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Geoffrey B. West
Geoffrey West is Distinguished Professor and former President of the Santa Fe Institute (SFI) and Associate Fellow of the Said Business School, Oxford University. Prior to joining SFI in 2003, he was leader and founder of the high energy physics group at Los Alamos National Laboratory, where he is one of only approximately ten Senior Fellows. He received his BA from Cambridge University in 1961 and a doctorate in physics from Stanford University in 1966, where he returned in 1970 to join the faculty. He became SFI President in 2005. West is a theoretical physicist whose primary interests have been in fundamental questions in physics and biology, ranging from understanding the elementary particles, their interactions and cosmological implications to the origins of universal scaling laws and a unifying quantitative framework of biology. His research areas in biology have included metabolic rate, growth, aging & death, sleep, cancer, and ecosystem dynamics. His recent work has focused on developing an underlying theory of cities, companies and long-term global sustainability; problems include rates of growth and innovation, the accelerating pace of life, and why companies die, yet cities survive. He is the author of several books and a Fellow of the American Physical Society. Among recent awards are the Mercer Prize from the Ecological Society of America; the Weldon Prize for Mathematical Biology and the Glenn Award for Aging research. His work on social organisations was selected as a breakthrough idea of 2007 by Harvard Business Review and, in 2006, he was selected for Time magazine's list of "100 Most Influential People in the World".