Six Stanford faculty elected to National Academy of Sciences

The faculty members have been elected to receive one of the highest honors for an American scientist in recognition of their achievements in original research.

Six Stanford faculty members were named this week as new members of the National Academy of Sciences. The academy is an honorific society that recognizes distinguished and continuing achievements in original research.

The academy's honorees have included such renowned scientists and inventors as Albert Einstein, Robert Oppenheimer, Thomas Edison, Orville Wright and Alexander Graham Bell. Nearly 200 living members of the academy have won Nobel Prizes.

The Stanford scholars were among 84 new members and 21 foreign associates from 14 countries, bringing the total number of active members to 2,179 and the total number of foreign associates to 437.

The new members will be inducted next April during the academy's 151st annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

Following are the newly elected Stanford members:

Greg Asner portrait

Greg Asner is a faculty scientist in the Department of Environmental Earth System Science and at the Carnegie Institution's Department of Global Ecology at Stanford. He has pioneered new methods for investigating tropical deforestation, degradation, ecosystem diversity, invasive species, carbon emissions and climate change using airborne and satellite remote sensing, and computer simulation modeling. Asner's innovations measure the chemistry, structure, biomass and biodiversity of Earth in unprecedented detail over massive areas not thought possible before, and have led to technologies for improving conservation assessments.

Ben Barres portrait

Ben Barres is a professor of neurobiology, of developmental biology and of neurology and neurological sciences, and chair of the Department of Neurobiology. His research focuses on glial cells, which constitute 90 percent of the cells in the brain but whose function remains poorly understood. His approach involves separating all the component cells in the developing nervous system and studying their interaction through innovative techniques.

Marcus Feldman portrait

Marcus Feldman is the Burnet C. and Mildred Finley Wohlford Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences and a professor of biology. He uses applied mathematics and computer modeling to simulate and analyze the process of evolution. His work focuses on the evolution of complex genetic systems that can undergo both natural selection and recombination, and the evolution of learning as one interface between modern methods in artificial intelligence and models of biological processes, including communication. He helped develop the quantitative theory of cultural evolution, which he applies to issues in human behavior, and also the theory of niche construction, which has wide applications in ecology and evolutionary analysis.

Emmanuel Mignot portrait

Emmanuel Mignot is the Craig Reynolds Professor of Sleep Medicine, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, and director of the Center for Sleep Sciences and Medicine. His lab focuses on the neurobiology, genetics and immunology of narcolepsy, a disorder that causes periods of extreme daytime sleepiness, and other sleep disorders. He is recognized as having discovered the cause of narcolepsy.

Alvin Roth portrait

Alvin E. Roth is the Craig and Susan McCaw Professor of Economics and a senior fellow at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research. Roth is acclaimed for his significant work in the fields of game theory, market design and experimental economics. He has emphasized applying economic theory to solutions for real-world problems, most notably improving the matching processes involved in kidney donor matching, the national medical residency program and the New York and Boston public high school system. He shared the 2012 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences for his work in market design.

Stephen Quake portrait

Stephen Quake is the Lee Otterson Professor in the School of Engineering and a professor of bioengineering, of applied physics and, by courtesy, of physics, as well as an investigator for the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Drawing upon his physics background, Quake has introduced large-scale quantitative approaches in many areas of biology that were previously impossible to address. His innovations include a rapid DNA sequencer, a non-invasive prenatal test for Down syndrome and the biological equivalent of the integrated circuit.