Committee

Dr Nicholas Warren (Chair) is a University Academic Fellow in Polymer Engineering at the University of Leeds. He was awarded an MSci in Chemistry with Industrial Experience from the University of Bristol in 2005. After a brief period working as a formulation chemist, he moved to the University of Sheffield where he obtained a PhD in Polymer Chemistry in 2011. He stayed in Sheffield as a postdoctoral researcher working in the area of polymerisation-induced self-assembly until 2016, when he moved to Leeds to start his independent research career. His current research interests include the development of novel polymer manufacturing systems, controlled-structure biocompatible polymers and block copolymer self-assembly.

Dr Robert Dawson (Treasurer) is a Lecturer in Polymer Chemistry at the University of Sheffield. He received his MChem in Chemistry with German from the University of Liverpool in 2006 and completed his PhD with Prof. Andrew I. Cooper at the same institution graduating in 2010. This was followed by a further two years in the group as a post-doctoral researcher. In 2012 he moved to the Technical University of Berlin as a Marie Curie Intra-European Fellow in the group of Prof. Arne Thomas. He returned to the UK in 2014 working at the University of Bath before moving to Sheffield in 2015.

Dr Lee Fielding (Website & Social Media) is a Lecturer in Polymer Chemistry within the Department of Materials at The University of Manchester. He obtained an MChem in Chemistry from The University of Sheffield in 2008, which was followed by a PhD in 2012 on the synthesis, characterization and applications of colloidal nanocomposite particles from the same institution with Professor Steven P. Armes. He worked as a Postdoctoral Researcher in the same group until 2015, primarily on the preparation of bespoke colloidal particles via RAFT dispersion polymerisation. His current research themes include the development of novel particles for use in the fields of waterborne paints and biomedical diagnostics.

Dr Jessica Gould (Industrial Rep and RAPS2020 organiser) currently works as a Lead Research Scientist at Croda Europe specializing in the development of acrylic polymers for a wide range of applications from Personal Care to Battery Additives. She gained her PhD in synthetic inorganic chemistry under the supervision of Prof. Martin Schröder at The University of Nottingham. Since joining Croda in 2013 she has developed a wide range of expertise in synthesis of new products focusing on tailored dispersants and rheology modifiers.

Dr Matt Unthank (Industrial Engagement) is a Senior Lecturer in Polymer Chemistry within the Department of Applied Sciences at Northumbria University. He was award a PhD in Synthetic Chemistry from The University of Bristol in 2007 and went on to develop expertise in polymer synthesis and process scale-up through leadership roles within AkzoNobel. His background centres around the development of proprietary polymers and polymeric coatings for chemical resistant and anti-corrosion applications, with a broad portfolio of patents to his support these technologies. His current research interests include the development of new, high performance materials for coating, composite and adhesive applications via a ‘safe-by-design’ and ‘recyclable-by-design’ approach, as well as developing responsive surfaces and polymers for functional coatings.

Dr Maria Katsikogianni is a Lecturer in Biomaterials Chemistry since September 2016. She joined the University of Bradford in 2014 as a Research and Knowledge Transfer Officer in the Centre of Advanced Material Engineering, following her post-doctoral training within WELMEC, the centre of excellence in Medical Engineering at the University of Leeds. Prior to joining the University of Leeds, she was a post-doctoral researcher at the Surface Engineering Group, University College Dublin.Maria completed her undergraduate studies in Chemistry (Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece) and gained her PhD in Biomedical Engineering, studying the effect of material surface chemistry, morphology and flow conditions on bacterial adhesion, under the supervision of Professor Yannis Missirlis (University of Patras, Greece).Her research profile lies at the interface of biomaterial science, life sciences and engineering. She is particularly interested in the biomimetic design of multifunctional materials for relevant clinical applications, e.g. in the context of fabricating and testing non-fouling/antimicrobial materials to prevent medical device associated bone infections, through the incorporation of antimicrobial agents and/or the surface patterning at the nanoscale.

Dr Paul Wilson is a Royal Society Tata University Research Fellow in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Warwick. He previously studied chemistry at the University of Bristol (MSci, 1st Class, 2006) before completing a PhD in organic chemistry (Warwick, 2010). After spending 18 months working in a spin out company working on reversible deactivation radical polymerisation and bioconjugation R&D, Paul returned to Warwick in late 2011 as a PDRA and then senior research fellow in the group of Prof Dave Haddleton. At the end of 2013, he took a senior research fellow (group leader) position in the group of Prof Tom Davis as part of the Monash – Warwick Alliance before being awarded a Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship in 2015. Paul has expertise in (macro)molecular synthesis, supramolecular chemistry (self-assembly), bioconjugation and surface modification, all of which feature prominently in his current research. His URF is focused on developing a platform for nanoscale synthesis and nanofabrication, through combining the capabilities of scanning electrochemical probe microscopy techniques with electrochemically-mediated organic, macromolecular and supramolecular chemistry to enable localised, spatially and temporally controlled chemical synthesis and modification at surfaces and interfaces.

Dr Samuel T. Jones is a Dame Kathleen Ollerenshaw Fellow within the Department of Materials at the University of Manchester. He completed his MChem (with professional experience) from the University of Warwick in 2009, followed by a PhD on supramolecular self-assembly of nanomaterials and polymers at the University of Cambridge with Prof. Oren A. Scherman. He then moved to the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) to work with Prof. Francesco Stellacci on broad-spectrum virucidal antiviral materials. His current research studies virus/material interactions towards developing novel antivirals, viral detections systems and virus stabilisers.

Dr Clare Mahon is an Assistant Professor in Organic Chemistry at Durham University. Clare was awarded her PhD at Newcastle University in 2014, where she worked with Dr David A. Fulton establishing new methods of ‘training’ synthetic polymers to recognise proteins and other macromolecules. She then spent two years at the University of Leeds on an EPSRC Doctoral Prize Fellowship, working with Prof. Bruce Turnbull to develop responsive synthetic polymers which interact with bacterial toxins. In 2017 she took up a Marie-Skłodowska Curie Global Fellowship, held at the University of Sydney, Australia, and the University of York, UK. During this time Clare worked with Dr Elizabeth J. New and Dr Markus Müllner-Bačvić, focussed on applying differential sensing approaches to the identification of carbohydrate-binding proteins. In October 2019, Clare moved to Durham in October 2019, where her work is focussed at the interface between materials science and biological chemistry.