Sir Fraser Stoddart Professor


Board of Trustees; Director of the Center for Chemistry of Integrated Systems

Research Statement

The academic career of Fraser Stoddart can be traced through thick and thin from the Athens of the North to the Windy City beside Lake Michigan with interludes on the edge of the Canadian Shield beside Lake Ontario, in the Socialist Republic of South Yorkshire, on the Plains of Cheshire beside the Wirral, in the Midlands of the Heartland of Albion, and in the City of the Angels beside the Peaceful Sea. He has been a member of the faculty at Northwestern University since 2008. He is a Board of Trustees Professor and Director of the Center for the Chemistry of Integrated Systems. His research interests are in chemistry beyond the molecule, which, combined with his interest in templation, has led to the template-directed synthesis, based on molecular recognition and self-assembly processes, of a wide range of mechanically interlocked molecules, bistable variants of which have found their way in the form of switches into molecular electronic devices and drug delivery systems. In terms of molecular structure, his research straddles the size regime from the mesomolecular scale all the way up to the nanoscopic, microscopic and macroscopic levels: it includes wholly synthetic polymers and metal-organic frameworks. He also embraces radical chemistry in both the supramolecular and mechanostereochemical domains.

Selected Publications

  • Juríček M, Strutt NL, Barnes JC, Butterfield AM, Dale EJ, Baldridge KK, Stoddart JF and Siegel JS, Induced-fit catalysis of corannulene bowl-to-bowl inversion Nature Chem. 6, 222–228 (2014).
  • Li H, Cheng C, McGonigal, PR, Fahrenbach AC, Frasconi M, Liu WG, Zhu Z, Zhao Y, Ke C, Lei J, Young RM, Dyar SM, Co DT, Yang YW, Botros YY, Goddard WA III, Wasielewski MR, Astumian RD and Stoddart JF, Relative unidirectional translation in an artificial molecular assembly fueled by light J. Am. Chem. Soc. 135, 18609–18620 (2013).
  • Schneebeli ST, Frasconi M, Liu Z, Wu Y, Gardner DM, Strutt NL, Cheng C, Carmieli R, Wasielewski MR and Stoddart JF, Electron sharing and anion–π recognition in molecular triangular prisms Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 52, 13100–13104 (2013).
  • Vermeulen NA, Karagiaridi O, Sarjeant AA, Stern CL, Hupp JT, Fahra OK and Stoddart JF, Aromatizing olefin metathesis by ligand isolation inside a metal-organic framework J. Am. Chem. Soc. 135, 14916–14919 (2013).
  • Liu Z, Frasconi M, Lei J, Brown ZJ, Zhu Z, Cao D, Iehl J, Liu G, Fahrenbach AC, Farha OK, Hupp JT, Mirkin CA, Botros YY and Stoddart JF, Selective isolation of gold facilitated by second-sphere coordination by α-cyclodextrin Nature Commun. 4, Article 1855 (2013).
  • Barnes JC, Fahrenbach AC, Cao D, Dyar SM, Frasconi M, Giesener MA, Benítez D, Tkatchouk E, Chernyashevskyy O, Shin WH, Stern CL, Sarjeant AA, Hartlieb KJ, Liu Z, Carmieli R, Botros YY, Choi JW, Slawin AMZ, Ketterson JB, Wasielewski MR, Goddard WA III and Stoddart JF, A radically configurable six-state compound Science 339, 429–433 (2013).
  • Barnes JC, Juríček M, Strutt NL, Frasconi M, Sampath S, Giesener MA, McGrier PL, Bruns CJ, Stern CL, Sarjeant AA and Stoddart JF, ExBox: A polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon scavenger J. Am. Chem. Soc. 135, 183–192 (2013).
  • Fahrenbach AC, Zhu Z, Cao D, Liu WG, Li H, Dey SK, Basu S, Trabolsi A, Botros YY, Goddard WA III and Stoddart JF, Radically enhanced molecular switches J. Am. Chem. Soc. 134, 16275–16288 (2012).
  • Tayi AS, Shveyd AK, Sue AC-H, Szarko JM, Rolczynski B, Cao D, Kennedy TJ, Sarjeant AA, Stern CL, Paxton WF, Wu W, Dey SK, Fahrenbach AC, Guest JR, Mohseni H, Chen LX, Wang KL, Stoddart JF and Stupp SI, Room temperature ferroelectricity in supramolecular networks of charge-transfer complexes Nature 488, 485–489 (2012).
  • Barnes JC, Fahrenbach AC, Dyar SM, Frasconi M, Giesener MA, Zhu Z, Liu Z, Hartlieb KJ, Carmieli R, Wasielewski MR and Stoddart JF, Mechanically induced intramolecular electron transfer in a mixed-valence molecular shuttle Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 109, 11446–11551 (2012).
  • Coskun A, Spruell JM, Barin G, Dichtel WR, Flood AH, Botros YY and Stoddart JF, High hopes: Can molecular electronics realise its potential? Chem. Soc. Rev. 41, 4827–4859 (2012).
  • Deng H, Grunder S, Cordova KE, Valente C, Furukawa H, Hmadeh M, Gándara F, Whalley AC, Liu Z, Asahina S, Kazumorio H, O’Keeffe M, Terasaki O, Stoddart JF and Yaghi OM, Large pore apertures in a series of metal–organic frameworks Science 336, 1018–1023 (2012).
  • Belowich ME, Valente C, Smaldone RA, Friedman DC, Thiel J, Cronin L and Stoddart JF, Positive cooperativity in the template-directed synthesis of monodisperse macromolecules J. Am. Chem. Soc. 134, 5243–5261 (2012).
  • Coskun A, Banaszak M, Astumian RD, Stoddart JF and Grzybowski BA, Great Expectations: Can artificial molecular machines deliver on their promise? Chem. Soc. Rev. 41, 19–30 (2012).


  • 2012 Fellowship of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, USA
  • 2011 Honorary Fellowship of the Royal Society of Chemistry, UK
  • 2010 Honorary Doctor of Science Degree (St Andrews University, UK)
  • 2010 Honorary Doctor of Science Degree (Trinity College Dublin, Ireland)
  • 2009 Honorary Doctor of Science Degree (University of Sheffield, UK)
  • 2008 Honorary Fellowship of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, UK
  • 2007 Appointed Knight Bachelor by HM Queen Elizabeth II
  • 2006 Honorary Doctor of Science Degree (University of Twente, The Netherlands)
  • 2005 Fellowship of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, USA
  • 2005 Honorary Doctor of Science Degree (University of Birmingham, UK)
  • 1999 Fellowship of the German Academy (Leopoldina) of Natural Sciences
  • 1994 Fellowship of the Royal Society of London, UK


  • 2012 Distinguished Citizen Award, Illinois Saint Andrew Society, Chicago, USA
  • 2010 Royal Medal of the Royal Society of Edinburgh presented by Duke of Edinburgh
  • 2008 Davy Medal of the Royal Society of London
  • 2008 Arthur C Cope Award (American Chemical Society)
  • 2007 Feynman Prize in Nanotechnology (Experimental)
  • 2007 Albert Einstein World Prize in Science
  • 2007 Tetrahedron Prize for Creativity in Organic Chemistry
  • 2007 King Faisal International Prize in Science
  • 2007 Jabir Ibn Hyyan (Geber) Medal (Saudi Chemical Society)
  • 2004 University of Edinburgh Alumnus of the Year 2005 Award
  • 2004 Nagoya Gold Medal in Organic Chemistry
  • 1999 Arthur C Cope Scholar Award (American Chemical Society)
  • 1993 International Izatt-Christensen Award in Macrocyclic Chemistry