UC Santa Barbara materials and electrical and computer engineering professor Shuji Nakamura has been elected to Academia Sinica, Taiwan's preeminent research institution. Nakamura, one of six Nobel laureates at UCSB, is among 22 new scholars and scientists elected to the prestigious academy at its biennial Convocation of Academicians earlier this month.
"I am very honored to be elected a member of Academia Sinica, as it is the highest academic honor I could receive from Taiwan," Nakamura said.
Renown for his invention of the bright blue light emitting diodes, a technological achievement that paved the way toward white LED bulbs and their ubiquitous use in modern society, Nakamura joined the UCSB faculty in 2000 and was appointed to the Cree Chair in the Solid State Lighting and Display Center in 2001. In addition to the Nobel Prize in Physics, Nakamura is the winner of numerous highly important prizes, including the Benjamin Franklin Medal (2002); the Millenium Technology Prize (2006); and the Prince of Asturias Award for Technical Scientific Research (2008).
"I am so proud and honored to congratulate Professor Nakamura on his election to the prestigious Academia Sinica," said UCSB Chancellor Henry T. Yang, who was himself elected to the academy in 1992. "Dr. Nakamura has forever changed the world through the impact of his LED inventions, from energy-efficient lighting and displays to optical storage to innovative medical applications, with more still to come. His election as an Honorary Academician is a testament to his global leadership in advancing the frontiers of science and technology, as well as his humanitarian contribution to our world."
Academia Sinica collaborates with 31 research institutes across three divisions: Mathematics and Physical Sciences; Life Sciences and Humanities of Social Sciences. Many of its members also hold membership in some of the most prestigious academies in the U.S., including the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Members also have won notable international prizes including the Balzan Prize, the Wolf Prize and the Nobel Prize. Nakamura is Academia Sinica's ninth Nobel Laureate.