Dr. Mark Goulding CChem FRSC

An experienced chemical scientist with extensive insight at both lab and leadership level. Innovation process, R&D digitalization and electronic lab notebook expert.

From discovery synthesis to R&D leadership in the fields of display and electronic materials, via technology scouting and optimisation of early stage innovation processes to leading an R&D digitalization initiative within Merck’s Performance Materials Business Sector.  The vision and reality of the fully connected, digitalised lab needs to consider apps, instruments, connectivity, data, security… but most importantly people.

Key Skills:

Experienced matrix leader

Inspiring leadership by influence

Yellow-Red Insights, a natural network builder

Deep, perceptive technical knowledge of R&D processes

On time Project delivery

Basic German Language Skills 


April 2018 – December 2019 ; Director, Business Project Lead.  Merck Chemicals Ltd. Southampton, UK

Key responsibilities

  • Leading initiative to digitalise the R&D workflow. Fully capture data, create a connected lab and improve the lives of lab scientists across Chemistry, Formulation & Physics fields.
  • Vision, strategy and tactics for initiative by extensive stakeholder and user consultation. 
  • Landscaping of current practice and future needs.
  • Evaluation of Electronic Lab Notebook (ELN) options for fit to user requirements.
  • Rapid Prototyping of ELN’s, connected lab equipment and machine learning concepts using a “work cheap, work quick, fail fast” approach.
  • Inspiring projects centred on applications of deep learning methodologies in R&D to improve efficiency.
  • Reaching out to understand connected lab, digitalised R&D & Lab best practice.
  • Representing Merck to the SmartLab & Digitalisation of R&D community globally.

Key achievements

  • “Reunification” of Merck’s synthesis ELN dataset in 2018. Significant improvements to R&D efficiency and collaborative working.
  • Hackathon lead with ELN developers to create full “digital formulation” proof of concept in 2019.
  • Application landscaping, gap analysis, user requirements, RfP, vendor selection, Pilot studies for ELN in 2019.

May 2017 – Apr 2018;
R&D Foundations Director. Merck Chemicals Ltd. Southampton, UK

Part of team who successfully launched a new organisational structure based on matrix of competency centres and projects. Extensive mentoring at open innovation events in 2017 & development of a digital open innovation portal.

Nov 2013 – May 2017
; Head of Technology Scouting & Feasibility, Europe. Merck Chemicals Ltd. Southampton, UK

Responsible for European technology scouting & feasibility activities within Merck's Performance Materials Business unit. Identifying and evaluating opportunities for novel technology-driven business opportunities within Merck's focus topic fields.

2010 – Nov 2013; Senior Manager, Flexible Display Materials. Merck Chemicals Ltd. Southampton, UK

Responsible for Merck's platform-based activities (synthesis, formulation and printing) to develop display material solutions for reflective and e-paper displays (full-colour electrophoretic, electrowetting, electrokinetic).

2000 – 2010; Project Manager Merck Chemicals Ltd. Southampton, UK

R&D project manager based at UK R&D site specialising in new display applications. 

1998 – 1999; Visiting Post-Doctoral Researcher. Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany

Discovery synthesis of novel liquid crystals.

Education and qualifications (in parallel with employment):

Chartered Chemist, Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry – 2003

PhD – University of Southampton, Department of Chemistry “Novel nematic and chiral nematic liquid crystalline materials for applications.” – 1995

Graduateship of the Royal Society of Chemistry Pt 2, 2/1. – Kingston Polytechnic, Department of Chemistry.  – 1990

Patents, Papers, Appointments:

  • Panel Chair, Panel Member, Reviewer – EPSRC Peer review college – 2006 – present
  • Panel member – UKRI Future Leader Fellowship Panel college – 2018 – present 
  • Elected, then appointed member – RSC Materials Chemistry Division Council – 2010 – 2016
  • 36 granted patents & 23 published papers in display & electronic materials fields (h-index 11)


Adventure Travel. Motorcycling & green-laning. Restoration of 70’s and 80’s motorbikes.
Fitness training & Parkrun as runner and volunteer.
Organic vegetable gardener.