Zach Wickens

Position title: Assistant Professor of Chemistry


Phone: 608.890.4906

Room 6365A, Department of Chemistry
1101 University Avenue
Madison, WI 53706

Research Website
Wickens Group
Zach Wickens


  • B.A. 2010, Macalester College
  • Ph.D. 2015, California Institute of Technology
  • NIH Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard University, 2015-18



The primary focus of the Wickens group is the discovery and development of new catalytic principles to address longstanding challenges in organic synthesis. Our central hypothesis is that classically reactive species, such as radical and ionic intermediates, can be tamed and deployed as potent catalysts. Our recent efforts have focused on the electrochemical generation of new radical ion organocatalysts that exhibit extreme reactivity without sacrificing chemoselectivity. Additionally, these investigations have led us to explore how electrochemistry and photochemistry can be synergistically leveraged to enable otherwise infeasible reactions. Each of the projects we pursue balances mechanistically guided development of novel catalytic strategies with the introduction of useful new synthetic methodologies.