Synthesis and Characterization of Catalytic Molecules


To enhance the capacity building and increase the contribution of research and higher education in Inorganic Chemistry at the University of Nairobi in order to address national, regional and global priority needs for social economic development and environmental health protection


International  Science Programme (ISP)

Principal Investigator
Prof Lydia W. Njenga

Globally only about1% of water is fit for human needs since the rest is saline or trapped in ice caps. Analysis of the available water shows that the blue water locked up in lakes and reservoirs and the green water (rainfall water) have become increasingly polluted. Kenya like many other developing countries is experiencing enormous environmental problems associated with chemical, biological and physical contaminants such as heavy metals, organic compounds, microorganisms and suspended matter. Some of these chemical pollutants are associated with endocrine disruption, neurological defects and carcinogenicity.

The role of basic sciences in solving these problems has not been adequately explored in Kenya. Although the Department of Chemistry at the University of Nairobi has been involved in teaching and research in basic sciences namely: Inorganic, Organic and Physical Chemistry for over 30 years, research in Inorganic Chemistry has not been fully established due to lack of equipment and technical infrastructure.

In this project, the research group seeks to strengthen research and training in Inorganic Chemistry concepts such as catalysis, sensors, nanochemistry and organometallics; develop synthesis and analytical capacity; and enhance collaboration with scientists in the North, in the South and regionally. Inorganic chemistry is central to chemistry solutions of the many challenges we face in the 21st century, e.g. sustainable energy and the use of renewable raw materials through catalysis. It is therefore essential for Kenya to be able to continue training students at a research level in inorganic chemistry. The proposed work will also target increased use of research results from supported activities through publication, scientific conferences and workshops, production of results relevant to development, and enhanced capacity and quality of research activities to attract research grants.

Project Code
Project Status