Shi was born in Ningbo, Zhejiang Province on December 5, 1933. 1955, He graduated from the Ningbo Middle School. He first studied mathematics at the Department of Mathematics, Zhejiang University, under the guidance of Professor Su Buqing. Shi then was transferred to Fudan University together with Su Buqing.
After graduating from the department of mathematics of Fudan University in 1955, Shi became one of first Chinese visiting scholars in Soviet Union, and studied computational mathematics at the Steklov Institute of Mathematics in Moscow from 1956 till 1960.
Upon returning in 1960, Shi served in the institute of computational technology of CAS. From 1965 to 1986, he was a professor in the Department of Mathematics of University of Science and Technology of China. From 1987 to 1991, he became the director of computation center of CAS. From 1997, Shi served as the Dean of School of Science, Shanghai Jiao Tong University. He is now a research fellow of computation center of CAS, and the director of national key laboratory of scientific and engineering computation. Shi currently is a vice-dean of College of Sciences, Zhejiang University, and a researcher at the Center of Mathematical Sciences, Zhejiang University.
- Chairman of Academic Committee, the State Key Laboratory of Scientific and Engineering Computing (LSEC)
- Chairman of Academic Committee, the Institute of Computational Mathematics and Scientific/Engineering Computing (ICMSEC)
- Chief Scientist, National Key Project for Fundamental Research
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