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Professor Chiara Daraio

Academic Council Member

As a Member of the Schmidt Science Fellows Academic Council, Dr. Chiara Daraio mentors Current and Senior Fellows, providing them with advice on their research and career development.

Chiara is the G. Bradford Jones Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Physics at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). Her research focuses on developing new materials with advanced mechanical and sensing properties, for application in medical devices, robotics, and aerospace. For example, her research group developed new materials and methods for acoustic imaging and thermal sensing in medicine and health monitoring. Her technical expertise bridges mechanics, materials science, condensed matter physics, mathematical modelling, and nanofabrication. Chiara brings her academic and industrial consulting experience to the Fellows, for their professional development and growth.

Chiara completed her undergraduate degree at the Università Politecnica delle Marche in Ancona, Italy, before she embarked on graduate study at the University of California, San Diego. She became an Assistant Professor at Caltech in 2006 and continues to hold positions there today. Between 2013 and 2016, she was also Chair of Mechanics and Materials at ETH Zurich in Switzerland. Chiara has received numerous accolades, including a Sloan Research Fellowship, a National Science Foundation CAREER Award, a US Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award, and a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers.

Chiara serves in the Editorial Board of Science (AAAS). She is committed to mentoring and educating a diverse workforce in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. She participated for many years in the women-mentoring-women program and led a number of initiatives to increase diversity in STEM. Chiara has also served for multiple years as an Academic Reviewer in the Schmidt Science Fellows Selection process.