Avi Loeb is a theoretical physicist and the Frank B. Baird Jr. Professor of Science at Harvard University. He is the Director of the Institute for Theory and Computation at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. He received a PhD in Physics from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel, and was a long-term member of the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton.
Loeb was the Founding Director of Harvard’s Black Hole Initiative, and served as Chair of the Department of Astronomy from 2011 to 2020. He led the first international project supported by the Strategic Defense Initiative, and is the Head of Harvard’s Galileo Project. He is a former member of the President’s Council of Advisors on Space and Technology at the White House. Loeb is also a former chair of the Board on Physics and Astronomy of the National Academies from 2018 to 2021. In 2012, TIME magazine selected Loeb as one of the 25 most influential people in space. In 2020, From The Grapevine selected Loeb among the 14 most inspiring Israelies of the last decade.
Loeb is the bestselling author of Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth, along with 7 other books and 800 papers. He explores topics such as black holes, the future of the Universe, and the search for extraterrestrial life.