Stephen Liddle

Stephen Liddle


Personal profile



CHEM20312 Inorganic Chemistry: 2nd year organometallic chemistry course leader.

CHEM30620 MChem Group Projects: 3rd year mini-project academic supervisor.


Steve Liddle is Professor and Head of Inorganic Chemistry and co-Director of the Centre for Radiochemistry Research at The University of Manchester. He was born in Sunderland in the North East of England and obtained his BSc (Hons) in 1997 and PhD (Prof. W. Clegg) in 2000 from Newcastle University. After postdoctoral fellowships at Edinburgh University (Dr P. Bailey), Newcastle University (Dr K. Izod) as the Wilfred Hall Research Fellow, and Nottingham University (Prof. P. Arnold) he was appointed to a fixed-term Lectureship at Nottingham University in 2007. He subsequently took up a Royal Society University Research Fellowship (2007-2015) with a proleptic Lectureship, and he was promoted to Associate Professor and Reader in 2010 and Professor of Inorganic Chemistry in 2013. He moved to The University of Manchester in 2015. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry in 2011, Vice President to the Executive Committee of the European Rare Earth and Actinide Society (2012-now), and Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2022. He was Chairman of COST Action CM1006, a 22 country 120 research group network for f-block chemistry (2011-2015), and he is a National Co-ordinating Centre for Public Engagement Ambassador and advisor to the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission. He was one of the Periodic Videos team awarded the IChemE Petronas award for excellence in education and training in 2008. He was awarded the RSC Sir Edward Frankland Fellowship and the RSC Radiochemistry Group Bill Newton Awards in 2011, a Rising Star Award at the 41st International Conference on Coordination Chemistry in 2014, the RSC Corday-Morgan prize in 2015, an Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Research Award in 2019, and the RSC Tilden Prize in 2020. In 2021 he was one of the team awarded an inaugural RSC Dalton Division Horizon Prize. He was awarded a European Research Council (ERC) Starter Grant in 2009 and a ERC Consolidator Grant in 2014. He held an EPSRC Established Career Fellowship (2015-2021). He has published over 230 research articles, reviews, and book chapters.

Research interests

The Liddle group's research interests span a wide range of coordination and organometallic chemistry across the periodic table, with a particular emphasis on the chemistry of lanthanide (we include group 3 elements in this definition) and actinide (principally uranium and thorium but also neptunium and plutonium) complexes that challenge preconceived ideas. Specific topics which are currently under investigation include:

URANIUM-LIGAND MULTIPLE BONDING - Developing synthetic routes and approaches to constructing novel uranium-ligand multiple bonding interactions.

SINGLE MOLECULE MAGNETS - Probing the dynamic magnetism properties of designed complexes.

SMALL MOLECULE ACTIVATION - Harnessing the extraordinary polarising and electron transfer chemistry of f-block elements to convert small molecules into value-added compounds.

URANIUM-METAL(LOIDAL) BONDS - Developing routes to novel uranium-metal bonding interactions.

The over-arching aim of these projects is to develop a thorough and complete understanding of the electronic structure of f-block complexes and to establish and understand structure-bonding-reactivity/-magnetism relationships. To do this we make, measure, and calculate using a broad range of synthetic, spectroscopic, magnetic, and computational approaches. 

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Energy
  • Dalton Nuclear Institute


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