Dr. Samy El-Shall is a Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). He received his B.S. and M.S. degrees from Cairo University, and a Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry with Distinction from Georgetown University. He did postdoctoral research in nucleation and clusters at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). His research interests are in the general areas of molecular clusters, nucleation phenomena, gas phase polymerization, nanostructured materials, graphene and nanocatalysis. His current research is focused on the development of new nanostructured catalysts and novel catalytic processes for energy and environmental applications. He has published over 200 refereed papers and review chapters, and he holds eight US patents on the synthesis of nanomaterials, nanoalloys, nanoparticle catalysts, graphene, and graphene-supported catalysts. Dr. El-Shall received the Exxon Education Award in 1994 and 1995; the Outstanding Faculty Award of the State Council of Higher Education of Virginia (SCHEV), Virginia's highest faculty honor in 1999; Jabir Ibn Hyyan Award from the Saudi Chemical Society for Advances in Nanomaterials & Nanotechnology in 2007; the Distinguished Research Award from the Virginia Section of the American Chemical Society in 2009; the Innovative Research Award from the Society of Automotive Engineering (SAE) in 2009; and the VCU Distinguished Scholarship Award in 2011. Dr. El-Shall served on the US National Committee for the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (USNC/IUPAC) and the Editorial Boards of the Journal of Physical Chemistry, the International Journal of Photoenergy, the Open Physical Chemistry Journal, Metals, and the Annual Review of Graphene. He was the Chair of the “International Conference on Nanoparticles” in Davos, Switzerland, 2004. He chaired three US–Egypt Workshops on “Advanced Materials, 2000”, Laser Chemistry and Applications to Materials, 2004”, and “Nanomaterials and Nanotechnology, 2005”. He also chaired the NSF Advanced Studies Institute (NSF-ASI) on “Nanocatalysis for Energy and Environmental Applications” in 2010. Dr. El-Shall’s research has been supported by the National Science Foundation, NASA, DoD, NIST, Petroleum Research Fund, Dreyfus Foundation, Jeffress Memorial Trust, Exxon, Dow Corning, Philip Morris, Afton Chemical, and private organizations.
Middle East Regional Cooperation (MERC) Program
Bureau for the Middle East
Samy El-Shall serves as a senior science advisor in the Bureau for the Middle East, Middle East Regional Cooperation (MERC) Program. The program promotes cooperation between Arab and Israeli technical communities through joint Arab-Israeli research projects to solve common development problems. Samy is focusing on enhancing and expanding joint Arab-Israeli research activities through rigorous peer-reviewed projects and building technical capacity in Arab countries by providing training and equipment through the MERC projects. He conducted site project reviews in Israel, Jordan and Egypt to improve collaborative research opportunities across borders and enhance implementation of research results. He is also working on creating new initiatives for young investigators in order to catalyze the next generation of Arab-Israeli research cooperation. This will contribute to development and improving the quality of life in the region, and is also expected to create long-term sustainable collaborations between Arab and Israeli scientists.