Corin Wagen

photo by Julia Monaco


I'm the founder and CEO of Rowan, a startup building modern computational tools for chemistry. Briefly, we're working on making molecular simulation software that "gets out of the way" and allows scientists to focus on their research. If you're interested in using Rowan (or helping to build it), let me know!

Apart from Rowan, I like thinking critically about scientific institutions, progress, and books. I write about these things on my blog, which you can also follow on Substack.

From 2019 to 2023, I was a graduate student in the Jacobsen group at Harvard, where I studied the development and mechanism of selective organocatalytic reactions. My thesis defense can be viewed on Youtube. (I was also part of the inaugural class of UATX Polaris Fellows.)

From 2016 to 2019, I was an undergraduate at MIT, where I majored in chemistry and studied the design of new phosphine ligands for Pd-catalyzed C–F coupling in the Buchwald group.


Generality in Asymmetric Catalysis

comparison of SFC-UV and SFC-MS

Investigating Reaction Mechanism

summary of Prins project

Ab Initio Molecular Dynamics

radial distribution function of toluene about an oxonium ion

Software Development

some python code


  1. Wagen, C. C.; Wagen, A. M. Efficient and Accurate pKa Prediction Enabled by Pre-Trained Machine-Learned Interatomic Potentials. ChemRxiv, 2024. (preprint, ChemRxiv)
  2. Blackburn, M. A. S.; Wagen, C. C., Bodrogean, M. R.; Tadross, P. M.; Bendelsmith, A. J.; Kutateladze, D. A.; Jacobsen, E. N. Dual-Hydrogen-Bond Donor and Brønsted Acid Co-Catalysis Enables Highly Enantioselective Protio-Semipinacol Rearrangement Reactions. JACS, 2023, 145, 15036–15042. (link, preprint)
  3. Vonesh, H. L.; Wagen, C. C., McMinn, S. E.; Thedford, J. B.; Kwan, E. E.; Schindler, C. S. Inadequacy of Continuum Solvation for Polar Reactions: Predicting the Mechanism of Carbonyl–Olefin Metathesis. ChemRxiv, 2022. (preprint)
  4. Wagen, C. C.; Jacobsen, E. N. Evidence for Oxonium Ions in Ethereal "Hydrogen Chloride." Org. Lett, 2022, 24, 8826–8831. (link, preprint)

  5. Wagen, C. C.; McMinn, S. E.; Kwan, E. E.; Jacobsen, E. N. Screening for Generality in Asymmetric Catalysis. Nature, 2022, 610, 680–686. (link, preprint)

  6. Kutateladze, D. A.; Wagen, C. C.; Jacobsen, E. N. Chloride-Mediated Alkene Activation Drives Enantioselective Thiourea and Hydrogen Chloride Co-Catalyzed Prins Cyclizations. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2022, 144, 15812–15824. (link, preprint)
  7. Siegenfeld, A. P.; Roseman, S. A.; Roh, H.; Lue, N. Z.; Wagen, C. C.; Zhuo, E.; Johnstone, S. E.; Aryee, M. J.; Liau, B. B. Polycomb-lamina antagonism partitions heterochromatin at the nuclear periphery. Nat. Commun. 2022, 13, 4199. (link, preprint)
  8. Li, Q.; Levi, S. M.; Wagen, C. C.; Wendlandt, A. E.; Jacobsen, E. N. Site-Selective, Stereocontrolled Glycosylation of Minimally Protected Sugars. Nature, 2022, 608, 74–79. (link, preprint)

  9. Wagen, C. C.; Ingoglia, B, T.; Buchwald, S. L. Unexpected Formation of Hexasubstituted Arenes through a Twofold Palladium-Mediated Ligand Arylation. J. Org. Chem. 2019, 84, 12672–12679. (link, preprint)
  10. Ingoglia, B. T.; Wagen, C. C.; Buchwald, S. L. Biaryl Monophosphine Ligands in Palladium-Catalyzed C–N Coupling: An Updated User’s Guide. Tetrahedron, 2019, 75, 4199–4211. (link, free version)
  11. Yeon, Y.; Leem, S.; Wagen, C.; Lynch, V. M.; Kim, S. K.; Sessler, J. L. 3-(Dicyanomethylidene)indan-1-one Functionalized Calix[4]arene–Calix[4]pyrrole Hybrid: An Ion-Pair Sensor for Cesium Salts. Org. Lett. 2016, 8, 4396–4399. (link)