Lam, Lui

Professor, Physics & Astronomy




Preferred: (408) 924-5261


  • Doctor of Philosophy, Physics, Columbia University in the City of New York, New York, United States, 1973
  • Master of Science, Physics, Columbia University in the City of New York, New York, United States, 1969
  • Master of Science, Physics, University of British Columbia, British Columbia, Canada, 1968
  • Bachelor of Science, Physics and Mathematics, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong Island, Hong Kong, 1965


Lui Lam, physicist and humanist, obtained his BS (with First Class Honors) from the University of Hong Kong, MS from University of British Columbia, and PhD from Columbia University (with thesis done at Bell Labs under Phil Platzman). He is a professor emeritus at San Jose State University, California and recipient of SJSU's 2017 Distinguished Service Award, and Guest Professor at both the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) and the China Association for Science and Technology (CAST).

Lam invented bowlics (1982), one of three existing types of liquid crystals in the world; active walks (1992), a new paradigm in complex systems; and two new disciplines--histophysics (2002) and science matters (2007/2008). He published 16 books and over 180 scientific papers; the books include Introduction to Nonlinear Physics (1997), Nonlinear Physics for Beginners (1998), This Pale Blue Dot (2004), Science Matters (2008), Arts: A Science Matter (2011), and All About Science: Philosophy, History, Sociology & Communication (2014).

He is the founder of the International Liquid Crystal Society (1990); cofounder of the Chinese Liquid Crystal Society (1980); founder and editor of two book series, Science Matters (World Scientific) and Partially Ordered Systems (Springer). His current research is in scimat (science matters), complex systems, and philosophy; scimat website: Email: More...