Simon completed a BSc(Hons) in 1987 and a PhD in 1991, both at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand. His PhD research (with Murray McEwan) and his postdoctoral studies from 1991 to 1993 (with Diethard Bohme, at York University in Toronto, Canada) both centred on experimental studies of gas-phase ion/molecule reactions. From 1994 to 1997 he worked as a lecturer in the School of Chemistry (UNSW, ADFA) and since then has been a research associate for Mick Collins (RSC, ANU) and Eric Magnusson (Chemistry, University College, UNSW, ADFA). He joined the Stranger / Inorganic Computational Chemistry group at ANU in 2000 as a research associate.
Current research interests involve quantum chemical studies of (i) metal-metal bonding in polynuclear metal systems and (ii) the mechanism of water oxidation in the Mn4Ca cluster in Photosystem II. Simon currently lectures in the CHEM3023 (Physical Aspects of Inorganic Chemistry) and CHEM3064 (Practical Aspects of Computational Chemistry) and he is a Chief Investigator in the Australia-China Joint Research Centre for Functional Molecular Materials).