Peter Schoenmakers appointed as scientific director of HIMS

22 December 2016

Starting 1 January 2017 professor Peter Schoenmakers will be the new scientific director of the University of Amsterdam's Van 't Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences (HIMS). He succeeds professor Joost Reek who will continue to be the coordinator of the UvA's research priority area Sustainable Chemistry.

The Van 't Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences focuses on chemistry research of both fundamental and applied nature. Led by Joost Reek the institute now has a workforce of approximately 135 staff members with a yearly output of around 200 peer reviewed publications, 20 PhD theses and 4 patents. Research is organized in 4 themes: Sustainable Chemistry, Analytical Chemistry, Computational Chemistry and Molecular Photonics.

Peter Schoenmakers already is responsible for the Analytical Chemistry research at HIMS. In this field he has established a track record of successful cooperation both within academia and with industry. As director of the institute he also wants to strive for a collaborative culture: "If we work together more closely, both within HIMS and within the FNWI, we can be more competitive outside the university."

New lines of research

Looking back at his period as director, Joost Reek is quite satisfied that five new tenure track staff members have been appointed as a result of national research funding and the establishment of the research priority area Sustainable Chemistry at UvA.

"It is good to see how these young researchers with their enthousiasm are starting up new lines of research", Reek says. "It is important to connect this new generation with our ongoing research, to be able to generate maximum synergy". In this respect the positive research attitude and working atmosphere within HIMS are of great importance, according to Reek. He is looking forward to be able to focus more on his own research now: "I'm going to wrap up my ERC research project and will start new lines of research myself."

prof. dr. ir. P.J. (Peter) Schoenmakers

Professor Peter Schoenmakers is UvA professor in analytical chemistry (including forensic applications) and is generally regarded as a prominent scientist in his field. Among many prizes he has received the Knox medal, the Csaba Horv├íth Memorial award as well as the 20th CASSS award. The Analytical Scientist magazine has ranked him seventh on its 'Power List' of most influential analytical chemists worldwide.

Schoenmakers leads several large national and European research projects and received an ERC Advanced Grant earlier this year. He had filed several patents of which two reached this year's final of the Amsterdam Science & Innovation Award.

Schoenmakers played a major role in the establishment of national public-private cooperation in analytical chemistry (TI-COAST), now one of the main funding bodies in Dutch research. He also leads the cooperation of the two Amsterdam universities in the Center for Analytical Science Amsterdam (CASA) which has received substantial national funding.

As Education Director of COAST Schoenmakers was able to strengthen the cooperation with industry with respect to education. In the Amsterdam Green Campus he further boosts multidisciplinary cooperation with companies and the regional universities for applied sciences.

Published by  HIMS