Dr Richard Bourne


Richard A Bourne is currently a Lecturer at the University of Leeds. He completed a PhD under the supervision of Prof. Martyn Poliakoff, CBE, FRS, followed by postdoctoral research with Prof. Martyn Poliakoff and Prof. Michael W. George looking at reactions of singlet oxygen as part of the EU FP7 SYNFLOW project. He is now an independent academic at the Institute of Process Research and Development (IPRD) at Leeds, working on rapid process development and continuous flow chemistry. His research group is particularly focussed on rapid optimisation of pharmaceutical processes using automated systems.



  • Member of Faculty of Engineering Research & Innovation Committee
  • IPRD/ Inorganic Chemistry Safety Lead
  • Dial-a-Molecule Steering Group Member

Research interests

Development of new sustainable processes with focus on continuous flow routes to pharmaceutical and fine chemical products. Our group is based within the Institute of Process Research and Development (IPRD) a joint institute between Chemical Engineering and Chemistry.

I am particularly interested in the use of automated flow systems combining online analysis, feedback control and evolutionary algorithms to provide process understanding and optimisation. This particularly interdisciplinary research at the interface between Chemistry and Chemical Engineering aims to develop processes at laboratory, pilot plant and manufacturing scales.

Research is supported by EPSRC Catalysis Hub, Dial-A-Molecule EPSRC Grand Challenge, Horizon 2020 Funding (ProPAT and IbD), AstraZeneca CASE PhD award, Royal Academy of Engineering.

Research groups and institutes

  • Complex Systems and Processes
  • Institute of Process Research and Development
  • Applied Photon Science
  • Industrial Biotechnology