Lance Li is currently Director in Corporate Research at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company. He is also entitled as the SHARP professor at University of New South Wales and adjunct professor at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology. He received his BSc and an MSc in chemistry at National Taiwan University. He obtained his PhD of condensed matter physics at Oxford University in 2006. He was an Assistant Professor in Nanyang Technological University from 2006 to 2009. Since 2010, he has become an Associate Professor at Academia Sinica. He joined KAUST in 2014 and became a full professor in 2016. He has obtained the Humboldt Research Fellowship for Experienced Researchers and Career Development Award in 2011 and 2010 respectively. He has also received Academia Sinica Research Awards and Wu Ta-Yu Research Awards (National Science Council, Taiwan) in 2013. He is recognized as the 2018 & 2019 highly cited scholar (Clarivate) and Universal Scientific Education and Research Network (USERN) 1% top scientist.
Li has been active in participating at MRS meetings as an invited speaker in 2012-2015, 2018 and 2020. He also organized a MRS symposium NM2: properties of 2D materials and heterostructures in 2016. He was the Guest Editor of MRS J. Mater. Research for the focus issue on Two-Dimensional Heterostructure Materials (2015). He is also involved in other societies and helped on 17 international conferences as conference chair, program chair or international scientific committee, including ECS meeting, International Conference on Materials for Advanced Technologies ICMAT, International Conference on 2D Materials, Recent Progress on Graphene Research (RPGR), ECI Carbon based materials and devices, IEEE International Nanoelectronics Conference and so on. Additionally, he serves on the editorial boards of ACS Nano (ACS), FlatChem (Elsevier), Scientific Reports (Nature Springer) and Frontiers in Nanoenergy Technologies and Materials (EPFL). Li has authored over 360 refereed scientific papers and > 40 US patents.
Li took an important role in the research of two-dimensional (2D) transition metal dichalcogenides (TMD). Lance first demonstrated in 2012 how to grow large-area 2D TMD monolayer such as MoS2 and WSe2 using chemical vapor deposition (CVD) with metal oxides as precursors. With such crystalline samples, stacking 2D layers to form large-area heterojunctions becomes possible, giving strong hands to the exploration of new physics in electronic structures and optical measurements in van der Waals stacking layers. He has also discovered different growth technologies including the controllable edge-expitaxial growth of atomically sharp p-n junction between p-WSe2 and n-MoS2 for future monolayer electronics. He has further realized the concept of “molecular surgery”, where the atomic atoms can be replaced by other atoms using a controllable method, creating a new path to construct new materials which do not exist in nature. Li joined TSMC in 2017 and he is now concentrating on making fundamental breakthroughs for integrating 2D materials on Si chips, where the new materials combined with new device architecture stand at a great chance to realize electronics for advanced technology nodes.
MRS has been very successful in striving excellence of research through creating environments for interdisciplinary cooperation. It is definitely very important to keep maintaining the high standard service for the materials research society. I believe the role of the MRS board is to find innovative ways of breaking non-scientific boundaries to further define a better future for the research society.
To achieve the goal, I believe MRS could consider the followings
- MRS has already set up the prestigious meeting series which have attracted top researchers and impactful talks to the MRS meetings. In parallel, MRS may be able to do better in promoting the impacts of its publications including J. Mater. Research, and Materials Bulletin. Actually, many top-quality papers from materials scientists were submitted to ACS/APS/RSC/IOP for publications. The board could consider to review the status and make corresponding suggestions for enhancing the impacts of the MRS publications.
- MRS is a global professional society for researchers to share findings and stimulate ideas. Therefore, the reduction of communication and collaboration barriers among researchers from different regions or countries is critical. However, the impact of COVID-19 or other viruses on travel restriction may last for many years from now. MRS could consider to strengthen the operation and function of the MRS branches in different geographical areas to enhance information and resources sharing. Alliance among branches in geographical proximity could be formed to have regional meetings. The hybrid of virtual and regional meetings could help to reduce the communication barriers and the impact from travel restriction.
- Our future depends not only on scientific breakthroughs but also on the advancement of technologies. The MRS should continue to find innovative ways to interact with industries. Industry-oriented sessions and strategic discussions with industries may be included the main or regional MRS meetings. In addition to those existing materials industries, MRS may also need to explore the possibility to work with the industries which may adopt emerging materials; thereby encouraging interaction with mutual benefit.