Past Professor

David Pines

CAS Professor of Physics; Founding CAS Director

Professor Pines has received national and international recognition for his contributions to the theory of many-body systems and to theoretical astrophysics. He carried out ground-breaking studies of classical and quantum plasmas, electrons in metals, collective excitations in solids, superconductivity, superfluidity, nuclear structure, compact X-ray sources, elementary excitations and transport in helium liquids, superfluidity in neutron stars, and, most recently, high-temperature superconductors and emergent behavior in heavy electron materials and other forms of complex adaptive matter. The founding director of the Center for Advanced Study (1968-71), he is the founding editor of the series “Frontiers in Physics” that began in 1961, and for twenty years was editor of Reviews of Modern Physics. An active contributor to the National Research Council, he has been influential as an organizer of international symposia, workshops, and scientific exchange programs. 

He received the Freimann Prize in Theoretical Condensed Matter Physics, Dirac Silver Medal for the advancement of theoretical physics, Eugene Feenberg Memorial Medal “for his contributions to the theory of many-body systems,” and Tau Beta Pi Daniel C. Drucker Eminent Faculty Award (1994) of the University of Illinois College of Engineering for his “exemplary contributions to the understanding of physics.” 

He was a Guggenheim Fellow (1963, 1970), Lorentz Professor at the University of Leiden (1971), Sherman Fairchild Distinguished Scholar at CalTech (1977-78), B.T. Matthias Visiting Scholar at Los Alamos National Laboratory (1986), a visiting professor at the Collège de France (1989), S. Ulam Visiting Scholar at Los Alamos National Laboratory (1996), Regent’s Lecturer in the UCLA Department of Physics (2000), and Visiting Fellow Commoner at Trinity College, University of Cambridge (spring 2000). He is a cofounder and member of the Science Board of the Santa Fe Institute, where he has served as chair, board of trustees, vice-president, and cochair of the Science Board and Science Steering Committee. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, American Philosophical Society, and American Academy of Arts and Sciences; a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science; a foreign member of the Russian Academy of Sciences; and an honorary member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.

He is presently a Distinguished Research Professor of Physics at UC Davis and a UIUC Research Professor of Physics. In 2009, he received a Doctor of Science, honoris causa, from the University of St. Andrews for his contributions to physics and to international scientific cooperation, and the John Bardeen Prize for his contributions to superconductivity and nuclear superfluidity.  In September 2011, after 12 years as the Founder and Co-Director of the Institute for Complex Adaptive Matter (ICAM), a distributed global “Institute without Walls” whose scientists study emergent behavior in matter and society in its 75 branches in the US and abroad, he retired from this position and became ICAM’s Chief Evangelist.  In 2013, he was elected as an honorary member of the Science Academy, Istanbul and received the J.D. Jackson Excellence in Graduate Education Award from the AAPT for his graduate texts and for founding the series Frontiers in Physics.

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In memoriam