Professor Michael Hoffmann received a BA degree from Northwestern University in 1968, a PhD degree from Brown University in 1973, and a post-doctoral fellowship from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences at the California Institute of Technology from 1973 to 1975. He has been a Professor of Environmental Chemistry since 1975. From 1975 to 1980, he was a member of the faculty at the University of Minnesota, and since 1980 as a member of the professorial faculty at Caltech. From 2002 to 2009, he served the Institute as Dean of Graduate Studies. He has published more than 300 peer-reviewed professional papers and is the holder of 7 patents. His research over 40 years has spanned the subject areas of atmospheric chemistry, chemical kinetics, catalytic oxidation and reduction, photochemistry, photocatalysis, nanotechnology, sonochemistry, photo-electrochemistry, pulsed-power plasma chemistry, environmental water chemistry, and microbiology.
Prof. Hoffmann has been recognized by the Web of Science as one of the most highly cited researchers in engineering in the world. He was awarded the Alexander von Humboldt Prize in 1991 for his research and teaching in environmental chemistry and the American Chemical Society Award for Creative Advances in Environmental Science and Technology in 2001. During the 2010 academic year, he was on sabbatical leave as a Distinguished Chair Professor of Atmospheric Sciences, Chemistry, and Environmental Engineering at the National Taiwan University. He is a Member of the National Academy of Engineering.