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Table of Contents

Biography

AbstractImportant DatesOccupationPlacesSubjects

Relationships

PeopleInstitutions

Resources

Archival as AuthorArchival as SubjectPublished as AuthorPublished as Subject

J. C. Polanyi

Photo

Dates

January 23, 1929 – present

Authorized Form of Name

Polanyi, J. C., 1929-

Additional Forms of Names

Polanyi, J. C. (John C.), 1929-

Polanyi, John, 1929-

Polanyi, John C., 1929-

Biography

Abstract

John C. Polanyi was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1986, alongside Dudley R. Herschbach and Yuan T. Lee "for their contributions concerning the dynamics of chemical elementary processes." He held positions at the National Research Council Laboratories in Ottawa, Canada, Princeton University, and the University of Toronto.

Important Dates

January 23, 1929Birth, Berlin (Germany).

1949Obtained BSc, University of Manchester, Manchester (England).

1920Obtained MSc, University of Manchester, Manchester (England).

1952Obtained PhD, University of Manchester, Manchester (England).

1952 – 1954Postdoctoral Fellow, National Research Council Laboratories, Ottawa (Ont.).

1954 – 1956Research Associate, Princeton University, Princeton (N.J.).

1956 – presentLecturer (1956-1957); Assistant Professor (1957-1960); Associate Professor (1960-1962); Professor (1957- 1974); and University Professor (1974- present), University of Toronto, Toronto (Ont.).

1959 – 1963Fellow, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

1962Awarded the Marlow Medal, Faraday Society.

1964Obtained DSc, University of Manchester, Manchester (England).

1965Awarded the Centenary Medal, British Chemical Society.

1965Awarded the Steacie Prize for Natural Sciences, E.W.R. Steacie Memorial Fund.

1966Fellow, Royal Society of Canada.

1967Awarded the Norada Award, Chemical Institute of Canada.

1969Awarded Mack Award and Lectureship, Ohio State University.

1970Produced film "Concepts in Reaction Dynamics".

1970Honorary Doctorate degree, University of Waterloo.

1970Reilly Lecturer, University of Notre Dame.

1971Purves Lecturer, McGill University.

1971Fellow, Royal Society (Great Britain).

1974Philips Lecturer, Haverford College.

1974F. J. Toole Lecturer, University of New Brunswick.

1974 – 1979Officer (1974) and Companion (1979), the Order of Canada.

1975Kistiakowsky Lecturer, Harvard University.

1975Camile and Henry Dreyfus Lecturer, University of Saskatchewan.

1976Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

1976Honorary Doctorate degree, Memorial University.

1976Laird Lecturer, University of Western Ontario.

1976Awarded the Chemical Institute of Canada Medal.

1977Awarded Henry Marshall Tory Medal, Royal Society of Canada.

1977Honorary Doctorate degree, McMaster University.

1977CIL Distinguished Lecturer, Simon Fraser University.

1977Gucker Lecturer, Indiana University.

1978Member, National Academy of Sciences.

1978Remsen Award and Lectureship, American Chemical Society.

1978Jacob Bronkowski Memorial Lecturer, University of Toronto.

1979Hutchinson Lecturer, University of Rochester.

1979 – 1980Guggenheim Memorial Fellow, Guggenheim Foundation.

1980Priestley Lecturer, Pennsylvania State University.

1982Honorary Doctorate degree, Harvard University.

1982Awarded the Wolf Prize in Chemistry.

1982Advisory Board Member, Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics, Germany.

1982Barre Lecturer, University of Montreal.

1982Sherman Fairchild Distinguished Scholar, California Institute of Technology.

1983W. J. Chute Distinguished Lecturer in Chemistry, Dalhousie University.

1984Honorary Doctorate degree, St. Francis Xavier University.

1986Awarded Nobel Prize in Chemistry alongside Dudley R. Herschbach and Yuan T. Lee "for their contributions concerning the dynamics of chemical elementary processes".

1986Member, Pontifical Academy of Rome.

1988Fellow, Royal Society of Edinburgh.

1988Awarded the Izaak Walton Killam Memorial Prize.

1988Board Member, Ontario Laser and Lightwave Research Centre, Canada.

1989Awarded the Royal Medal, Royal Society (Great Britain).

1989Honorary Consultant, Institute for Molecular Science, Okazaki, Japan.

1990Honorary Doctoral degree, McGill University.

1991Board Member, Steacie Institute for Molecular Sciences, Canada.

1991Honorary Fellow, Royal Society of Chemistry, United Kingdom.

1991Honorary Fellow, Chemical Institute of Canada.

1992Awarded John Polanyi Lecture Award, Canadian Society of Chemistry.

Occupation

Physical chemist.

Places

Birth

Berlin (Germany)

Undergraduate Education

Manchester (England)

Graduate Education

Manchester (England)

Employment

Ottawa (Ont.)

Princeton (N.J.)

Toronto (Ont.)

Subjects

Chemical elements.

Chemical kinetics.

Physical chemistry.

Relationships

People

Family

Davidson, Anne Ferrar

Wife, married 1958.

Polanyi, Magda Elizabeth

Mother.

Polanyi, Margaret Alexandra

Daughter.

Polanyi, Michael Ferrar

Son.

Polanyi, Michael, 1891-1976

Father.

Advisors & Collaborators

Ayscough, Peter B. (Peter Brian)

Advised by Polanyi at University of Toronto.

Garrett, Simon J.

Advised by Polanyi at University of Toronto.

Hepburn, John W.

Advised by Polanyi at University of Toronto.

Herschbach, Dudley R.

Shared 1986 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Polanyi and Lee "for their contributions concerning the dynamics of chemical elementary processes."

Huang, Kai

Advised by Polanyi at University of Toronto.

Karl, Gabriel

Advised by Polanyi at University of Toronto.

Lee, Yuan Tseh, 1936-

Shared 1986 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Polyani and Herschbach "for their contributions concerning the dynamics of chemical elementary processes."

Matta, Chérif F.

Advised by Polanyi at University of Toronto.

McNab, Iain R.

Collaborated with Polanyi at University of Toronto.

Piecuch, Piotr

Advised by Polanyi at University of Toronto.

Warhurst, Ernest

Research Advisor at University of Manchester.

Zeng, Hua Chun, 1956-

Advised by Polanyi at University of Toronto.

Additional

Townes, Charles H.

Institutions

Major Positions

Princeton University. Department of Chemistry

Research Associate.

University of Toronto

Lecturer; Assistant Professor; Associate Professor; Professor; University Professor; and Jacob Bronkowski Memorial Lecturer.

Professional Activities & Affiliations

Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

Fellow.

American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Member.

American Chemical Society

Awarded Remsen Award and Lectureship (1978).

Bunshi Kagaku Kenkyūjo

Honorary Consultant.

California Institute of Technology

Sherman Fairchild Distinguished Scholar.

Canadian Society for Chemistry

Awarded the namesake John Polanyi Lecture Award (1992).

Chemical Institute of Canada

Awarded the Norada Award (1967), the Chemical Institute of Canada Medal (1976), and named Honorary Fellow.

Dalhousie University

W. J. Chute Distinguished Lecturer in Chemistry.

Faraday Society

Awarded the Marlow Medal (1962).

Harvard University

Honorary Doctorate degree (1982) and Kistiakowsky Lecturer.

Haverford College

Philips Lecturer.

Indiana University, Bloomington

Gucker Lecturer.

John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation

Guggenheim Memorial Fellow.

Max-Planck-Institut für Quantenoptik

Advisory Board Member.

McGill University

Purves Lecturer and Honorary Doctorate degree (1990).

McMaster University

Honorary Doctorate degree (1977).

Memorial University of Newfoundland

Honorary Doctorate degree (1976).

National Academy of Sciences (U.S.)

Member.

National Research Council of Canada

Postdoctoral Research Fellow and Board Member, Steacie Institute for Molecular Sciences.

Ohio State University

Awarded Mack Award and Lectureship (1969).

Ontario Laser and Lightwave Research Centre‏

Board Member.

Order of Canada

Officer and Companion.

Pennsylvania State University

Priestley Lecturer.

Pontificia Accademia delle scienze

Member.

Royal Society (Great Britain)

Fellow and awarded Royal Medal (1989).

Royal Society of Canada

Fellow and awarded Henry Marshall Tory Medal (1977).

Royal Society of Chemistry (Great Britain)

Honorary Fellow, and Awarded Centenary Medal (1965).

Royal Society of Edinburgh

Fellow.

Simon Fraser University

CIL Distinguished Lecturer.

St. Francis Xavier University

Honorary Doctorate degree (1984).

Université de Montréal

Barre Lecturer.

University of Manchester

Received BSc (1949); MSc (1950); PhD (1952); and DSc (1964).

University of New Brunswick

F. J. Toole Lecturer.

University of Notre Dame

Reilly Lecturer.

University of Rochester

Hutchinson Lecturer.

University of Saskatchewan

Camile and Henry Dreyfus Lecturer.

University of Waterloo

Honorary Doctorate degree (1970).

University of Western Ontario

Laird Lecturer.

Wolf Foundation Prizes

Wolf Prize in Chemistry (1982).

Resources

Archival Resources

Author

J. C. Polanyi response to Laser History Survey, 1984.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Nobel Voices Videohistory Project collection, 2000-2001.

Archives Center

Smithsonian Institution. National Museum of American History

MRC 601, 12th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20560, USA

Subject

AIP Center for History of Physics responses to Laser History Project Survey, 1983.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Published Resources

Author

John Charles Polanyi, CV

The dangers of nuclear war : a Pugwash symposium / edited by Franklyn Griffiths and John C. Polanyi foreword by Pierre Elliott Trudeau.

Subject

Encyclopedia Britannica - John Polanyi.

J. C. Polanyi Nobel Prize biography.

John C. Polanyi Professional Profile, University of Toronto