Membership Overview

Members are elected to the National Academy of Sciences in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. Membership is a widely accepted mark of excellence in science and is considered one of the highest honors that a scientist can receive. Current NAS membership totals approximately 2,380 members and nearly 485 foreign associates, of whom approximately 190 have received Nobel prizes.

Becoming a Member

Because membership is achieved by election, there is no membership application process. Although many names are suggested informally, only Academy members may submit formal nominations. Consideration of a candidate begins with his or her nomination, followed by an extensive and careful vetting process that results in a final ballot at the Academy's annual meeting in April each year. Currently, a maximum of 84 members may be elected annually. Members must be U.S. citizens; non-citizens are elected as foreign associates, with a maximum of 21 elected annually.

More about our Members

Member Profiles  
Searchable profiles of Academy members by name, institution, scientific discipline, and keyword


In Memoriam  
Announcements of recently deceased Academy members

Selected Videos  
A compilation of members' talks from and our own Distinctive Voices lecture series


Biographical Memoirs  
Biographies of deceased Academy members, providing a unique view of the history of science in America

First-person accounts of Academy members' lives, influences, and research (podcast series)




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