Joe Elias

Assistant Professor
Photo of Assistant Professor Joe Elias


(617) 521-2775

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About Me

I joined the faculty of Simmons University in 2022. Previously, I was an Instructor of Chemistry at Lasell University and a postdoctoral researcher at Harvard University, where I studied electrochemical conversions for sustainable practices with Professor Daniel G. Nocera. I earned a PhD in Inorganic Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2016, and a BA in Chemistry from Reed College in 2009. When I am not in the lab or teaching, I enjoy baking bread, cooking, and going on adventures with my poodle, Millie. I am from Philadelphia, and currently live in Somerville, MA.

My research interests lie at the intersection of Inorganic Chemistry, Electrochemistry, and Materials Science. Using nature as inspiration, I am interested in developing novel inorganic materials for their application as catalysts for electrochemical reactions related to sustainability and clean energy. No other technique gives the experimental chemist more control over the chemical potentials of species in solution than electrochemistry, and hence electrochemical methods are poised to deliver solutions to some of society’s greatest challenges. The most notable of these challenges are addressing the environmental and ecological consequences of the rapid human population growth brought on by industrialization.

Three major branches of my research agenda include electrocatalytic CO2 reduction, biosensors for “forever chemicals,” and electrochemical denitrification. In the context of these projects, I hope students will expand their chemical toolkit to include learning new nanoparticle synthesis methods, gain proficiency in advanced solid-state chemistry characterization techniques and broadening their knowledge of electrochemistry as a powerful analytical tool.

What I Teach

  • CHEM 113 - General & Quantitative Chemistry I
  • CHEM 248 - Descriptive Inorganic Chemistry
  • PHYS 210 - Imaging of Materials
  • CHEM/PHYS 150/250 - Research Experience

Research/Special Projects