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The Winter 2019 EPS Emmy Noether Distinction is awarded to Cristiane Morais Smith from the Institute for Theoretical Physics, Utrecht University, the Netherlands, and board member of the Delta Institute for Theoretical Physics. The jury members decided to attribute the Emmy Noether Distinction to Prof. Cristiane Morais Smith “for her outstanding contributions to the theory of condensed matter systems and ultracold atoms to unveil novel quantum states of matter”.

Prof. Cristiane Morais Smith

Prof. Dr. Cristiane Morais Smith was born in 1964 in Brazil, where she did her Bachelor and Master studies in Theoretical Physics. The largest part of her PhD was performed at ETH Zurich, in the field of quantum dissipative systems. After her PhD in 2004, she went for a 6 year C1-position at the University of Hamburg, Germany. Before the end of that period, she returned to Switzerland, to the University of Fribourg, where she was first a Maitre Assistante and then an Associate Professor after being awarded the Professeur Boursier of the Swiss National Science Foundation in 2001.

In 2004, she accepted a Chair in Condensed Matter Physics at the University of Utrecht, the Netherlands. She was awarded the VICI Fellowship of the Dutch Organisation for Research in 2008 and the Dresselhaus Prize from Germany in 2016. She received a Special Visiting Professor Award “Science without Borders” from the Brazilian Government from 2013-2016 and a HEFE (High-End Foreigner Expert) of the Chinese Government in 2014 and 2015 to visit the Wilczek Quantum Center. She is currently a Fellow and a member of the International Advisory Council of the T.D. Lee Institute in Shanghai and an invited member of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. 

Prof. Dr. Cristiane Morais Smith

Cristiane Morais Smith leads a research group in Strongly Correlated Systems at the Institute for Theoretical Physics of Utrecht University, working on low-dimensional systems, ranging from condensed matter to cold atoms. Her group pioneered the development of a thermodynamic description of topological insulators and superconductors, as well as the use of a projected quantum electrodynamics formulation to investigate topological phases driven by interactions. In the last years, her group has been playing an important role in the development of electronic quantum simulators and metamaterials in collaboration with experimentalists in Utrecht.