Selected Awards and Honors

Dr. Hughes is an elected member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the U.S. National Academy of Engineering, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Royal Society of London, the Austrian Academy of Sciences (Section for Mathematics and the Physical Sciences), the Istituto Lombardo Accademia di Scienze e Lettere (Mathematics Section), and the Academy of Medicine, Engineering and Science of Texas.

Dr. Hughes is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), the U.S. Association for Computational Mechanics (USACM), the International Association for Computational Mechanics (IACM), the American Academy of Mechanics (AAM), the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM), and the Engineering Mechanics Institute of ASCE.  He has been elected to Distinguished Membership in ASCE, the highest honor ASCE bestows.  

He is co-editor of the international journal Computer Methods in Applied Mechanics and Engineering, a founder and past President of USACM and IACM, past Chairman of the Applied Mechanics Division of ASME, and past Chairman of the U.S. National Committee on Theoretical and Applied Mechanics (USNC/TAM).

He has been awarded the Walter L. Huber Civil Engineering Research Prize and von Karman Medal from ASCE, the von Neumann Medal from USACM, the Gauss-Newton Medal from IACM, the Computational Mechanics Award from the Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers (JSME), the Grand Prize from the Japan Society of Computational Engineering and Science (JSCES), the Computational Mechanics Award from the Japanese Association for Computational Mechanics (JACM), the Humboldt Research Award for Senior Scientists from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, the Wilhem Exner Medal from the Austrian Association für SME (Öesterreichischer Gewerbeverein, OGV), the International Scientific Career Award from the Argentinian Association for Computational Mechanics (AMCA), the SIAM/ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) Prize in Computational Science and Engineering, the Southeastern Universities Research Association (SURA) Distinguished Scientist Award, the Zienkiewicz Medal from the Polish Association for Computational Mechanics, and the Timoshenko, Worcester Reed Warner, and Melville Medals from ASME, as well as its highest honor, the ASME Medal.

Upon graduation from UC Berkeley, Dr. Hughes received the Bernard Freidman Memorial Prize in Applied Mathematics, the only engineer to have ever done so.  At Stanford University, he received the Dean’s Award for Academic Accomplishment.  At the University of Texas at Austin he has received the Joe J. King Professional Engineering Achievement Award, the Billy and Claude R. Hocott Distinguished Centennial Engineering Research Award, and the University Co-op Career Research Excellence Award.  He has also received the Alumni Achievement Award from Pratt Institute.

He has received honorary doctorates from the Université catholique de Louvain (Belgium), the University of Pavia (Italy), the University of Padua (Italy), the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (Trondheim), Northwestern University (Evanston), and the University of A Coruña (Spain).  

He held the Cattedra Galileiana (Galileo Galilei Chair), Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa, Italy, in 1999, and the Eshbach Professorship, Northwestern University, in 2000.

The Special Achievement Award for Young Investigators in Applied Mechanics is an award given annually by the Applied Mechanics Division of ASME.  In 2008 this award was renamed the Thomas J.R. Hughes Young Investigator Award.

In 2012 the Computational Fluid Mechanics Award of the United States Association for Computational Mechanics was renamed the Thomas J.R. Hughes Medal.


Dr. Hughes has delivered numerous invited, named, plenary and keynote lectures at universities, laboratories, and national and international congresses.  He has delivered multiple plenary lectures at World Congresses of Computational Mechanics and United States National Congresses of Computational Mechanics.  He also has been a plenary lecturer at the International Congress of Mathematicians.  This congress, held every four years, is the largest and most important event in the field of mathematics and being invited to deliver a plenary lecture is a major distinction. Dr. Hughes was selected to represent the field of Numerical Analysis at ICM 2010, the International Congress of Mathematicians, International Mathematics Union, Hyderabad, India, August 19-27, 2010.  In the over one hundred year history of the congress, Dr. Hughes was only the second engineer to have been invited to deliver a plenary lecture.  The first was Theodore von Karman in 1928. 

© Tom Hughes 2019