7 November 2023

Automated Intelligent Chemistry

Organised by:

SCI’s Young Chemists’ Panel 

SCI, London, UK

Registration Closed

This event is no longer available for registration.


Automated chemistry continues to receive increasing attention as a wide-ranging field with applications across academic and industrial research programmes. As this field develops through the availability of ever more advanced solid and liquid handling robotics, automated flow chemistry, reaction monitoring and purification, it continues to enable more complex experimentation and discoveries. When the practical ability to perform automated handling and analytical techniques is combined with algorithms to perform data analysis and experiment design, this technique becomes all the more powerful.

This symposium looks to bring together leading academic and industrial researchers from across the field – from high-throughput experimentation to the development of new algorithms. Please join us for an exciting day of automated intelligent chemistry!


This meeting is relevant to delegates from both industry and academics/students at all levels, who are interested in developing or using automation within organic and medicinal chemistry:

  • Automation chemists, high-throughput experimentation chemists.
  • Chemists in pharmaceutical/agrochemical industries, who either use automation themselves, or work alongside those that do.
  • Relevant to PhD students and postdocs who are either currently using automation in their work, would like to use it in the future, or intend on moving into the pharmaceutical/agrochemical industries.
  • Chemists interested in artificial intelligence and cheminformatics and its application to synthesis.


For further information and prices, please email conferences@soci.org.


Kevin Lam

University of Greenwich

Prof. Kevin Lam received his Ph.D. in Medicinal and Synthetic Organic Chemistry from the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium. His doctoral work explored the use of electrochemistry and photochemistry as green alternatives to activate organic molecules. This work resulted in the development of a new radical-based deoxygenation reaction (the Lam-Marko reaction).
After his Ph.D., he moved to the University of Vermont (UVM). His research focused on applying analytical/physical electrochemistry alongside spectroscopy to study the complex redox behaviour of organometallic compounds.
Kevin now a Reader (Associate Professor) in Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Greenwich in the U.K. where he continues his interdisciplinary research in the field of synthetic and molecular electrochemistry.

Marwin Segler

Microsoft Research AI4Science

Marwin Segler is a team lead at Microsoft Research AI4Science, working at the intersection of chemistry, drug discovery, and machine learning. Prior, he was Lead Researcher at BenevolentAI (London), and received his PhD in chemistry from the University of Muenster.
Marwin pioneered modern machine learning for molecular design, and chemical synthesis planning. His research interests are in computer-assisted scientific discovery, algorithm development in computational chemistry and AI, and applications in organic synthesis and drug discovery.

Nessa Carson


Nessa Carson received her MChem degree from Oxford University, before completing an MS in catalysis and organic methodology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She started in industry as a synthetic chemist for AMRI, then moved within the company to run the high-throughput automation facility on behalf of Eli Lilly in Windlesham, working across both the discovery and process chemistry arenas. She then worked in reaction optimization and data management using automation at Pfizer and then Syngenta.
Nessa recently moved to AstraZeneca as Digital Champion in Early Chemical Development, where she focusses on making life easier for chemists and analysts with data management and digital upskilling. She was recently awarded the Salters' Institute Centenary Award for early-career chemists with the potential to make an outstanding long-term contribution to the chemical industry.

Rachel Grainger

Astex Pharmaceuticals (UK)

Rachel obtained her MChem from University of Bath in 2010, and her PhD on transition metal catalysis with Prof. Igor Larrosa (Queen Mary, University of London) in 2014. Following a postdoctoral position with Prof. Matthew Gaunt (University of Cambridge), she joined Astex Pharmaceuticals’ Sustaining Innovation Postdoctoral program where she established automated synthesis capabilities (HTE and flow) within the company. Currently Rachel is an Associate Director at Astex Pharmaceuticals (UK) and leads Astex’s Synthesis Technology Group which helps to enable synthetic challenges on live drug discovery projects using robotic-enabled high-throughput experimentation (HTE) and modern synthetic techniques like photoredox and flow chemistry.

Richard Bourne

University of Leeds

RAEng Research Chair, Professor of Digital Chemical Manufacturing at University of Leeds. As a Research Chair of the Royal Academy of Engineering I am currently focusing on the development of digital technologies for rapid discovery and development of pharmaceuticals. I am interested in the 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).


Tuesday 7 November 2023

Registration and refreshments
Opening remarks
Your chemistry has got potential: highly reactive intermediates without the bang
Prof Kevin Lam, University of Greenwich
Refreshment break and exhibition
Enabling synthesis in fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) with automated intelligent chemistry
Dr Rachel Grainger, Astex Pharmaceuticals
Lunch and exhibition
Machine learning to accelerate design-make-test cycles
Marwin Segler, Microsoft
Championing “digital” at AstraZeneca
Nessa Carson, AstraZeneca
Refreshment break and exhibition
Industry 4.0: Self-optimising reactors for accelerated process development
Prof Richard Bourne, University of Leeds
Closing remarks
Networking reception
Event close

SCI’s Young Chemists’ Panel are committed to promoting diversity and equality in the chemical sciences. We aim to identify high quality speakers for all our conferences with inclusivity of gender and ethnicity. Attendees from all backgrounds and ages are welcome.
Venue and Contact


14/15 Belgrave Square

Conference Team

Tel: +44 (0)20 7598 1561

Email: conferences@soci.org

Before early bird - ends 26 September 2023
SCI Member - £90
Non-member - £120
SCI Student member - £40

After early bird

SCI Member - £140
Non-member - £170
SCI Student member - £90

Become an SCI Member and save on this and future events

See Membership Options

Sign up as an Event Member to join this event. SCI Full or Student Members receive discounts on event registrations

Booking Process/Deadlines

Booking terms and conditions

CPD Info

SCI Members attending this meeting are able to claim CPD points.

Accredited cpd Centre - The CPD Standards Office - CPD Provider 41057 - www.cpdstandards.com



Organising Committee
    • Sean Guggiari, SCI / Quotient Sciences
    • Rhian Holvey, SCI/ Astex Pharmaceuticals
    • Joseph Howard, SCI/ Bio-Techne
    • Ricardo Labes, SCI/ Syngenta
    • Hollie McCarron, SCI / Cancer Research