Primary research interest

Functional (organics & organometallics) materials design, synthesis and characterisation for organic opto-electronics

About me

I  have held a prestigious Swire Scholarship while carrying out my DPhil study on organic materials for solar cells and organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) at the University of Oxford, UK, (1996-2000). My post-doctoral research at Oxford University focused on the design, synthesis and characterisation of fluorescent and phosphorescent dendrimers (branched macromolecules) for OLEDs. I played a key role in electro-active dendrimers development so that light-emitting dendrimers have been recognised internationally as the third main class of OLED materials (alongside small molecules and pi-conjugated polymers). In December 2007, I joined the University as a Lecturer in Chemistry of Materials.

Research focus and collaborations

My research group focuses on functional materials development (from novel molecular design, synthesis and characterisation to advanced thermal/photophysical/electrochemical characterisations in device fabrication and analysis) using small molecules, oligomers, dendrimers and polymers for opto-electronics (e.g., next-generation light-emitting displays, solid-state lighting, lasers, organic solar cells, photodetectors and sensors, recent reviews: Chem. Rev. 2007, 107, 1097; Adv. Mater. 2007, 19, 1675), superconductors, health-care applications (e.g., cancer detection and therapy by multiphoton absorption: Nature Mater. 2005, 4, 435), and clean fuel generation (e.g., water splitting driven by sunlight; Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2009, 48, 2842). These projects are interdisciplinary with close collaboration with leading researchers within the School, University, Australia and overseas. 

Honours students (with potential DIISR Honours scholarships of $5000 based on academic merits) and PhD candidates who have excellent organic synthetic chemistry skills and experiences, and high interest in new materials development for organic opto-electronics should contact me ASAP.

Projects and patents

Funded projects

  • JSPS Core-to-Core Program: 2018-2023, Clarification of TADF Emission and Challenge for Novel Light-Emitting Materials
  • The Australia-India Strategic Research Fund Project: 2017-2020, Large Area Opto-Electronics for Australia and India
  • ARC Discovery Project: 2016-2019, Light Emitting Transistors: A New Route to Digital Displays and Lasers
  • ARC Discovery Project: 2014-2016, Molecular Alignment in Organic Semiconductors
  • ARC Discovery Project: 2012-2014, Fundamental Processes in Organic Photodetectors - Towards Next Generation Imaging and Sensing Systems
  • ARC Discovery Project: 2010-2012, Spin-Liquids, Antiferromagnetism, and Superconductivity in Organic Charge Transfer Salts, Synthesis, Neutron Scattering and Theory
  • ARC Linkage Infrastructure Equipment Facilities: 2011, High Pressure Facility for Optical Spectroscopy – Investigation of Novel Superconductors and Strongly Correlated Electron Systems
  • Australian Synchrotron Beamtime: 2011, 2012, XAS Water Splitting Investigation
  • Smart Futures National and International Research Alliances Program: 2009-2013, Organic Solar Cell Alliance (OSCA)
  • UQ Major Equipment and Infrastructure Funds: 2010, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2019
  • UQ Global Strategy and Partnerships Seed Fund: 2018


>60 patents globally on organic semiconductors and opto-electronics, and water-splitting technologies.

Teaching interests

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Advanced Organic Chemistry
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Materials Chemistry
  • Experimental Chemistry
  • Nanoscience
  • Introduction to Research

Achievements and awards

  • Progress 100 Visiting Professor (with Prof C. Adachi, Kyushu University, Japan)
  • Visiting Researcher (with Prof S. Tokito at ROEL, Yamagata University, Japan)
  • Visiting Academic (with Prof D. D. C. Bradley and Prof M. Moloney at Oxford University, UK)

Invited journal reviewer:

  • ACS Nano
  • Advanced Functional Materials
  • Advanced Optical Materials
  • Advanced Materials
  • Angewandte Chemie
  • Australian Journal of Chemistry
  • Chemistry-An Asian Journal
  • Chemistry-A European Journal
  • Journal of Luminescence
  • Journal of Materials Chemistry C
  • Journal of Organic Chemistry
  • Journal of The American Chemical Society
  • Macromolecules
  • Materials Chemistry & Physics
  • Nature Communications
  • Organic Electronics
  • Organic Letters
  • Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics
  • RSC Advances
  • Synthetic Metals
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • Tetrahedron
  • Tetrahedron Letters

Invited grant application reviewer

  • ARC Discovery Projects, Future Fellowships, Discovery Early Career Researcher Awards, & Linkage Schemes
  • The Innovation and Technology Commission of Hong Kong 
  • The Research Grants Council of Hong Kong

Featured publications

Researcher biography

Organic materials development (design, synthesis & characterisation) for opto-electronics

Dr Shih-Chun Lo


Lawrence held a prestigious Swire Scholarship while carrying out his PhD study on material development for organic solar cells and light emitting diodes (OLEDs) at the University of Oxford, UK, which he completed in 2000. His post-doctoral research at Oxford focused on the design, synthesis and characterisation of fluorescent and phosphorescent dendrimers for OLEDs. The dendrimers are now recognized internationally as the third main class of OLED materials, alongside small molecules and polymers. In December 2007, he joined the University of Queensland as a Lecturer in Chemistry of Materials. His work, based at the Centre for Organic Photonics and Electronics, (COPE, Level 9, Chemistry Building 68,;, is concentrating on the development of new functional materials for opto-electronics (solar cells, OLEDs, photodiodes, sensors, superconductors) and clean energy generation (water splitting).