Joel Moore

Office: 557 Birge
Main: (510) 642-8313
Moore Research Group

Job title: 

Joel Moore joined the physics department faculty as an assistant professor in January 2002. He received his A.B. summa cum laude in physics from Princeton University in 1995 and spent a Fulbright year abroad before graduate studies at MIT and a year at Bell Labs.  He is an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences (2022), a Simons Investigator (2013-2023), an elected Fellow of the American Physical Society (2013), and Chern-Simons Professor.  He is also a Senior Faculty Scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Research Interests

I am a theoretical physicist studying condensed matter. My main interest is in the properties of quantum materials, in which electron-electron interactions or wave function topology yield new states of matter. The zero-temperature quantum phase transitions between correlated quantum states are an especially beautiful and universal part of this field. I also seek to understand how correlated quantum states transport charge, spin, and heat.  My work frequently uses concepts from quantum information theory such as entanglement entropy to analyze problems in condensed matter physics. Theoretical work on these problems benefits from an increasing quantity and quality of experimental data, and students in the group are encouraged to interact with experimental efforts at Berkeley and elsewhere.


G. Refael and J. E. Moore, "Entanglement entropy of random quantum critical points in one dimension", Phys. Rev. Lett. 93, 260602 (2004).

E. Fradkin and J. E. Moore, "Entanglement entropy of 2D conformal quantum critical points: hearing the shape of a quantum drum'', Phys. Rev. Lett. 97, 050404 (2006).

J. E. Moore and L. Balents, "Topological invariants of time-reversal-invariant band structures'', Phys. Rev. B (Rapid Communications) 75, 121306 (2007).

A. M. Essin, J. E. Moore, and D. Vanderbilt, “Magnetoelectric Polarizability and Axion Electrodynamics in Crystalline Insulators”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 102, 146805 (2009).

J. E. Moore, “The birth of topological insulators”, Nature 464, 194–198 (2010). 

J. E. Moore and J. Orenstein, “Confinement-induced Berry phase and helicity-dependent photocurrents”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 105, 026805 (2010).

J. H. Bardarson, F. Pollmann, and J. E. Moore, “Unbounded Growth of Entanglement in Models of Many-Body Localization'', Phys. Rev. Lett. 109, 017202 (2012).

F. de Juan, A. G. Grushin, T. Morimoto, and J. E. Moore, “Quantized circular photogalvanic effect in Weyl semimetals”, Nature Communications 8, 15995 (2017).

R. Moessner and J. E. Moore, Topological Phases of Matter, Cambridge University Press (2021).

T. Cookmeyer, J. Motruk, and J. E. Moore, "Four-spin terms and the origin of the chiral spin liquid in Mott insulators on the triangular lattice", Phys. Rev. Lett. 127, 087201 (2021).

This list is not regularly updated; more recent work is available at

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