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Personal profile


I received my training as a synthetic organic chemist as a Ph.D. student at Manchester University (supervisor, Professor J K Sutherland) where I synthesised a variety of natural product analogues.  Subsequently, as a postdoctoral associate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1992-1994, PI Professor J Rebek Jr) I gained invaluable early experience of combinatorial chemistry through the synthesis and subsequent deconvolution of soluble combinatorial libraries. After a year spent at Warwick University as a temporary lecturer and a three-year period spent as a lecturer at the Nottingham Trent University, I moved to Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry (CEAC), within the School of Engineering and Applied Science (EAS) at Aston University, in October 1998. In addition to teaching and research reposonsibilities, I am the EAS Director of Research Degrees and the CEAC Placement tutor.

Research Interests

My research interests focus on using synthetic organic chemistry as a tool with which to develop new compounds and materials. A prinicpal focus is on the generation of bespoke monomers which are designed and synthesised before being introduced into polymerisation reactions to generate materials with properties tailored for disparate applications in fields ranging from cellular delivery and bioimaging to molecular recognition, combinatorial chemistry and high-throughput screening.

Teaching Activity

My teaching activities reflect my research interests and are largely organic chemistry-based.  I teach on both the Chemistry and Chemical Engineering programmes offered by the School. I give lectures in the following modules; CH1102 Organic Chemistry 1, CE1012 Chemistry for Engineers, CH1104 Molecular Transformations, CH2101 Chemical Analysis, CH2102 Organic Chemistry 2, CH3103 Organic Chemistry 3. As part of the above module load, I run the Year 1 Introductory Chemistry Laboratory classes and the Organic Chemistry Laboratory classes and give a number of support tutorials in addition to my lectures. I am responsible for organising the Year 3 Literature Research Projects (CH3117) and I run the CEAC Placement Year.


  • 2015 – date Reader, Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry, Aston University
  • 2008 – 2015 Senior Lecture, Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry, Aston University
  • 1998 – 2008 Lecturer Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry, Aston University
  • 1995-1998 Lecturer, Department of Chemistry & Physics, Nottingham Trent University
  • 1994 – 1995 Temporary Lecturer, Department of Chemistry, Warwick University
  • 1992-1994 Postdoctoral Research Associate, Department of Chemistry, MIT, USA


  • BSc (Hons) Chemistry, Manchester University, 1989
  • MSc in Synthetic Organic Chemistry, Manchester University, 1990
  • PhD in Synthetic Organic Chemistry, Manchester University, 1992

Contact Details

Phone number: 0121 204 3425
Email: a.j.sutherland@aston.ac.uk
Room number: MB132


  • QD Chemistry
  • organic chemistry
  • polymer chemistry


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