Professor Polly Arnold has held the Crum Brown Chair of Chemistry at the University of Edinburgh since 2013, eight years after first joining the university. She earned her MA in Chemistry at the University of Oxford and PhD at the University of Sussex before heading to MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) to undertake a Postdoctoral Research position. Her research involves exploratory synthetic chemistry that challenges preconceived ideas of bonding and reactivity, particularly in d- and f-block metal systems. Her group is recognised for innovative catalytic transformations and in the activation of small, unreactive molecules. In 2017 Polly was awarded an OBE for services to chemistry and women in STEM.