Dr Annie Colebatch

Rita Cornforth Fellow
Research School of Chemistry

Annie completed her undergraduate degree and PhD at the Australian National University. She received an Endeavour Research Fellowship to work at the University of Bath (2015), followed by postdoctoral appointments at the University of Oxford (2015-2017) and the University of Cambridge (2017-2019). She returned to the ANU in 2019 as a Rita Cornforth Fellow to establish her independent research on the design of transition metal catalysts.

Research interests

Our research interests span inorganic chemistry, synthesis, catalysis, supramolecular chemistry and electrochemistry. The main focus across these areas is looking at the way multiple chemical entities can "cooperate" to achieve a particular chemical outcome and designing systems capable of utilising these cooperative effects. Our team are developing bimetallic complexes and investigating the interplay of the two metals on the chemical and catalytic reactivity as well as physical properties such as electrochemical and photochemical properties. A key focus of the group's work is ligand design to support such systems where multiple metal centres can bind and interact. The long term aim of our work is to develop catalysts to address challenges in sustainability.


  • Stevens, M & Colebatch, A 2022, 'Cooperative approaches in catalytic hydrogenation and dehydrogenation', Chemical Society Reviews, vol. 51, no. 6, pp. 1881-1898.
  • Delaney, A, Yu, L, Coote, M et al. 2021, 'Synthesis of an expanded pincer ligand and its bimetallic coinage metal complexes', Dalton Transactions, vol. 50, no. 34, pp. 11909-11917.
  • Garcia-Romero, A, Martin-Alvarez, J, Colebatch, A et al. 2021, 'Synthesis of tris(3-pyridyl)aluminate ligand and its unexpected stability against hydrolysis: revealing cooperativity effects in heterobimetallic pyridyl aluminates', Dalton Transactions, vol. 50, no. 37, pp. 13059-13065.
  • Waters, J, Hanf, S, Rincan-Nocito, M et al. 2021, 'Synthesis and coordination behaviour of aluminate-based quinolyl ligands', Dalton Transactions, vol. 50, no. 41, pp. 14551-14559.
  • Hanf, S, Colebatch, A, Stehr, P et al. 2020, 'An experimental and theoretical study of the coordination and donor properties of tris-2-pyridyl-phosphine ligands', Dalton Transactions, vol. 49, no. 16, pp. 5312-5322.
  • Colebatch, A, Frogley, B, Hill, A et al. 2020, 'Pnictogen-Functionalised C1 Ligands: MC-ARn (n=0, 1, 2, 3)', Chemistry, A European Journal, vol. 27, pp. 23pp.
  • Spearing-Ewyn, E, Beattie, N, Colebatch, A et al 2019, 'The role of neutral Rh(PONOP)H, free NMe2H, boronium and ammonium salts in the dehydrocoupling of dimethylamine-borane using the cationic pincer [Rh(PONOP)(η2-H2)]+ catalyst', Dalton Transactions, vol. 48, no. 39, pp. 14724-14736.
  • Colebatch, A & Weller, A 2019, 'Amine-Borane Dehydropolymerization: Challenges and Opportunities', Chemistry, A European Journal, vol. 25, no. 6, pp. 1379-1390.
  • Colebatch, A, Frogley, B & Hill, A 2019, 'Phosphaisonitrile umpolung - synthesis and reactivity of chloro aminophosphino carbynes', Dalton Transactions, vol. 48, no. 28, pp. 10628-10641.
  • Plajer, A, Kopf, S, Colebatch, A et al 2019, 'Deprotonation, insertion and isomerisation in the post-functionalisation of tris-pyridyl aluminates', Dalton Transactions, vol. 48, no. 17, pp. 5692-5697.
  • Yang, E, Plajer, A, García-Romero, Á et al 2019, 'A Tris(3-pyridyl)stannane as a Building Block for Heterobimetallic Coordination Polymers and Supramolecular Cages', Chemistry, A European Journal, vol. 25, no. 61, pp. 14003-14009.
  • Hirano, M, Kobayashi, H, Ueda, T et al 2018, 'In Situ Routes to Catalytically Active Ru(0) Species by Reduction of Readily Available, Air-Stable Precursors', Organometallics, vol. 37, no. 7, pp. 1092-1102pp.
  • Adams, G, Colebatch, A, Skornia, J et al 2018, 'Dehydropolymerization of H3B·NMeH2 to Form Polyaminoboranes Using [Rh(Xantphos-alkyl)] Catalysts', Journal of the American Chemical Society, vol. 140, no. 4, pp. 1481-1495.
  • Colebatch, A, Hawkey Gilder, B, Whittell, G et al 2018, 'A General, Rhodium-Catalyzed, Synthesis of Deuterated Boranes and N-Methyl Polyaminoboranes', Chemistry, A European Journal, vol. 24, no. 21, pp. 5450-5455.
  • Plajer, A, Colebatch, A, Rizzuto, F et al 2018, 'How Changing the Bridgehead Can Affect the Properties of Tripodal Ligands', Angewandte Chemie International Edition, vol. 57, no. 22, pp. 6648-6652.
  • Plajer, A, Colebatch, A, Enders, M et al. 2018, 'The coordination chemistry of the neutral tris-2-pyridyl silicon ligand [PhSi(6-Me-2-py)3]', Dalton Transactions, vol. 47, no. 20, pp. 7036-7043.
  • Turner, J, Chilton, N, Kumar, A et al 2018, 'Iron Precatalysts with Bulky Tri(tert-butyl)cyclopentadienyl Ligands for the Dehydrocoupling of Dimethylamine-Borane', Chemistry, A European Journal, vol. 24, no. 53, pp. 14127-14136.
  • Pecharman, A, Colebatch, A, Hill, M et al. 2017, 'Easy access to nucleophilic boron through diborane to magnesium boryl metathesis', Nature Communications, vol. 8, no. 15022, pp. 1-7.
  • Colebatch, A & Hill, A 2017, 'Coordination chemistry of phosphinocarbynes: phosphorus vs. carbyne site selectivity', Dalton Transactions, vol. 46, no. 13, pp. 4355-4365pp.
  • Colebatch, A, Han, Y, Hill, A et al 2017, 'Rearrangement of bis(alkylidynyl)phosphines to phosphaacyls', Chemical Communications, vol. 53, no. 11, pp. 1832-1835 pp.
  • Anker, M, Colebatch, A, Iversen, K et al. 2017, 'Alane-Centered Ring Expansion of N‑Heterocyclic Carbenes', Organometallics, vol. 36, no. 6, pp. 1173-1178.
  • Colebatch, A, McKay, A, Beattie, N et al 2017, 'Fluoroarene Complexes with Small Bite Angle Bisphosphines: Routes to Amine-Borane and Aminoborylene Complexes', European Journal of Inorganic Chemistry, vol. 38-39, pp. 4533-4540.
  • Colebatch, A & Hill, A 2016, 'Chlorophosphino Carbyne Complexes of Tungsten', Organometallics, vol. 35, no. 13, pp. 2249-2255.
  • Colebatch, A, Hill, A & Sharma, M 2015, 'Synthesis and Reactivity of Phosphinocarbyne Complexes', Organometallics, vol. 34, no. 11, pp. 2165-2182.
  • Liptrot, D, Arrowsmith, M, Colebatch, A et al 2015, 'Beyond Dehydrocoupling: Group 2 Mediated Boron-Nitrogen Desilacoupling', Angewandte Chemie International Edition, vol. 54, no. 50, pp. 15280-15283.
  • Cade, I, Colebatch, A, Hill, A et al 2014, 'Allenylphosphonium complexes of rhodium and iridium', Organometallics, vol. 33, no. 12, pp. 3198-3204.
  • Colebatch, A & Hill, A 2014, 'Secondary Phosphinocarbyne and Phosphalsonitrile Complexes', Journal of the American Chemical Society, vol. 136, no. 50, pp. 17442-17445.
  • Colebatch, A, Cade, I, Hill, A et al 2013, 'η2-Allenyl- and η2-Alkynylphosphonium Complexes of Platinum', Organometallics, vol. 32, no. 17, pp. 4766-4774.
  • Hill, A, Colebatch, A, Cordiner, R et al. 2010, 'The odd bit of carbon', Comments on Inorganic Chemistry, vol. 31, no. 3-4, pp. 121-129.
  • Colebatch, A, Hill, A, Shang, R et al. 2010, 'Synthesis of a thiocarbamoyl alkylidyne complex and caveats associated with the use of [Mo(CLi)(CO)2(Tp*)] (Tp* = hydrotris(3,5-dimethylpyrazol-1-yl)borate)', Organometallics, vol. 29, no. 23, pp. 6482-6487.
  • Colebatch, A, Cordiner, R, Hill, A et al. 2009, 'A Bis-Carbyne (Ethanediylidyne) Complex via the Catalytic Demercuration of a Mercury Bis(carbido) Complex', Organometallics, vol. 28, no. 15, pp. 4394-4399.