Modern Synthetic Organic Reactions

Recent Developments and Industrial Opportunities

Date: To be confirmed, please contact us for more information

Location: Basel, Switzerland

Tutors: Dr Will Watson, Dr John Studley

Driven by the increasing complexity of synthetic targets and the need for efficient, selective and environmentally benign synthetic methods, the past decade has seen tremendous innovation and reaction understanding in the field of synthetic organic chemistry. However, much like the transition of a molecule from discovery to development, the transition and application of new synthetic methodology from a research setting to an industrially relevant context can be challenging. This course is designed to look in detail at essential new synthetic chemistry methodology and its potential application in addressing key challenges in industry. New processes will be presented with case studies and examples. In addition, an understanding of what it takes to transfer technology from an academic to a larger scale industrial context will be discussed.


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Course Outline

Course Overview:


  • Photoinduced electron transfer chemistry
  • Photoredox catalysts- synthesis, properties and tuning
  • Application and scale-up

C-H Functionalisation

  • Aromatic C-H functionalisation
  • Aliphatic C-H functionalisation
  • C-H coupling with halides and pseudohalides
  • C-H – C-H coupling

Hypervalent iodine                                                                                                          WW

  • Oxidation with hypervalent iodine reagents
  • Rearrangements mediated by hypervalent iodine reagents
  • C-C and C-X bond formation mediated by hypervalent reagents

Electrochemistry                                                                                                              JS

  • Synthetic organic electrochemistry
  • Electrochemical redox processes
  • Applications, setup and getting started

Hydrogen Mediated Reactions and Borrowing Hydrogen Chemistry

  • C-C and C-X bond formation via borrowing hydrogen
  • Using alcohols in place of halides and pseudohalides
  • Hydrogen mediated C-C bond formation (Krische chemistry)


  • Organocatalysis v’s transition metal processes
  • Catalyst classes and reaction examples
  • Asymmetric transformations

Biocatalysis                                                                                                                         WW

  • Recent developments in biocatalysis
  • Directed evolution of enzymes
  • “Non-natural” reactions catalysed by modified enzymes

Catalysis with Cheaper Metals                                                                                    JS

  • Green chemistry and sustainability
  • Base metals in cross coupling, hydrogenation and cyclization chemistry
  • New applications of base metals in industrial organic chemistry


Borylation and Organoboron Chemistry

  • Preparation of boronic acids and other boronate reagents
  • Rearrangements involving organoboron species (e.g. Matteson Reaction)

Case studies                                                                                                                       WW

  • Industrial examples involving the use of the chemistry discussed during the course

Benefits of Attending

  • A forward-looking review of how new technology and synthetic methods will shape the future of industrial organic synthesis.
  • A comprehensive overview of new synthetic methodology and its potential application in the synthesis of pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals and fine chemicals.
  • Gain a different perspective on solving synthetic challenges in your chemistry.
  • An appreciation of the factors that need to be considered in transferring new synthetic chemistry from an academic to an industrial setting.

Who Should Attend

  • Discovery/Synthetic organic chemists
  • Process development chemists
  • Anyone wishing to learn more about essential new synthetic chemistry methodology and its potential application in an industrial setting
  • Academics who wish to understand how industrial and process chemists view new synthetic chemistry and what can be done at the discovery stage to make the technology scalable.

What's Included

The course fee includes:

  • comprehensive course manual
  • coffee/tea refreshments breaks throughout each day
  • buffet lunch each day
  • course dinner on the first evening
  • course certificate