Michael Fisher

English physicist, as well as chemist and mathematician

Michael Ellis Fisher (born 3 September 1931) is an English physicist, chemist and mathematician. He is known for his work on statistical physics, including the theory of phase transitions and critical phenomena.

Michael Fisher
Born (1931-09-03) 3 September 1931 (age 88)
Fyzabad, Trinidad and Tobago
Known forStatistical physics

Academic backgroundEdit

Michael E. Fisher studied science at King's College London in 1951, and a PhD in physics in 1957. He began teaching at the college in 1958 and became a full professor in 1965. In 1966 he moved to Cornell University as professor of chemistry, physics, and mathematics. In 1971, he became a Fellow of the Royal Society. In 1983, he was elected a member of the National Academy of Sciences, chemistry section. Since 1987 he has been at the Institute for Physical Science and Technology, at the University of Maryland College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences.

Fisher currently lives in Maryland with his wife Sorrel. They have four children. Two of them are also theoretical physicists: Daniel S. Fisher is professor of Applied Physics at Stanford,[1] while Matthew P. A. Fisher is professor of Physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara.[2]


Fisher together with Kenneth G. Wilson and Leo Kadanoff won the Wolf Prize in 1980. In 1983, Fisher was awarded the Boltzmann Medal for his work on phase transitions and critical phenomena.[3] He won the Lars Onsager Prize in 1995 for his work on statistical mechanics. Other awards include:

  • Irving Langmuir Prize of the American Physical Society (1971)
  • Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (1979)[4]
  • Wolf Prize (1980)
  • Boltzmann Medal of the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics (1983)
  • NAS Award for Scientific Reviewing of the National Academy of Sciences (1983)[5]
  • Lars Onsager Prize of American Physical Society (1995)
  • Royal Medal in physics (2005):[6]
  • 2009 BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award in Basic Sciences (co-winner with Richard Zare);[7] see[8]
  • 2015 Rudranath Capildeo Prize for Applied Sciences and Technology-Gold, awarded by the Trinidad and Tobago's National Institute of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology (NIHERST)[9]


  1. "Stanford University Department of Applied Physics". Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  2. KITP at UCSB
  3. "The Boltzmann Award". Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  4. "Book of Members, 1780–2010: Chapter F" (PDF). American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 16 April 2011.
  5. "NAS Award for Scientific Reviewing". National Academy of Sciences. Archived from the original on 18 March 2011. Retrieved 27 February 2011.
  6. "Michael E Fisher". Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  7. BBVA Foundation (15 April 2010). "Richard N. Zare and Michael E. Fisher, 2009 BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge in Basic Sciences". YouTube. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  8. Interview with M.E. Fisher by the Spanish Physical Society
  9. "Institute for Physical Science and Technology". Retrieved 13 September 2016.


  • N. David Mermin, "My Life with Fisher", J. Stat. Phys. 110, 467–473 (2003); see also.

Other websitesEdit