Arjan W. Kleij

Arjan W. Kleij

Institut Català d'Investigació Química

Experimental Sciences & Mathematics

MSc (with honors) and PhD (Cum Laude) from the University of Utrecht (Netherlands). In 2002 he moved to Spain as a NWO TALENT fellow with Javier de Mendoza, followed by another postdoc appointment at the University of Amsterdam (The Netherlands) working with Joost Reek. He also held various scientific positions in the industry working as a project leader (Avantium) and senior research scientist (Hexion). In 2006, he returned to Spain as an ICREA Researcher and ICIQ Group Leader, and was promoted to ICREA Research Professor in 2011. He is current member of several advisory (ChemCatChem, Journal of CO2 Utilization, ASC Sust Chem Engin) and editorial boards (ChemSusChem, Molecules). Guest editorships for Catal. Sci. & Technol., ChemSusChem and Adv. Synth. Catal.; chairman of the CDCC conference in Portugal in 2016 & 2020, chair of the EUGSC-4 conference in 2019; Associate Editor for Organic Chemistry Frontiers. Citations >10700, h-index of around 62.

Research interests

The research of my group focuses on the valorization of small molecules (including CO2) into value-added chemicals and materials. We design new and more sustainable catalytic methods for their conversion and use in organic synthesis. We use homogeneous catalysis approaches based on metal complexes and/or organocatalysts, and investigate important process features such as catalyst recycling, energy/material efficiencies and overall selectivity/reactivity profiles. In all these endeavors, we wish to solve challenging stereoselective and enantioselective transformations including those focusing on the preparation of compounds featuring challenging quaternary stereocenters.

Selected publications

- Della Monica, Francesco; Kleij, Arjan W., 'Mechanistic guidelines in nonreductive conversion of CO2: the case of cyclic carbonates', Catal. Sci. Technol. 2020, 10, 3483-3501.

- Della Monica, Francesco; Kleij, Arjan W. 'From terpenes to sustainable and functional polymers', Polym. Chem. 2020, 11, 5109-5127.

- Qiao, Chang; Villar-Yanez, Alba; Sprachmann, Josefine; Limburg, Bart; Bo, Carles; Kleij, Arjan W., 'Organocatalytic Trapping of Elusive Carbon Dioxide Based Heterocycles by a Kinetically Controlled Cascade Process', Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2020, 59, 18446-18451.

- Xie, Jianing; Li, Xuetong; Kleij, Arjan W., 'Pd-catalyzed stereoselective tandem ring-opening amination/cyclization of vinyl gamma-lactones: access to caprolactam diversity', Chem. Sci. 2020, 11, 33, 8839-8845.

- Limburg, Bart; Cristofol, Alex; Della Monica, Francesco; Kleij, Arjan W., 'Unlocking the Potential of Substrate-Directed CO2 Activation and Conversion: Pushing the Boundaries of Catalytic Cyclic Carbonate and Carbamate Formation', ChemSusChem 2020, 13, 6056-6065.

- Dechent, Sarah-Elisabeth; Kleij, Arjan W.; Luinstra, Gerrit A., 'Fully bio-derived CO2 polymers for non-isocyanate based polyurethane synthesis', Green Chem. 2020, 22, 969-978.

Selected research activities

Associate Editor for Organic Chemistry Frontiers (RSC); Editorial board member for ChemSusChem (Wiley), Journal of CO2 Utilization (Elsevier) and Molecules (MDPI); 2020 RSEQ Research Excellence award; 2020-2023 visiting Professor Dalian - China; Global Scientific advisor for Henkel; invited lectures at the GSC-5 conference (Dresden), plenary at the 1st Young Chemists Summit Austria, KAUST and the University of Muenster/BASF Coatings.