Buckley Prize Receives Major Donation from Taiwanese Company

The HTC-VIA Group of Taiwan has made a donation of $140,000 to support and enhance APS’s Oliver E. Buckley Condensed Matter Prize. The Buckley Prize is the oldest APS prize, and one of the most prestigious. The award is given to researchers who have made significant contributions to the field of condensed matter physics. Until this year, the stipend of the prize had been$10,000, but with the new donation, it will double to \$20,000 for the next seven years.

The donation was made possible by Cher Wang, the founder and chair of HTC and VIA Technologies, and her husband Wenchi Chen, CEO of VIA technologies.

“The American Physical Society is thrilled with the generosity of Cher Wang and Wenchi Chen in reinvigorating the Buckley Prize, enabling the award amount to double,” said Sam Bader of Argonne National Laboratory, former chair of the Division of Condensed Matter Physics. “The Buckley Prize is a premier prize of the APS. Over the years its ranks have included as many as sixteen who also became Nobel Prize winners.”

Professor Nai-Chang Yeh of Caltech first reached out to the couple, who are ranked by Forbes as amongst the top ten richest people in Taiwan. VIA Technologies is a major integrated circuit and computer chip manufacturer, while HTC manufactures smartphones and tablet computers.

“They very much appreciate the high status of the recipients who have received this prize, and more so that it is very much in line with what their company does,” said Darlene Logan, APS director of development.

The prize was established in 1952 by AT&T Bell Labs in honor of their president, Oliver E. Buckley, who had retired the previous year.

With the new donation, the HTC-VIA Group will also be named as the official co-sponsor of the award. Also, in recognition of their contribution, Wang and Chen have been invited to travel to the APS March Meeting in Baltimore.

“They will be invited to come and present the prize with the APS President,” Logan said.

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Editor: Alan Chodos