Lewis elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — University of Illinois professors Jennifer A. Lewis and Edward Diener are among 220 new members named to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

The academy, founded in 1780, is one of the oldest honorary societies in the nation. Fellowship honors outstanding leadership and scholarship in a variety of fields. New members join the ranks of Albert Einstein, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Benjamin Franklin, George Washington and other influential Americans.

“The election of professors Diener and Lewis highlights their extraordinary contributions in scholarship and leadership,” said Phyllis M. Wise, the chancellor of the Urbana-Champaign campus. “They are world leaders in behavioral science and materials research, adding their legacies to the tradition of excellence at Illinois. We are proud to have them recognized among such distinguished company.”

Lewis, the Hans Thurnauer Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, has made pioneering contributions to the directed assembly of soft functional materials. Her research focuses on engineering the flow behavior and structure of soft matter composed of colloidal, polymeric and molecular building blocks. She applies her expertise to the design of functional inks for planar and three-dimensional printing. Recently she and her research group have produced highly conductive electrode inks for printed electronic and solar devices, scaffolds for tissue engineering and lightweight structural materials.

Lewis also serves as the director of the Frederick Seitz Materials Research Laboratory at the U. of I., one of the premier interdisciplinary research facilities in the nation.

Lewis earned her doctorate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1991. She joined the faculty at Illinois in 1990, where she also is affiliated with the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering department and with the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology.

Lewis has written more than 100 published papers and holds eight patents. Among many other honors, she has been named a fellow of the Materials Research Society, the American Physical Society, and the American Ceramic Society.

Diener, the Joseph R. Smiley Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Illinois, was selected for his pioneering contributions to psychological science. Diener also is a 2012 recipient of the American Psychological Association’s Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award.

Now an emeritus professor of psychology at Illinois and a senior scientist with the Gallup organization, Diener joined the Illinois faculty in 1974. Much of his career has been devoted to measuring well-being and understanding the cultural, personality and economic factors that influence it.

Diener is a fellow and past president of the International Positive Psychology Association, the International Society of Quality of Life Studies, and the Society of Personality and Social Psychology. He also is a fellow of the American Psychological Society, the APA, the Society of Personality and Social Psychology and the Society of Experimental Psychology.

Diener has written, edited and co-edited several books on subjective well-being. He is a co-author, with his son Robert Biswas-Diener, of “Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth.” Diener was the first to analyze data on happiness and income from the Gallup World Poll, the first worldwide survey of more than 136,000 people in 132 nations.

Diener earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology from California State University at Fresno and his doctorate in personality psychology from the University of Washington.

The American Academy for Arts and Sciences has more than 4,000 fellows and 600 foreign honorary members, including more than 250 Nobel laureates and 60 Pulitzer Prize winners.