David A. Edwards

David A. Edwards

  • Gordon McKay Professor of the Practice of Idea Translation
  • Core Member, Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering
  • Founder and Director, Le Laboratoire in Paris, France
  • Faculty Associate, Center for Nanoscale Systems

Profile

David is a biomedical engineer and writer actively involved in the translation of ideas from the university through novel medical technology, and the writing, performing and visual arts. His scientific research concerns the mathematical design of novel physical parameters that allow nanostructured materials to efficiently deliver drugs and vaccines to the lungs and other human organs, with a special focus on infectious diseases in developing world nations. Current work in his laboratory includes the development of novel antibiotic therapies for tuberculosis and a new delivery platform for needle-free childhood vaccines.

Medicine in Need, or MEND, is an international not-for-profit organization that translates research from David's lab to clinical practice in South Africa and other developing world environments. He lives with his wife and three sons in Boston and Paris. David is the co-author of numerous scientific publications in the fields of fluid mechanics, interfacial transport phenomena, drug delivery, and aerosol science.

He has published two textbooks (Interfacial Tranport Properties and Rheology, 1991, and Macrotransport Processes, 1993) and is the author of numerous patents in the area of drug delivery, with a special focus on novel medical aerosols.

A member of the National Academy of Engineering since 2001, David is a three-time recipient of the Ebert Prize of the American Pharmaceutical Association (1996, 1997, 1999), and the winner of various national and international awards including the Theodor Herzl Award of the Jersusalem Fund and the Municipality of Jerusalem, the Smoluchowski Award of the European Aerosol Association, and the Professional Progress Award of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers.

David's artistic work includes his founding and direction of Le Laboratoire, a new innovation space in downtown Paris, where artists and scientists perform collaborative experiments. The outcomes of these experiments are exhibited to the public in the form of contemporary art and design installations. Since its opening in October 2007, Laboratoire exhibitions have attracted broad international attention, with exhibition themes ranging from contemporary art, to industrial design, to humanitarian advocacy.

The principal of Le Laboratoire as an artscience catalyst for innovation is described in David's recent book, Artscience: Creativity in the post-Google Generation (Harvard 2008), which draws on the experience of many contemporary innovators in Boston and internationally. His French novel, Niche (Ecole de Beaux Arts de Paris), co-written with novelist Jay Cantor, is the first of a series based on creation at Le Laboratoire. For his work in the arts in France David was recently made a Chevalier dans l'ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture. David is also the co-founder with his wife of the urban youth art Boston-based Cloud Foundation.

He is also the founder of Advanced Inhalation Research, or AIR, now part of Alkermes, Inc., and Pulmatrix.

Contact Information

Office:322 Pierce Hall
Email:dedwards@seas.harvard.edu
Office Phone:(617) 294-9522
Assistant:Kate Zirpolo Flynn
Assistant Office:Pierce Hall 314
Assistant Phone:(617) 496-1460

Primary Teaching Area

Bioengineering

Positions & Employment

Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

  • Gordon McKay Professor of the Practice of Biomedical Engineering

Other Experience & Professional Membership

  • National Academy of Engineering, 2001
  • French National Academy of Engineering, 2008

Honors

  • Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres of the French Ministry of Culture (2008)
  • Ebert Prize of the American Pharmaceutical Association (1996, 1997, 1999)
  • Theodor Herzl Award of the Jersusalem Fund and the Municipality of Jerusalem
  • Smoluchowski Award of the European Aerosol Association
  • Professional Progress Award of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers