Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 93106, USA
Bruce Lipshutz began his academic career at the University of California, Santa Barbara, USA, in 1979, where today he continues as a Distinguished Professor of Chemistry. His programme in synthesis focuses on new reagents and methodologies, mainly in the area of organometallic chemistry. While these contributions tended to fall within the area of ‘traditional’ organic synthesis, more recently his group has shifted in large measure towards the development of new technologies in green chemistry, with the specific goal being to get organic solvents out of organic reactions. To accomplish this, the Lipshutz group has introduced the concept of ‘designer’ surfactants that enable key transition metal-catalysed cross-couplings, and many other reactions, to be carried out in water at room temperature. Most recently, his group has turned its attention to developing new catalysts for key Pd- and Au-catalysed reactions that enable C–C bond formation at the parts per million level of the metal, each catalyst being utilised in water under very mild conditions. The potential for his group’s work in this field to significantly influence, and possibly transform the way in which organic chemistry is performed in the future, led to a Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award in 2011, and more recently, the ACS GCI Peter J. Dunn Award.