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Fellows Directory

Douglas Stephan

Professor Douglas Stephan FRS


Elected: 2013


Douglas Stephan is a chemist whose uses fundamental studies to develop new methods for producing useful chemical products. He is best known for his work on frustrated Lewis pairs, which has enabled the development of metal-free methods of hydrogenation catalysis.

He has also devised new approaches for the activation of small molecules such as alkynes and olefins. Other highlights of Douglas’s work include research on compounds that contain both early and late transition elements, and studies of the chemistry of both zirconium–phosphorus complexes and catalytic phosphorus–phosphorus bonds.

Douglas has received numerous awards in recognition of his work, including the Humboldt Foundation Research Award in 2002 and the 2014 Chemical Institute of Canada Medal. In addition to being a Fellow of the Royal Society, he has also been elected to the membership of a number of other prestigious scientific organisations, including the Royal Society of Chemistry and the Royal Society of Canada.

Interests and expertise

Subject groups


Catalysis, CO2 chemistry, hydrogenations, main group chemistry, transition metal chemistry