Prof. Raffaella Buonsanti


Dr. Raffaella Buonsanti is a Tenure Track Assistant Professor at the Institute of Chemical Sciences and Engineering (ISIC) of the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) since October 2015. She received her Master Degree in Chemistry from the University of Bari in 2006. In 2010, she graduated in Chemistry from the University of Salento working at the National Nanotechnology Laboratory (NNL, in Lecce-Italy). She continued her research as a postdoc at the Molecular Foundry, the Nanoscience Research Center at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL). After two years as a postdoctoral researcher, she was promoted to Project Scientist in the Molecular Foundry. Then, from 2013 to 2015, she was a tenure-track staff scientist at LBNL where she started her own research program within the Joint Center of Artificial Photosynthesis.

At EPFL, Professor Buonsanti implements a highly interdisciplinary approach, spanning from Chemistry to Materials Science and Chemical Engineering, to address fundamental challenges in energy technologies. Through the core expertise in colloidal synthesis, her team develops novel approaches to controlled and tunable nanomaterials to drive chemical transformations.

Past Positions

  • Tenure-Track Staff Scientists, The Joint Center of Artificial Photosynthesis, Materials Science Department, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, 2013-2015.
  • Project Scientists,  The Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, 2012-2013.
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, The Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, 2010-2012


  • Ph.D. in Nanochemistry, University of Salento, National Nanotechnology Laboratory, Italy 2010.
  • M.S. in Chemistry, University of Bari, Italy 2006.

Awards and Honors

  • Swiss Chemical Society Werner Price, 2021
  • Thieme Chemistry Journal Award, 2019
  • European Chemical Society Lecture Award, 2019
  • Royal Chemical Society ChemComm Emerging Investigator Lectureship, 2019
  • Endowed chair from the Sandoz Family Foundation, 2018
  • ERC Starting Grant, 2016.
  • SNSF Assistant Professor Energy Grant, 2016.
  • R&D 100 Award for Universal Smart Window Coating, 2013.
  • Outstanding Mentors Award from the Center for Science and Engineering Education at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, 2011.