Prof. Howard Alper is Chair of Canada’s Science, Technology and Innovation Council. He is also Distinguished University Professor at the University of Ottawa. His research is in organic and inorganic chemistry, with potential applications in the pharmaceutical, petrochemical, and commodity chemical industries.
Prof. Howard Alper is currently spearheading the initiative by the Governor General of Canada (Head of State) to enhance global recognition for Canadian research excellence. He is Chair of the Canvassing Committee for the initiative. He is also Distinguished University Professor at the University of Ottawa. He is pursuing basic research that spans organic and inorganic chemistry, with potential applications in the pharmaceutical, petrochemical, and commodity chemical industries. He has discovered new reactions using homogeneous, phase transfer, and heterogeneous catalysis (e.g. clays, dendrimers). He has also used chiral ligands in metal catalyzed cycloaddition and carbonylation reactions, and succeeded in preparing valuable products in pharmacologically active form.
Alper has published over 544 papers, has thirty-seven patents, and has edited several books.
He has received a number of prestigious Fellowships including the E.W.R. Steacie (Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, 1980‑82), Guggenheim (1985‑86), and Killam (1986‑88) Fellowships. Major awards to Alper include the Alcan Award for Inorganic Chemistry (1986), Bader Award for Organic Chemistry (1990), Steacie Award for Chemistry (1993), all of the Canadian Society for Chemistry. The Chemical Institute of Canada has presented Alper with the Catalysis Award (1984), the Montreal Medal (2003), and the CIC Medal (1997), its highest honour. He also received the Urgel‑Archambault Prize (ACFAS) in physical sciences and engineering.