Group Leader

Dr Silvia Díez-GonzálezDr. Silvia Díez-González 

Dr. Silvia Díez-González received her MSci in organic chemistry from the Universidad del País Vasco (Spain)and the Université Paris XI (France) in 2000 and her Ph.D. on organosilicon chemistry from the Université Paris XI .

Silvia first joined the Department of Chemistry at Imperial as part of the first promotion of Imperial College Junior Research Fellows, where she is currently an Imperial College Lecturer in Catalysis.

For more information, visit Silvia's website

Postgraduate students

Benjamin ZELENAY, 4th Year PGBenjamin ZELENAY, 4th Year PG

Benjamin is from Zürich, Switzerland, where he graduated with an MSc in chemistry from the ETH in 2012. His master thesis was focused on the synthesis and characterisation of 2D polymers by complexation of terpyridine and bipyridine substituted benzenes at the air-water interface under the supervision of Prof. A. D. Schlüter. Thereafter he did an internship at CSIRO in the group of Dr. San Thang based on the work of cationic drug delivery polymers until he started his PhD. His PhD project is focused on selective hydroamination reactions with copper(I) complexes.

Besides chemistry, Benjamin likes to read books, do photography and is often spotted in the gym.

Ethan RICHARDS, 3rd Year PGEthan RICHARDS, 3rd Year PG

Ethan is from Southampton and graduated from the University of Birmingham with an MSci in Chemistry. In his third year he completed a 12 month placement at GlaxoSmithKline working in medicinal chemistry and during his final year Ethan’s MSci project was to investigate the synthesis of “drug-like” azetidines, under the supervision of Dr John Fossey. Ethan started his PhD in October 2014, under the joint supervision of Dr James Bull and Dr Silvia Díez-González, to investigate well-defined copper-catalysts for N-arylation reactions.

Outside of the lab Ethan enjoys attending music concerts and festivals, supporting Southampton football club, running and fencing.

Filip SEBEST, 3rd Year PhDFilip SEBEST, 3rd Year PhD

Filip is from Bratislava, Slovakia and and he completed his undergraduate degree at Imperial College. His MSci project involved studies towards a novel total synthesis of pseudopterosin natural products, under the supervision of Prof Donald Craig. He started his PhD in October 2014 and his current research is based on copper-catalysed cycloadditions with alkenes.

Outside of chemistry, Filip likes travelling around Europe, watching TV and playing sports and board games.


Lalita is from Thailand. She completed her undergraduate degree in chemistry from Chulalongkorn University and her MRes degree in Catalysis at Imperial College London. Her master project was based on copper(I)-NHC complexes for the Goldberg coupling, under supervision of Dr. Silvia Díez-González and Dr. James Bull. Lalita started her PhD in June 2016, with a particular focus on copper(I)-catalysed direct nucleophilic substitution of propargylic alcohols.

Outside of chemistry, Lalita enjoys cycling, cooking, listening to music and travelling, and loves Korean series and songs.

DavidDavid Ventura, Visiting PG

David Ventura was born and raised in Castellón (Spain). He obtained his B.S. degree in chemistry in 2014 from the Universitat Jaume I. Now he is developing his PhD project under the supervision of J. A. Mata. His research interests focus on development of new catalytically activeorganometallic complexes that allow immobilisation onto graphene surfaces and the study of catalytic applications in de-hydrogenation processes

Janet PEET, MRes in CatalysisJanet PEET, MRes in Catalysis

Janet is from London and graduated with a BSc in Chemistry in 2016 from Imperial College London. She is currently completing a MRes in Catalysis and her current research focuses on  the application of copper(I)-catalysed Click chemistry to bio-relevant triazoles.

In her spare time, Janet enjoys travelling, going to the gym, yoga and playing kabaddi competitively.

Dilruba Afrose Popy, MRes in CatalysisDilruba Afrose Popy, MRes in Catalysis

Dilruba is from Bangladesh., where she completed her B.Sc (Hons.) and MSc in chemistry from Jahangirnagar University. Her Master thesis focused on natural products chemistry within the research group of Prof. Koushik Saha. Under the supervision of Prof. Mimi Hii and Dr. Silvia Díez-González, she is currently  exploreing the reactivity of novel Group 11-NHC complexes in the formation of diverse heterocycles. 

Besides chemistry, Dilruba enjoys tasty food, travelling and learning about history and science.

Wendy Dian LIN, MRes in Green ChemistryWendy Dian LIN, MRes in Green Chemistry

Wendy's MRes project is to develop highly efficient copper-catalyzed sulfur arylation reactions, under the joint supervision of Dr James Bull and Dr Silvia Díez-González.

Outside chemistry, Wendy likes listening to k-pop music and enjoys baking and travelling.

MSci/BSci students

Shuang HE, MSciShuang HE, MSci

Shuang is currently in her 4th year study of MSci chemistry at Imperial College London. Her MSci project investigates into the azide reduction using novel copper (I) complexes, focusing on both the aryl and the heterocyclic azides.

Outside chemistry, Shuang enjoys travelling as well as attending musicals and photography exhibitions.


Kushal is from London and is currently in his final year of an MSci in Chemistry. His interest in catalysis has led him to complete a project which involves the investigation of unprecedented 1,3-dipolar cycloadditions in novel reaction media.    

Outside of chemistry, Kushal plays tennis competitively, enjoys playing the guitar and travelling.

Wan CHAU, BSciWan CHAU, BSci

Wan Ting is from Malaysia and her interest in cosmetic science has bring her to Imperial College London to study chemistry. Her current Bsc project focused on the catalytic conversion of different oximes into nitrile or amide derivatives using palladium(II) catalysts.

In her spare time, she loves travelling around the world, reading and shopping.


Dr Sarah Gates
Nov 2012 - July 2016

Current position: Policy Adviser at Government Digital Service

Dr John M. Collinson

Dr John M. Collinson
Oct 2010 - August 2014

Current position: Innovation Chemist at Johnson Matthey

Dr Steven Lal

Dr Steven Lal
Nov 2009 - July 2013

Current position: Scientist at ATDBio