Christopher Jarzynski

Christopher Jarzynski - Chair


Christopher Jarzynski has been a faculty member at the University of Maryland, College Park, since 2006. He is currently a Distinguished University Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, with additional appointments in the Institute for Physical Science and Technology (IPST) and the Department of Physics. From 2014 to 2019 he was the Director of IPST, and from 2019 to 2020 he was the Interim Director of the Chemical Physics PhD Program. Before moving to Maryland, he spent ten years at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, first as a postdoctoral researcher and later as a technical staff member.

Jarzynski’s research interests include theoretical and computational work at the interface of physics, chemistry and biology, with an emphasis on nonequilibrium phenomena and the application of thermodynamic principles to microscopic systems. At UMD he has taught courses ranging from introductory chemistry to graduate thermodynamics, and has developed a new course on nonequilibrium statistical mechanics. He has mentored undergraduates, graduate students and postdocs. Eleven students have completed their PhD’s with Jarzynski as their advisor or co-advisor.

Jarzynski received his bachelor’s degree from Princeton University, and his PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, both in Physics. He spent a year in Warsaw, Poland on a Fulbright Fellowship. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and an elected member of both the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences.