Matthias Driess recieved his PhD 1988 at the Ruprecht-Karls University of Heidelberg. In addition he studied philosophy in Heidelberg. He worked as a postdoctoral fellow with Professor Robert West in Madison, U.S.A., before finishing his habilitation at the University of Heidelberg in 1993. From 1996-2004 he was appointed as full-professor for Inorganic Chemistry at the Ruhr University Bochum. Since 2004 he holds a chair for organometallic chemistry and inorganic material synthesis at the Department of Chemistry at the Technical University Berlin. In 2007 he became spokesperson of the Cluster of Excellence UniCat (, and most recently co-director of the UniCat-BASF joint lab BasCat at the campus of the TU Berlin and vice-chair of the Einstein Centre of Catalysis. He is a member of the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities and has published more than 340 scientific papers in peer-reviewed journals.

His research foci are (

• New functional groups in main-group chemistry, activation of unreactive bonds in small molecules with them, in particular based on silicon compounds (divalent species, stable silanones, silicon(0) complexes)
• Electron-rich silicon-based steering ligands for transition-metal mediated homogeneous catalysis
• Activation of small molecules (e.g., dihydrogen, dioxygen, ammonia and alkanes) through bioinspired transition-metal complexes, including model complexes of copper-, nickel- and iron-based oxygenases.
• Metalorganic single-source precursors for the low-temperature synthesis of nanoscaled functional materials for energy-saving key technologies like catalysis (materials for solar and electrocatalytic water splitting) an for optoelectronics, including präorganized synthesis of multinary basis materials Basismaterialien for energy-saving thin-film field effect transistors
• Molecular models for heterogeneous catalysts (e.g., metal oxide-based selective oxygenation of hydrocarbons)

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