Prof. Eugenia Kumacheva

Materials Witness

'Our research affects tissue engineering, solar energy, greenhouse gas sequestration and robotics.'


Eugenia Kumacheva is a Professor of Chemistry at the University of Toronto. We asked everything from why she chose her field of study to what’s on her playlist in hopes of giving you a better understanding of what goes on outside the lab for one of the best minds in Canadian research.

What inspired you to become a scientist?
As usual, a chemistry teacher – with beautiful demonstrations.

What do you like most about being a scientist?
The possibility to create – to hypothesise, come up with an idea and prove that it works.

What do you envision in the future of your field?
I work in the materials field. It has a great future, as most of chemistry does is the generation of new materials.

How will your research make a difference in our lives?
It may have great impact – from tissue engineering to the use of solar energy, sequestration of green house gases and soft robotics.

What advice would you give young researchers?
Perhaps, to make sure that science makes you really excited. If you do not feel it, try to do something else.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Hard to choose. Every year brings new accomplishments.

What do you read?
Almost everything but I do not like science fiction and comics.

What’s on your playlist?
Classics, Italian and French romantic songs, Leonard Cohen and Chris de Burgh.

If you could meet any historical figure who would it be and why?
Andrey Sacharov.

If you could do any profession other than your own what would it be?
A writer.

What do you like to do for fun?
Latin American dancing, swimming, wind-surfing.

Want to learn even more about Prof. Kumacheva? Check out her Orange Chair Interview.