Foster Bio

Johan Foster
University of British Columbia


Prof. Foster focuses on advanced functional and supramolecular bio(nano)materials.

Currently, Johan is the NSERC Canfor Industrial Research Chair in Advanced Bioproducts at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. He was previously an Associate Professor and the Digges Faculty Fellow in the Materials Science and Engineering Department at Virginia Tech.

Johan was previously leading a group at the Adolphe Merkle Institute (AMI) in Switzerland, focusing on cellulosic nanocrystals, smart materials, nanocomposites, synthesis, functionalization, and biomedical implants. He came to the institute after doing a post-doctoral fellowship with Bert Meijer at Technical University Eindhoven, in The Netherlands, and a Ph.D. at Simon Fraser University in Canada.

Johan has 90+ peer reviewed papers, an H Index = 35. i10-Index = 66. He has given 80+ Invited talks, been a session chair at a wide range of international symposia. He is a member of four peer reviewed journal editorial boards. He is an expert for the European Research Commission (ERC) Marie Curie Innovative Training Networks (ITN), an expert for International Organization for Standardization (ISO), ISO/TC 229 WG 2 and is the official departmental evaluator, University of Ghana, Department of Biomedical Engineering (2017-2019).

Johan has participated in TAPPI NANO conferences since 2011, including organizing sessions, Co-Chairing the 2016 TAPPI NANO in Grenoble with Julien Bras and Alain Dufresne, and also acting as the Keynote Webinar Chair. He also organizes symposia at the American Chemical Society National Meetings (the largest gathering of Chemists in the world), specifically in ACS CELL and ACS POLY, on Smart Materials (including smart polymers, stimuli responsive materials and structured scaffolds).

Johan plans to work closely with Heli and Lars, moving TAPPI NANO forward, engaging new members, current members, and spreading the ‘gospel’ of cellulose nanomaterials, bioproducts and renewable materials.