University Awards
Recognising Excellence

Young Researcher Award

To develop new routes to produce fuels and chemicals from renewable resources through catalyst and process design, so as to place the world on a more sustainable trajectory. Assoc Prof YAN Ning
PhD, BSc (Peking University)
Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
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  • Sustainable chemistry and engineering
  • Biomass conversion and renewable carbon resource utilisation
  • Advanced catalysis (metal catalyst at nano, subnano and single-atom scales)
  • One of three winners who received the annual ACS (American Chemical Society) Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering Lectureship Award 2018 for pioneering the "waste shell biorefinery" concept
  • First and only recipient from Asia to date to be recognised with the RSC (Royal Society of Chemistry) Environmental, Sustainability and Energy Early Career Award in 2017 for his innovative research on the valorisation of wastes through rational catalyst
  • Led an international team in developing a chemical synthesis route of various amino acids from sugars, paving the way for the production of high-value proteins from agricultural wastes via chemical routes in the future
  • Developed highly efficient single atom metal catalysts, addressing the high temperature stability issue of such catalysts that has long been a critical challenge in the field
  • Raised research grants of $2.55 million from the National Research Foundation, Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology, Ministry of Education, Agency for Science, Technology and Research, UNESCO and NUS, among others
  • Published more than 90 peer-reviewed papers and obtained over 3,000 total citations with a Hirsch index of 41
  • A series of his research articles on biomass conversion and catalyst development was highlighted in well-respected journals
  • Advisory board member of RSC Catalysis Science & Technology (since March 2018) and ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering (since January 2018)
  • Early Career board member of ACS Catalysis (January 2017 to December 2018)
  • Editorial board member and associate editor of Molecular Catalysis (Elsevier) (since September 2015 and October 2018, respectively)
  • Reviewer for several leading journals in multidisciplinary subjects and his research areas. Recognised as an “Outstanding Reviewer” for RSC Catalysis Science & Technology in 2016 and 2017
  • Chair/co-chair/organisation committee member of and plenary/keynote/invited speaker in several local and international conferences, symposiums and forums
  • Best Service Award, AIChE (American Institute of Chemical Engineers) Singapore Local Section (2016)
  • NUS Young Investigator Award (2015)
  • G2C2 Young Researcher Award, Global Green Chemistry Center (G2C2) (2015)
  • Hitachi Research Fellowship (2013)