Fraser & Norma Stoddart Prize 2022

Photovoltaic research and public engagement work recognised in annual student prize

It is a great honour and surprise for me to be selected for this year’s Fraser & Norma Stoddart Prize. I would like to take this opportunity to thank my supervisor Prof Neil Robertson, public engagement coordinator Dr Jenny Bos, Dr Anna-Maria Maciejuk, as well as my colleagues, collaborators, friends and family who have each played a considerable role in this achievement. I would also like to acknowledge JASSO, the School of Chemistry and other funding organisations for their financial support during my time in Edinburgh.

The overall theme of my PhD project was the development of post-generation photovoltaics, specifically dye-sensitised solar cells and perovskite solar cells. For further information, please read Year of the Periodic Table and  The Solar Spark

Knowing the city and its people through public engagement was also an invaluable experience. Together with Dr Nikola Zotev, we organised a number of activities for Science Festivals in Scotland.

Since graduation, I have moved back to Japan to take up a researcher position in Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation. With a fresh start in industry, the research and public engagement skills that I gained in Edinburgh have supported me in many ways to push through the challenges that arise from time to time. The award will always remind me to enjoy life and take big steps.


I am delighted to announce that this year’s recipient of the Fraser and Norma Stoddart PhD Prize is Ellie Tanaka, who did her PhD with Prof. Neil Robertson. Well done Ellie, and congratulations for your impressive achievements during your PhD!

Every year the decision on the Fraser and Norma Stoddart prize is made by a panel consisting of post-doctoral researchers/early career researchers, one from each section. I want to thank Dr. Ben Bhawal, Dr. Ilka Schmueser and Dr. Alvaro Etcheverry Berrios for being on the panel this year and assessing the applications.


Ellie was an outstanding research student, and showed great originality alongside her undoubted dedication and practical ability. As well as her research, she was also committed to public engagement and to creating a welcoming and supportive environment for all students. She has always been an excellent ambassador for the School of Chemistry and I’m sure she will now thrive in the job she secured with Mitsubishi Chemicals.


More Information

Stoddart Prize winners are expected not only to have demonstrated superior research accomplishments throughout their time at Edinburgh but they should also have contributed to the life of students within the School of Chemistry and beyond.