In 2019, JCP began an annual special collection highlighting exceptional papers by emerging investigators. The collection has an even higher standard for acceptance than the journal, as it is intended to be a recognition of excellence to be included in the collection. Of the papers accepted to the special collection each year, two are chosen as winners of the Best Paper by an Emerging Investigator Award by a sub-committee of the Editorial Advisory Board.

This year’s collection is open for submissions! Learn more about the eligibility criteria and how to submit.

Published and Publishing Collections:

Collection Year: 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023

JCP Best Paper by an Emerging Investigator Award Winners


Bingqing Cheng

Bingqing Cheng
Assistant Professor
Institute of Science and Technology Austria

Computing chemical potentials of solutions from structure factors
Bingqing Cheng
J. Chem. Phys. 157, 121101 (2022)

Bingqing is an Assistant Professor at IST Austria. Prior to that, she obtained her PhD in Materials Science from EPFL in 2019. After graduation, she became a Junior Research Fellow at Trinity College, University of Cambridge, and then in 2020, a Departmental Early Career Fellow in the Department of Computer Science and Technology at Cambridge. Her research uses computer simulations to understand and predict material properties, with a particular focus on exploiting machine-learning methods to extend the scope of atomistic simulations.

Katrin Erath-Dulitz

Katrin Erath-Dulitz
Assistant Professor
Institut für Ionenphysik und Angewandte Physik, Universität Innsbruck

Spin-state-controlled chemi-ionization reactions between metastable helium atoms and ground-state lithium atoms
Tobias Sixt, Frank Stienkemeier, and Katrin Dulitz
J. Chem. Phys. 156, 114306 (2022)

Dr. Erath-Dulitz is an Assistant Professor of Physics at Universität Innsbruck (Austria), where her research deals with the study of chemical reactions in a regime dominated by quantum effects in order to understand fundamental reaction mechanisms, as well as the chemical evolution in space. She received her DPhil from the University of Oxford (UK) in 2015, for her work on the magnetic deceleration of supersonic beams for cold and controlled chemistry studies in ion traps. After a postdoc at ETH Zurich (Switzerland) on the high-resolution molecular spectroscopy of molecular cations, she continued in the field of cold and controlled chemistry at the University of Freiburg (Germany), with a focus on chemistry experiments with ultracold atoms and doped helium nanodroplets, respectively. This is also where the results presented in the article by Sixt et al. were obtained. From 2018-2022, she was a Liebig Fellow of the Union of Chemical Industry. In 2022, she was also a Fraunhofer Attract group leader in the field of laser-matter interaction at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (Fraunhofer ISE) in Freiburg.


Yoav Green

Yoav Green
Senior Lecturer (Assistant Professor)
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel

Conditions for electroneutrality breakdown in nanopores 
Yoav Green
J. Chem. Phys. 155, 184701 (2021)

Yoav Green received his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the Technion (Israel Institute of Technology), where his research focused on nanofluidics. Yoav holds a B.Sc. in Aerospace Engineering from the Technion and an M.Sc. in Physics from the Weizmann Institute of Science. Yoav completed his postdoctoral studies at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, working on biomechanics. Yoav currently heads the Fluid Mechanics Laboratory (FML), where the lab focuses on the fundamental physics of ion transport through charged nanochannels. The lab takes a multidisciplinary approach of theoretical modeling, numerical simulations, and experiments to elucidate the current-voltage response of nanofluidic systems.

Andrew J. Musser

Andrew J. Musser
Assistant Professor
Department of Chemistry & Chemical Biology, Cornell University, USA

Untargeted effects in organic exciton–polariton transient spectroscopy: A cautionary tale 
Scott Renken, Raj Pandya, Kyriacos Georgiou, Rahul Jayaprakash, Lizhi Gai, Zhen Shen, David G. Lidzey, Akshay Rao, and Andrew J. Musser
J. Chem. Phys. 155, 154701 (2021)

Andrew J. Musser received a Bachelor’s in Physics from Georgia Tech in 2006. Following stints in synthetic organic chemistry in Mainz and countertrafficking work in Moscow, he moved to Groningen, The Netherlands, in 2008. There he pursued a Master’s in Nanoscience at the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials, where he investigated DNA-block-copolymer materials for drug delivery and electronics. He returned to Physics in 2010 at the University of Cambridge, undertaking PhD and postdoctoral research with Richard Friend on the ultrafast exciton photophysics of organic semiconductors. From 2016 to 2019 he pursued postdoctoral research at the University of Sheffield with David Lidzey, developing an interest in the spectroscopy of organic exciton-polaritons. He moved to Cornell as an Assistant Professor in 2019. His group applies ultrafast optical spectroscopy and strong light-matter interactions to understand and control the ultrafast dynamics of organic semiconductors, framework materials, and photocatalysts.


Brianna Heazlewood

Brianna Heazlewood
EPSRC Early Career Fellow
University of Liverpool, UK

A stand-alone magnetic guide for producing tuneable radical beams
Chloé Miossec, Lok Yiu Wu, Paul Bertier, Michal Hejduk, Jutta Toscano, and Brianna R. Heazlewood
J. Chem. Phys. 153, 104202 (2020)

Brianna Heazlewood completed her undergraduate and PhD degrees at the University of Sydney, Australia. She moved to the University of Oxford in 2012, where she was awarded a series of fellowships. As an EPSRC (Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council) Early Career Fellow, Prof. Heazlewood started an independent research group in the Department of Chemistry at Oxford in 2016. She relocated to the Department of Physics at the University of Liverpool in March 2021. Prof. Heazlewood was awarded the 2020 Henry Moseley Medal and Prize by the Institute of Physics and was the recipient of a 2020 European Research Council Starting Grant. Her research examines chemical reaction dynamics at low temperatures, using external fields to manipulate the properties of ions, polar molecules and radicals.

Photo Credit: University of Cambridge

Stephen Cox
University of Cambridge, UK
Photo Credit: University of Cambridge

Macroscopic surface charges from microscopic simulations
Thomas Sayer and Stephen J. Cox
J. Chem. Phys. 153, 164709 (2020)

Stephen Cox completed his PhD at University College London, where he used computer simulations to investigate heterogeneous ice nucleation. From 2015 to 2017 he undertook postdoctoral research at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, where he established an interest in the theory of ion solvation and electrolyte solutions. Prof. Cox was awarded a research fellowship from the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 in 2017, and he is currently working in the Yusuf Hamied Department of Chemistry in Cambridge.


Photo credit: ETH Zurich / Giulia Marthaler

Jeremy O. Richardson
Assistant Professor of Theoretical Molecular Quantum Dynamics
Laboratory of Physical Chemistry, ETH Zurich
Photo credit: ETH Zurich / Giulia Marthaler

Instanton formulation of Fermi’s golden rule in the Marcus inverted regime
Eric R. Heller and Jeremy O. Richardson
J. Chem. Phys. 152, 034106 (2020)

Jeremy Richardson was born in Cardiff and studied at Cambridge University where he also took his PhD under the supervision of Stuart Althorpe.  He was a postdoc and Humboldt Research Fellow in Friedrich- Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg in the group of Michael Thoss and a Junior Research Fellow at Durham University.  In September 2016 he moved to ETH Zurich as the Assistant Professor of Theoretical Molecular Quantum Dynamics in the Laboratory of Physical Chemistry.  His research involves the development of semiclassical approaches for simulating quantum dynamics using classical approximations including ring-polymer dynamics, instantons and nonadiabatic trajectory methods.

Sandeep Sharma
Assistant Professor
Department of Chemistry, University of Colorado, Boulder

Multireference configuration interaction and perturbation theory without reduced density matrices
Ankit Mahajan, Nick S. Blunt, Iliya Sabzevari and Sandeep Sharma
J. Chem. Phys. 151, 211102 (2019)

Sandeep Sharma is working on developing first-principles methods to understand the electronic structure of materials that display strong electron correlation and large relativistic effects. The lab uses and contributes to ideas in the fields of tensor network states, quantum monte carlo and low/linear scaling quantum chemistry to develop algorithms with computational cost that scales as a low order polynomial of the size of the system. These methods are suitable for theoretical understanding of systems ranging from metalloenzymes, hetero/homogeneous catalysts and correlated quantum materials.