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Associate Investigators

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Dr Jack Chen

Dr Jack Chen

Associate Investigator

Functional Nanostructures

+64 9 921 9999, ext. 8398

Auckland University of Technology (AUT)
Private Bag 92006


Jack Chen is a Senior Lecturer in Chemistry at the Auckland University at Technology, teaching organic chemistry, molecular design and general chemistry. He conducted his PhD and a Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Auckland with Professor Margaret Brimble, working on the synthesis of spirastrellolide B - a potent protein phosphatase inhibitor with potential anti-cancer properties.

In 2011 he moved to Bristol, UK for 3 years where I worked on developing synthetic methodology involving a novel form of activated allylboron reagents. In 2014 he took up a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Padova, Italy, to study the use of gold nanoparticle-based supramolecular systems of chiral catalysts.

Research interests

Our group is interested in the way nanoparticles and molecules self-organise into functional architectures. We are currently introducing responsive elements into systems that allow them to respond to light, transmit signals and demonstrate adaptation.

Such systems offer exciting possibilities for the development of molecular machines, smart materials and molecular electronics.

In the current battle against climate change, chemists have an even greater responsibility to conduct chemistry with low environmental impact.

Dr Jack Chen

In the news

Annual Report

New Associate Investigators 2019 - Annual Report 2019

May 28, 2020

An overview of the research interests of each of our nine new Associate Investigators.

Read more about New Associate Investigators 2019 - Annual Report 2019

Annual Report

Funding successes - Annual Report 2019

May 26, 2020

Funding successes for our investigators and their research programmes during 2019. This funding enables our researchers and collaborators to continue their breakthrough research in advanced materials and nanotechnology.

Read more about Funding successes - Annual Report 2019

Annual Report

Researcher profiles - Annual Report 2019

May 25, 2020

Four of our researchers talk about their work and why they joined the MacDiarmid Institute.

Read more about Researcher profiles - Annual Report 2019