set up a PhD studentship in Chemistry, based at Robinson, in memory of Lord Lewis.  The fund will allow an outstanding PhD candidate to study Chemistry at Cambridge, and will be a fitting tribute to the legacy of Lord Lewis. 


Lord Lewis was the first Warden of Robinson College, overseeing the construction of the main college buildings and the establishment of the academic and social structure of Robinson. 

He came to the Chemistry Department as Jack Lewis in 1970, and during his 25 years there he was a wonderful colleague, an exceptional mentor, an insightful scientist, and exerted a great influence on science in the department and beyond.

Chemistry at Cambridge

The University of Cambridge Chemistry Department is ranked in the top three in the world in terms of research, with about 60 research-active staff.  However, the funding it receives for studentships is declining or restricted to specific areas, which means some of the best candidates in the world are denied the opportunity to not only learn here, but also to make their own contributions to Cambridge.

PhD students are a valued part of our academic community:  they are the future of the academic profession, they begin their teaching careers whilst still PhD students, and when they enter industry and the professions, they take their experience and apply it in productive ways to their chosen field. 

The decline in PhD funding has a wide-reaching impact, with loss of many talented individuals to scientific discovery and teaching, and the wider economic and social impacts that this will have in industry and education.

Fitting Tribute

The Lewis Research Studentship is one small way to redress this problem, and will be a positive reflection of his significant contributions to Robinson College and the Chemistry Department. 

Funding Information

All donations to the memory of Lord Lewis will be earmarked for this studentship, which will be a small reminder of the large impact of his life on the University of Cambridge. It may take some time to raise the endowment needed to make full studentship awards, and during the accumulation period partial awards may be made when funds allow.  These will be used in conjunction with grants from other sources in order to help a young researcher conduct her or his work.   The cost of a three-year studentship is £79,506 and to fully endow the Lord Lewis Research Studentship is £697,000.[*]

Donations in memory of Lord Lewis

Donate via the Robinson College website.


1.  This is based on a three-year PhD programme at the home rate.

2.  Cost per year is estimated to be:  University fee £7,362; maintenance fee £14,140; travel and consumables £5,000. 

3.  Costs are illustrative, and based on 2015/16 fees.

4.  Endowment of £697,000 estimated to generate interest of £26,502 p.a. (at 3.8%).