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Personal profile

Research interests

My research focuses on the synthesis and development of new homogeneous catalysts. I use skills in synthetic main group chemistry to construct new ligands that include cooperative reaction sites to increase the potential for exciting new reactivity. Synthetic organometallic chemistry is exploited to form new transition metal and f-element catalysts for testing in challenging reactions such as dehydrocoupling and the catalytic functionalisation of dinitrogen.


Stephen started his undergraduate degree in 2001 at Imperial College London and graduated in 2005 working with Prof. Mike Hill for his MSci project on chiral ligands for enantioselective lanthanide catalysis, and winning the H.V.A. Briscoe prize for excellence in Inorganic Chemistry. In 2005 he moved to The University of Bristol and graduated in 2009 with a PhD under the joint supervision of Dr Chris Russell and Prof. Duncan Wass working on low valent and low coordination chemistry in the main group elements, with particular emphasis on developing new ligands for transition metals. He then undertook a one year post-doctoral position with Prof. Nick Norman researching boron-nitrogen analogues of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. In 2010 he moved to The University of Edinburgh undertaking research on small molecule activation using highly reactive uranium centres in the group of Prof. Polly Arnold. In 2013 he worked with Prof. Paul Raithby, Prof. Chick Wilson and Dr Andy Burrows at The University of Bath in a multi-disciplinary project on meta-stable functional materials before being appointed Lecturer at Heriot-Watt University in September 2013.

Key Research Words/Phrases

Homogeneous catalysis

Cooperative reactivity

Ligand design

Main group chemistry




  • QD Chemistry
  • Inorganic
  • Catalysis

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Stephen M. Mansell is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Ligands Chemical Compounds
Chelation Chemical Compounds
ethylenediamine Chemical Compounds
Amides Chemical Compounds
Uranium Chemical Compounds
Alkali Metals Chemical Compounds
Benzyl Compounds Chemical Compounds
Alkali metal compounds Chemical Compounds

Co Author Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2006 2019

Open Access
Epoxy Compounds
Carbon Dioxide
Open Access

Reversible temperature-induced polymorphic phase transitions of [Y(OAr)3] and [Ce(OAr)3] (Ar = 2,6-tBu2-4-MeC6H2): Interconversions between pyramidal and planar geometries

Haddow, M., Newland, R., Tegner, B. & Mansell, S. M., 20 Feb 2019, (Accepted/In press) In : CrystEngComm. 10.1039/C9CE00184K.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Synergic deprotonation generates alkali-metal salts of tethered fluorenide NHC ligands co-complexed to alkali metal amides

Evans, K. J. & Mansell, S. M., 12 Mar 2019, In : Chemistry - A European Journal. 25, 15, p. 3766-3769 4 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Alkali Metals
Alkali metals

Unexpected Multiple Coordination Modes in Silyl-Bridged Bis(phosphinine) Complexes

Cleaves, P. A. & Mansell, S. M., 8 Apr 2019, In : Organometallics. 38, 7, p. 1595−1605 11 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Carbon Monoxide


Activities 2015 2019

External examiner for a PhD thesis

Stephen M. Mansell (Examiner)
17 May 2019

Activity: ExaminationExternal Examiner

Royal Society of Chemistry (External organisation)

Stephen M. Mansell (Member)
11 Jan 2019

Activity: MembershipMembership of committee

External examiner for a PhD thesis

Stephen M. Mansell (Examiner)
25 Jan 2019

Activity: ExaminationExternal Examiner

External examiner for a PhD thesis

Stephen M. Mansell (Examiner)
9 May 2019

Activity: ExaminationExternal Examiner

Oral presentation at UK Catalysis Hub meeting

Stephen M. Mansell (Speaker)
18 Jun 2018

Activity: Talk or presentationOral presentation

Press / Media