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National Academy of Sciences
National Academy of Engineering
Institute of Medicine
National Research Council
Our Members

On April 30, 2013, the National Academy of Sciences elected 84 new members in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. Election to the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, or Institute of Medicine is considered one of the highest professional honors among scientists, engineers, and health care professionals. Each year, new members are elected by current members based on outstanding achievement and commitment to service. Visit the NAS, NAE, and IOM membership sites for more information.

Members at a Glance

President Obama poses with several Academies members appointed to prominent positions early in his administration.

The National Academy of Sciences membership consists of approximately 2,200 members and 420 foreign associates, each of whom is affiliated with one of 31 disciplinary sections. The Institute of Medicine has more than 1,800 members and foreign associates. The National Academy of Engineering has more than 2,000 peer-elected members and foreign associates.

More than 300 NAS, NAE, and IOM members are Nobel laureates.

The National Medal of Science and the National Medal of Technology and Innovation have been awarded to more than 250 of our members.

Notable Members, Past and Present

Listen to InterViews of NAS member Yu Xie (sociology).

Biographical Memoirs are brief biographies of influential National Academy of Sciences members such as Alexander Graham Bell, Thomas Edison, and Margaret Mead. Written by those who knew them or their work, these biographies provide a personal and scholarly view of the lives and work of America's most distinguished scientists and a biographical history of science in the United States. 

The National Academy of Engineering has published 12 volumes of memorial tributes to deceased members; the publications can be found on


Service to the Nation

Each year more than 6,000 experts, including Academy members, serve as volunteers on hundreds of study committees that examine some of society's most pressing issues. The results of their efforts frequently form the basis of public policies for decades to come.

In addition, members of our standing committees, roundtables, and groups such as the Presidents' Circle provide leadership, guidance, and support in many areas.

National Associates

More than 1,000 individuals have been awarded the lifetime designation of National Associate to formally honor their extraordinary service in serving on committees or acting as report reviewers.

Members in the News

Members Awarded 2014 Kavli Prizes

left to right: Alan H. Guth; Andrei Linde (©L Cicero/Stanford); Sir John B. Pendry (©M Finn-Kelcey/Imperial College London); Brenda Milner (©O Egan/McGill University); Marcus Raichle

May 29, 2014 -- Five members of the National Academy of Sciences, one of whom is also a member of the Institute of Medicine, were among the nine winners of the 2014 Kavli Prizes announced today.

MIT's Alan H. Guth and Stanford's Andrei D. Linde, both NAS members, will share the prize in the field of astrophysics with a third scientist, Alexei Starobinsky from the Russian Academy of Sciences, "for pioneering the theory of cosmic inflation."

Sir John Pendry, an NAS foreign associate with the UK's Imperial College London, will share the award in nanoscience with France's Thomas W. Ebbesen and Germany's Stefan W. Hell "for their transformative contributions to the field of nano-optics."

McGill University's Brenda Milner, an NAS foreign associate, and Washington University's Marcus E. Raichle, a joint NAS/IOM member, will share the prize in neuroscience with the UK's John O'Keefe "for the discovery of specialized brain networks for memory and cognition."

The Kavli Prizes are awarded by the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters. Laureates in each category -- astrophysics, nanoscience, and neuroscience -- share a cash reward of $1 million.

In BBC Interview, NAS Member Discusses Future of Brain Research

Jan. 30, 2014 -- National Academy of Sciences member Nicholas Spitzer, distinguished professor of neurobiology at the University of California, San Diego, spoke with BBC Future and discussed what he believes the coming years will bring in brain research, including exciting new discoveries about the human brain, technological advancements that will provide deeper insight into the brain, and much-needed treatments for neurodegenerative disorders. Watch the interview

Presidential Medal of Freedom Recipients Honored

Nov. 20, 2013 -- At a White House ceremony today, recipients of the 2013 Presidential Medal of Freedom were honored, including Daniel Kahneman (NAS member) and Mario Molina (NAS/IOM member). The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the nation's highest civilian honor, presented to individuals who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors. This year marks 50 years since the medal was established.

NAS Member Shares 2013 Nobel in Economics

Oct. 14, 2013 -- National Academy of Sciences member Lars Peter Hansen along with Eugene Fama and Robert Shiller have been awarded the 2013 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences "for their empirical analysis of asset prices."

Members Win 2013 Nobel in Chemistry

Oct. 9, 2013 -- National Academy of Sciences members Martin Karplus, Michael Levitt, and Arieh Warshel have won this year's Nobel Prize in chemistry "for the development of the multiscale models for complex chemical systems."

Members Receive Nobel Prize in Medicine

Oct. 7, 2013 -- National Academy of Sciences and Institute of Medicine members James Rothman and Thomas Suedhof along with NAS member Randy Schekman have won the 2013 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. The three were recognized for their discoveries of machinery regulating vesicle traffic, a major transport system in our cells.

Lasker Foundation Awards Recognize Academy Members, Others for Work to Prevent Disease, Reduce Disability, and Diminish Suffering

Sept. 11, 2013 -- The Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation announced on Monday that Richard H. Scheller and Thomas C. Südhof will receive the 2013 Albert Lasker Basic Medical Research Award. Both are members of the National Academy of Sciences; Südhof is an Institute of Medicine member as well. The two are being recognized for discoveries concerning the molecular machinery and regulatory mechanism that underlie the rapid release of neurotransmitters.

Other 2013 recipients are Graeme M. Clark, Ingeborg Hochmair, and Blake S. Wilson, who will receive the Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award; and Bill and Melinda Gates, who will receive the Lasker-Bloomberg Public Service Award. Earlier this year, the Gateses received the National Academy of Sciences' most prestigious award, the Public Welfare Medal.

Members Honored as Champions of Change

Sept. 10, 2013 -- Jeremiah P. Ostriker and David J. Lipman will be honored as two of thirteen Champions of Change who are promoting and using open scientific data and publications to accelerate progress and improve our world. Ostriker and Lipman are both members of the NAS; Lipman is also an IOM member.

Members to Receive National Medals of Science, Technology

Jan. 30, 2013 -- President Obama will award the National Medal of Science and National Medal of Technology and Innovation on Feb. 1 to several members of the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. The National Medal of Science honors individuals who have made outstanding contributions to science and engineering, and the National Medal of Technology and Innovation recognizes those who have made lasting contributions to America’s competitiveness and quality of life and helped strengthen the nation’s technological work force.

Members to receive the National Medal of Science:  

Members to receive the National Medal of Technology and Innovation:

Read the full White House announcement