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Earth-Abundant First Row Transition Metal Catalysis for Diverse Alcohol Functionalization

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

Project Description

Dr Louis Morrill ( is looking for a PhD student to work on the research project “Earth-Abundant First Row Transition Metal Catalysis for Diverse Alcohol Functionalization”.

Research in the Morrill group is focused on inventing new reactions in organic chemistry and developing sustainable catalytic methodologies for synthesis. More details on Dr Morrill’s research program can be found at:

Alcohols are typically widely available, inexpensive and inert towards air, moisture and light, making them highly attractive starting materials for synthesis. The central goal of this PhD studentship will be to develop a variety of catalytic methodologies that enable the one-pot functionalization of commodity alcohol starting materials. Earth-abundant first row transition metal catalysis will be employed for hydrogen transfer processes, allowing simple alcohols to be used as alkylating agents in a variety of important C−N and C−C bond forming processes. Furthermore, through the productive merger with organocatalysis, dual catalytic approaches will be developed, accessing enantioenriched alpha-, beta-, and gamma-functionalized alcohols that would be very difficult or impossible to directly produce via existing methodologies. A highly motivated and dedicated student will gain a thorough training in synthetic organic chemistry and be rewarded with a highly stimulating project that will shape the future of this exciting new research program.

Recent publications from the group in this area include: Org. Lett., 2019, 21, 7914; ACS Catal., 2019, 9, 8575; ChemSusChem, 2019, 12, 2345; J. Org. Chem., 2019, 84, 3715; Org. Biomol. Chem, 2019, 17, 1595; ACS Catal., 2018, 8, 6440

Academic criteria: We require applicants to have a 2.2 BSc or equivalent to be considered for PhD study. Applications are particularly welcome from students with experience in organic synthesis and/or organometallic chemistry.

If English if not your first language then you must fulfil our English Language criteria before the start of your studies. Details of accepted English Language qualifications for admissions can be found here:

Contact for further information
Please contact Dr Louis C. Morrill (Email: ) for further information. Interested applicants should provide details of their qualifications, including a CV and a brief covering letter outlining their motivation and experience for the position. A formal application must also be submitted (see below).

Funding Notes

Applications are invited from self-funded UK, EU and International students all year round.


To apply for this post please follow the link below and clearly state the project title and Dr Louis C. Morrill on the online application.

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