Peter Cormack


Personal Statement

Peter Cormack was raised in Fankerton, a village located in the upper reaches of the Carron Valley in Stirlingshire, Scotland, and was schooled in nearby Denny. He graduated from the University of Strathclyde as BSc with First Class Honours in Chemistry in 1992, and gained undergraduate and postgraduate industrial research experience with Raychem Ltd. in Swindon, UK, working on high-performance, thermoplastic polymers. Electing to remain at Strathclyde to pursue his scientific interests further, he worked towards a PhD under the guidance of Professor David C. Sherrington and Dr Barry D. Moore, graduating in July 1996. His PhD work, sponsored by Merck Ltd. and the SERC, focussed upon the design and the synthesis of monodisperse liquid crystalline peptides and polymers.

In February 1996, Peter moved to the University of Cambridge to take up a position as Post-Doctoral Research Associate in the Melville Laboratory for Polymer Synthesis, working with Dr Joachim H.G. Steinke on the synthesis of hyperbranched polymers. He then moved to Lund University, Sweden, in March 1997, to work with Professor Klaus Mosbach in the area of molecularly imprinted polymers, initially as a Post-Doctoral Fellow within the Department of Pure & Applied Biochemistry (Tillämpad Biokemi) and latterly as Vice-Director of Research in the Center for Molecular Imprinting and Molecular Recognition.

In September 1998, Peter returned to the Department of Pure & Applied Chemistry at Strathclyde to take up a position as Lecturer in Polymer Chemistry, a position that was funded by ICI for the first three years. Subsequently, he was promoted to Senior Lecturer in Polymer Chemistry in April 2004, and was awarded the RSC/SCI Macro Group UK Young Researchers' Medal for 2005 in recognition of his contributions to polymer science and research potential. Thereafter, Peter was promoted to Reader in Polymer Chemistry in 2007 and to Professor of Polymer Chemistry in 2009. He was Scientist in Residence at the Centre for Self-Assembled Chemical Structures, Montréal, Canada in 2008, and has held Visiting Professorships in Canada (2008), Malaysia (2011) and Poland (2015). He was Deputy Head of the Department of Pure & Applied Chemistry from 2016-2017 and is now Head of Materials and Computational Chemistry. Since 2015, Peter is Associate Dean for International Research in the Faculty of Science at Strathclyde.

Peter’s research interests lie predominantly in the areas of synthetic polymer chemistry and materials science, with special emphasis on the design, the synthesis and the applications of functional organic polymers.

Please click on the Research tab for further details.

Research Interests

Within the Cormack Group at the University of Strathclyde, we are particularly interested in the synthesis and use of functional organic materials, especially materials based upon macromolecules, with a variety of end applications in mind (including high performance chemical separations, bioanalysis, environmental and forensic analysis, ion-exchange, metrology, films, coatings, proteomics and diagnostics). Typically, the materials are prepared using a broad-range of synthetic methodologies, including radical polymerisation, step-growth polymerisation, template-directed synthesis and solid-phase synthesis. The development and exploitation of molecularly imprinted polymers, microporous solids, functionalised polymer microspheres, branched polymers, and self-assembling systems are of special interest.

If you wish to join the Cormack Group as a postgraduate or postdoctoral researcher, and have your own external funding in place, then please contact Professor Cormack directly.

At the time of last updating of this section (22nd November 2017) there were no open vacancies.


    Research areas

  • Polymer chemistry, Materials science


  1. Industrial Case Account 2016 | Dargo, Stuart

    Project: Research Studentship Case - Internally allocatedResearch Studentship CASE (Internally Allocated)

  2. Polymer Supported Components for Lubricant Additives

    Project: Research - Studentship CaseResearch Studentship CASE

  3. Industrial Case Account 2016 / S160595-102

    Project: Research Studentship Case - Internally allocatedResearch Studentship CASE (Internally Allocated)

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Peter Cormack

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