Mark Bowick

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Mark Bowick
Bowick in 2018
Mark John Bowick

CitizenshipU.S. and New Zealand
EducationUniversity of Canterbury (BSc)
Caltech (MSc, PhD)
Known forCondensed Matter Theory and High Energy Theoretical Physics
AwardsGravity Research Foundation Essay Competition (1986)
APS Fellow (2004)
AAAS Fellow (2022)
Scientific career
InstitutionsUniversity of California, Santa Barbara
Syracuse University
Yale University
ThesisRadiative Mass Structure in Unified Models and Fermions in the Desert (1983)
Doctoral advisorPierre Ramond

Mark John Bowick (born 1957) is a theoretical physicist in condensed matter theory and high energy physics. He is the deputy director of the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a Visiting Distinguished Professor of Physics in UCSB's Physics Department.[1][2]

Early life and education[edit]

Bowick was born in Rotorua, New Zealand, and earned his bachelor's degree, B.Sc. (Hons.), at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch.[3] In 1983, he received his Ph.D. in theoretical physics from the California Institute of Technology, where he held an Earle C. Anthony Graduate Fellowship.[4]

Professional career[edit]

Bowick then spent three years at Yale University as the research associate of their Sloane Physics Lab's "Particle Theory Group,"[5][6] followed by a two-year postdoctoral position at the Center for Theoretical Physics, at MIT.[7][8]

He was awarded first prize in the 1986 Gravity Research Foundation Essay Competition.[9] In 1987, he joined the faculty of the physics department at Syracuse University,[10] where he was granted an Outstanding Junior Investigator award, from the United States Department of Energy, for the years 1987 to 1994.[11] At Syracuse, Bowick served as assistant and associate professor from 1987 to 1998, was promoted to full professor of physics in 1998, and went on to become director of the Soft Matter Program from 2011 to 2016.[12]

In August 2016, the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, at the University of California, Santa Barbara, invited Bowick to join as deputy director and visiting distinguished professor of physics.[1]


Bowick's research interests include symmetry breaking,[13] the interplay of order and geometry,[14] topological defects,[15] building blocks for supramolecular self-assembly,[16] membrane statistical mechanics,[17] shaped structures,[18] and common themes in condensed matter and particle physics.[19]

Since 2002, his career has been split between high-energy physics and condensed matter physics, with ongoing research support by the National Science Foundation.[20]

Honors and awards[edit]

Syracuse honored Bowick with two commendations:[24] the Chancellor's Citation for Exceptional Academic Achievement in 2006,[25] and the William Wasserstrom Prize for Excellence in Graduate Teaching and Advising in 2009.[26] He was also named the Joel Dorman Steele Professor of Physics in 2013.[27]

Personal life[edit]

Bowick is married to theoretical physicist M. Cristina Marchetti. They have two adult children.

In 2016, while director of Syracuse University's Soft Matter Program, Bowick commissioned composer Andrew Waggoner to write music for their Active And Smart Matter Conference: A New Frontier for Science & Engineering.[28] The world premiere of this eclectic composition, entitled Hexacorda Mollia, was performed by the JACK Quartet on June 22, 2016.[29]

Selected publications[edit]


  1. ^ a b "KITP / Mark Bowick".
  2. ^ "UCSB Physics Department", Wikipedia, 2019-01-05, retrieved 2021-01-12
  3. ^ Barrett, Michelle (1983). "Saturday Morning Physics to explore structures of nature on Oct. 23". Syracuse University. Retrieved 31 March 2021.
  4. ^ Bowick, Mark John (1983). "Radiative Mass Structure in Unified Models and Fermions in the Desert". California Institute of Technology. Retrieved 26 February 2021.
  5. ^ Bowick, Mark J.; Wijewardhana, L. C. R. (1985). "Superstrings at High Temperature". Physical Review Letters. 54 (23): 2485–2488. Bibcode:1985PhRvL..54.2485B. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.54.2485. PMID 10031355.
  6. ^ "Proceedings of the Yale Theoretical Advanced Study Institute". High Energy Physics. doi:10.1142/9789814542425.
  7. ^ Bowick, M.J.; Rajeev, S.G. (1987). "The holomorphic geometry of closed bosonic string theory and Diff S1/S1". Nuclear Physics B. 293: 348–384. Bibcode:1987NuPhB.293..348B. doi:10.1016/0550-3213(87)90076-9.
  8. ^ Bowick, M.J.; Rajeev, S.G. (1988). "Anomalies as curvature in complex geometry". Nuclear Physics B. 296 (4): 1007–1033. Bibcode:1988NuPhB.296.1007B. doi:10.1016/0550-3213(88)90408-7.
  9. ^ a b "Gravity Research Foundation". Gravity Research Foundation. Retrieved 2021-01-13.
  10. ^ "Mark Bowick". College of Arts & Sciences at Syracuse University. Retrieved 2021-01-12.
  11. ^ a b "Prior Year HEP Early Career Awar... U.S. DOE Office of Science (SC)". 2010-07-07. Retrieved 2021-01-13.
  12. ^ Lissner, Michelle. "Soft & Living Matter: SLM@SU". Retrieved 2021-01-13.
  13. ^ Appelquist, Thomas W.; Bowick, Mark; Karabali, Dimitra; Wijewardhana, L. C. R. (1986). "Spontaneous chiral-symmetry breaking in three-dimensional QED". Physical Review D. 33 (12): 3704–3713. Bibcode:1986PhRvD..33.3704A. doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.33.3704. PMID 9956603.
  14. ^ Bowick, Mark J.; Nelson, David R.; Travesset, Alex (2000). "Interacting topological defects on frozen topographies". Physical Review B. 62 (13): 8738–8751. arXiv:cond-mat/9911379. Bibcode:2000PhRvB..62.8738B. doi:10.1103/PhysRevB.62.8738. S2CID 11547273.
  15. ^ Giomi, Luca; Bowick, Mark J.; Ma, Xu; Marchetti, M. Cristina (2013). "Defect Annihilation and Proliferation in Active Nematics". Physical Review Letters. 110 (22): 228101. arXiv:1303.4720. Bibcode:2013PhRvL.110v8101G. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.110.228101. PMID 23767749.
  16. ^ Serafin, Francesco; Bowick, Mark J.; Nagel, Sidney R. (2018). "Topology and ground-state degeneracy of tetrahedral smectic vesicles". The European Physical Journal E. 41 (12): 143. arXiv:1807.05988. doi:10.1140/epje/i2018-11755-y. PMID 30552497. S2CID 54630993.
  17. ^ Yllanes, David; Bhabesh, Sourav S.; Nelson, David R.; Bowick, Mark J. (2017). "Thermal crumpling of perforated two-dimensional sheets". Nature Communications. 8 (1): 1381. arXiv:1705.07379. Bibcode:2017NatCo...8.1381Y. doi:10.1038/s41467-017-01551-y. PMC 5680302. PMID 29123095.
  18. ^ Xing, Xiangjun; Shin, Homin; Bowick, Mark J.; Yao, Zhenwei; Jia, Lin; Li, Min-Hui (2012). "Morphology of nematic and smectic vesicles". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 109 (14): 5202–5206. arXiv:1108.4763. Bibcode:2012PNAS..109.5202X. doi:10.1073/pnas.1115684109. PMC 3325697. PMID 22431595.
  19. ^ Bowick, Mark J.; Chandar, L.; Schiff, E. A.; Srivastava, Ajit M. (1994). "The Cosmological Kibble Mechanism in the Laboratory: String Formation in Liquid Crystals". Science. 263 (5149): 943–945. arXiv:hep-ph/9208233. Bibcode:1994Sci...263..943B. doi:10.1126/science.263.5149.943. PMID 17758635. S2CID 14074732.
  20. ^ "Mark Bowick at NSF". Retrieved 2021-01-31.
  21. ^ Byrnes, Edward (1 December 2004). "SU's Bowick elected to fellowship in American Physical Society". Syracuse University News. Retrieved 20 March 2022.
  22. ^ "APS Fellow Archive". Retrieved 2021-01-21.
  23. ^ "2022 AAAS Fellows". American Association for the Advancement of Science (Press release). October 2022. Retrieved 1 February 2023.
  24. ^ "Mark Bowick profile". Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics. Retrieved 2021-01-21.
  25. ^ "University Archives | Syracuse University Libraries". Retrieved 2021-01-13.
  26. ^ "William Wasserstrom Prize – Graduate – Syracuse University". Retrieved 2021-01-13.
  27. ^ Enslin, Rob (18 October 2013). "SU's Mark Bowick to Be Honored as New Steele Professor Oct. 31". SU News. Syracuse University. Retrieved 25 February 2021.
  28. ^ "2016 Active and Smart Matter". Retrieved 2021-01-13.
  29. ^ Hexacorda Mollia by Andrew Waggoner - A Unique Commission, retrieved 2021-01-13

External links[edit]