David E. Shaw

David E. Shaw


Senior Research Fellow, Center for Computational Biology and Bioinformatics


Center for Computational Biology and Bioinformatics


(212) 849-0880

David E. Shaw is chief scientist of D. E. Shaw Research and a senior research fellow at the Center for Computational Biology and Bioinformatics. He received his PhD from Stanford University in 1980, served on the faculty of the Department of Computer Science at Columbia until 1986, and founded the D. E. Shaw Group in 1988. Since 2001, he has devoted his time to hands-on research in the field of computational biochemistry.

Dr. Shaw’s research interests include the design of novel algorithms and machine architectures for high-speed molecular dynamics (MD) simulations of proteins and other biological macromolecules. His group designed and constructed a specialized supercomputer called Anton, which executes such simulations orders of magnitude faster than was previously possible, along with a number of software tools and techniques that facilitate their execution and analysis. Shaw uses long MD simulations to study structural changes in underlying biological phenomena that occur on time scales far in excess of those previously accessible to computational study. His group has investigated, for example, the mechanisms of certain cellular receptors, transport proteins, and enzymes relevant to the understanding and potential treatment of cancer, diabetes, and other diseases.

Dr. Shaw was appointed to the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology by President Clinton in 1994, and again by President Obama in 2009. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, and is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.