Interest towards metal organic frameworks has experienced an exceedingly fascinating growth in the past decade due to the unique features that these materials exhibit, such as tunable structure and pore size, which made them attractive for many different fields of chemistry. Great potential has been shown during the years for the applications of metal nanoparticles in different fields, especially in catalysis. The deeper understanding of the physicochemical properties of ZIFs along with the possibility of fine tuning the crystalline network provided the researchers with an attracting new support material that can furnish a beneficial environment for the encapsulation of metal nanoparticles. Especially, the pore system resembling those of the zeolites provides a confinement for the growth of the metal species, in which the distribution of pore size is usually in the micropore range and is extremely important for catalytic applications. The synthetic modifications that can be carried out prior- or post-synthetically on the ZIF support offer a wide range of different functionalities that can be introduced into the structure to be finally exploited. These moieties are generally very important in the stabilization of the metal nanoparticles of which control of the dimensions is critical to obtain high catalytically active materials. Hitherto, this review is highlighting the role of ZIFs in different catalytic reactions, especially as support of metal nanoparticles, overlooking the MOFs which have been already extensively discussed.
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