Biography Narrative

cherif_image_for_bioChérif F. Matta, PhD, HDR, FRSA, FRSB, FInstP, FRSC is Professor at the Dept. of Chemistry and Physics at Mount Saint Vincent University and Adjunct Professor of Chemistry at Dalhousie University, Université Laval, Saint Mary’s University, and Zewail City of Science and Technology.


Professor Matta holds a Bachelor of Pharmaceutical Sciences from Alexandria University (Egypt), a PhD in Theoretical Chemistry from McMaster University (Canada) with Professor Richard F. W. Bader (1931-2012), and a Habilitation to Direct Research (HDR) from Université de Lorraine (France) under the guidance of Professor Claude Lecomte. He then went for a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Toronto in the group of Nobel Laureate Professor John C. Polanyi  followed by a second as an I. W. Killam Postdoctoral Fellow at Dalhousie University with Professor Russell J. Boyd. Matta has also benefited considerably from his long and close associations with Professor Lou Massa of the City University of New York (CUNY) and Professor André D. Bandrauk of Sherbrooke University.

Prof. Chérif Matta has ca. 150 publications including 2 books and has been Guest Editor for the Journal of Computational Chemistry, The Journal of Physical Chemistry A, Structural Chemistry, Foundations of Chemistry, Future Medicinal Chemistry, and Frontiers in Chemistry. He has given approx. 200 departmental seminars and conference presentations is some 30 countries around the World and has organized two-dozen conferences, seminars, and symposia. For his work, Prof. Matta received a number of prizes and awards and has been elected as Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC), Fellow of the Institute of Physics (FInstP), Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology (FRSB), and Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts (FRSA).

Chérif Matta currently serves as Member of the Canada Research Chairs (CRC) Program’s Interdisciplinary Adjudication Committee (IAC), Member of the Canadian Society for Chemistry (CSC)’s Accreditation Committee, and Member of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)’s Selection Committee (1604) – Research Tools and Instruments (RTI) Grants Program competition for the Chemistry. In the recent past he served a three year term as Member of NSERC’s Chemistry Evaluation Group. Matta is also a Member of the International Union of Crystallography (IUCr)’s Commission on Quantum Crystallography.

As an educator, Prof. Matta has taught ca. 70 courses mainly at Mount Saint Vincent University but also in a number of other institutions. Matta teaches physical chemistry, thermodynamics, quantum chemistry, biochemistry, and some physics courses such as waves and optics and quantum mechanics.

Beside working-out at the gym and recreational cycling, Matta’s interests includes philosophy (particularly the philosophy of science), artistic painting, and languages.

Updated 30 May 2020



A superimposition of the electron density contours of a Guanine-Cytosine DNA base pair in the molecular plane and lines of the gradient of this density. The density is partitioned into color-coded “atoms-in-molecules (AIM)”, each containing a single nucleus.(Click on image to enlarge).

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