James Tour

Professor of Chemistry, of Computer Science, and of Materials Science and Nano-Engineering

James Tour is the T. T. and W. F. Chao Professor of Chemistry, Professor of Computer Science, and Professor of Materials Science and Nano-Engineering at Rice University. A synthetic organic chemist, he received his BS in Chemistry from Syracuse University, his PhD in synthetic organic and organometallic chemistry from Purdue University, and postdoctoral training in synthetic organic chemistry at the University of Wisconsin and Stanford University. He has served on the faculty of the University of South Carolina and as a visiting scholar at Harvard University.

Tour has over 700 research publications and over 130 patent families.

He was inducted into the National Academy of Inventors in 2015 and was listed in “The World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds” by Thomson Reuters in 2014. He has been named “Scientist of the Year” by R&D Magazine and was ranked one of the Top 10 chemists in the world over the past decade by a Thomson Reuters citations per publication index survey in 2009. The same year he was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). He won the Feynman Prize in Experimental Nanotechnology in 2008, the NASA Space Act Award in 2008 for his development of carbon nanotube reinforced elastomers, and the Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award from the American Chemical Society for his achievements in organic chemistry in 2007.

Archives

Thermodynamics and the Origin of Life

Brian Miller Talks with James Tour on the Science & Faith Podcast
In this podcast, Dr. James Tour and Dr. Brian Miller discuss science and faith, including a presentation by Dr. Miller, showing his extensive expertise in the application of thermodynamics and information theory to the problem of the origin of life. Dr. Miller is Research Coordinator for the Center for Science and Culture at the Discovery Institute in Seattle, WA, and Read More ›

Life’s Origin: Lab + Information = Mind

Stephen Meyer with James Tour on the Science & Faith Podcast
In this interview, Dr. James Tour and Dr. Stephen Meyer discuss science and faith, while getting into the details on the discovery of complex, sequence specific information required for life’s function and origin, and the required fine-tuned laboratory that we call our universe that must exist in order for assembly to occur. In the search for a cause, and by Read More ›

We’re Still Clueless about the Origin of Life

An excerpt from The Mystery of Life's Origin: The Continuing Controversy
Organisms have well-defined molecular assemblies, redox potentials across membranes, and metabolic pathways — all operating in exquisite states that we call “life.”  Chemistry, by contrast, is utterly indifferent to whether anything is alive or not. Without a biologically derived entity acting upon them, molecules have never been shown to “evolve” toward life. Never. While organisms exploit chemistry for their own Read More ›

The Mystery of Life’s Origin

The Continuing Controversy
The origin of life from non-life remains one of the most enduring mysteries of modern science. The Mystery of Life’s Origin: The Continuing Controversy investigates how close scientists are to solving that mystery and explores what we are learning about the origin of life from current research in chemistry, physics, astrobiology, biochemistry, and more. The book includes an updated version of the Read More ›

The Mystery of the Origin of Life

Dr. Tour is one of the world’s top synthetic organic chemists. He has authored 680 scientific publications and holds more than 120 patents (here is a partial list). In 2014, Thomson Reuters named him one of “The World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds,” and in 2018 Clarivate Analytics recognized him as one of the world’s most highly cited researchers. Tour is Read More ›

Science Uprising 05: Origin of Life

Intelligence Required
Can life spontaneously generate itself from chemicals? Or are detailed instructions required? This episode of Science Uprising investigates the origin of life and claims by scientific materialists like Stephen Hawking that life spontaneously arose from chemicals without any guidance or intelligent design. Be sure to visit scienceuprising.com to find more videos and explore related articles and books. Experts featured in Read More ›