Robert S. Langer, ScD

Position: Director & Scientific Advisor, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Robert S. Langer is one of 12 Institute Professors at MIT; being an Institute Professor is the highest honor that can be awarded to a faculty member. Dr. Langer has written more than 1,500 articles. He also has over 1,400 issued and pending patents worldwide.  Dr. Langer’s patents have been licensed or sublicensed to over 400 pharmaceutical, chemical, biotechnology and medical device companies. Dr. Langer has founded more than 40 companies, including Moderna, that are valued at more than $200 billion. He is the most cited engineer in history (h-index 300 with over 363,000 citations according to Google Scholar).

He served as a member of the United States Food and Drug Administration’s SCIENCE Board, the FDA’s highest advisory board, from 1995 — 2002 and as its Chairman from 1999-2002.

Dr. Langer has received over 220 major awards.  He is one of 3 living individuals to have received both the United States National Medal of Science (2006) and the United States National Medal of Technology and Innovation (2011). He also received the 1996 Gairdner Foundation International Award, the 2002 Charles Stark Draper Prize, considered the equivalent of the Nobel Prize for engineers, the 2008 Millennium Prize, the world’s largest technology prize, the 2012 Priestley Medal, the highest award of the American Chemical Society, the 2013 Wolf Prize in Chemistry, the 2014 Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences and the 2014 Kyoto Prize and the 2022 BBVA Foundation of Frontiers of Knowledge Award. In 2015, Dr. Langer received the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering.

Dr. Langer has received 37 honorary doctorates including honorary degrees from both Harvard and Yale. He received his Bachelor’s Degree from Cornell University in 1970 and his Sc.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1974, both in Chemical Engineering.