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Two Named AAAS Fellows

Professors recognized by international science society for distinguished contributions
  • Thomas McDade chosen for ‘contributions to the field of biological anthropology’
  • Adilson Motter chosen for ‘contributions to fields of complex systems and nonlinear dynamics’

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Two Northwestern University faculty members have been elected fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest general scientific society. 

Thomas W. McDade and Adilson E. Motter, professors in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, are being honored for their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. New fellows will be honored Feb. 13 at the 2016 AAAS Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.

McDade, the Carlos Montezuma Professor of Anthropology and faculty fellow at the Institute for Policy Research (IPR), was chosen by AAAS for his distinguished contributions to the field of biological anthropology, particularly for biocultural perspectives on human development, human ecological immunity, human biology, field and laboratory methods. 

He specializes in human population biology. McDade’s work is primarily concerned with the dynamic interrelationships among society, biology and health over the life course, with an emphasis on life course approaches to stress and the human immune system.

McDade also is the director of the Laboratory for Human Biology Research and of Cells to Society (C2S): The Center on Social Disparities and Health, which is part of IPR, as well as the director of the Graduate Cluster in Society, Biology, and Health.

Motter, the Charles E. and Emma H. Morrison Professor of Physics and Astronomy, was chosen for his distinguished contributions to the fields of complex systems and nonlinear dynamics, particularly for advances in the network modeling and control of collective dynamics in complex physical and biophysical systems.

He is an expert in network dynamics. Motter studies how information and perturbations propagate through complex networks and how they shape the collective behavior of systems as diverse as physical, biochemical and technological networks. 

Motter is chair-elect of the American Physical Society’s Topical Group on Statistical and Nonlinear Physics. He also has long been an executive committee member of the Northwestern Institute on Complex Systems (NICO) and currently serves as editor of Chaos, an interdisciplinary journal of nonlinear science from the American Institute of Physics.

AAAS is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing science around the world. It publishes the journal Science, as well as newsletters, books and reports. In 2015, AAAS elected 347 of its members as fellows.