Francisco José García-Vidal

Full Professor

Born on December 2nd (1965) in Madrid (Spain), Francisco J. García Vidal graduated in Physics from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM) in 1988. He obtained a PhD in Physics from the UAM in 1992 under the supervision of Profs. Fernando Flores and Alvaro Martín Rodero.

Francisco J. García Vidal was a Marie-Curie Fellow at Imperial College (1994-1996), working in the theoretical group of Prof. Sir John Pendry. After this postdoctoral stay, he has been associated with the UAM, first as an associate professor and from December 2007 as a full professor. Since its foundation (May 2012) he is the director of the Condensed Matter Physics Center - IFIMAC at UAM, which in 2014 was recognized by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (MINECO) as an Excellent Research Center within the María de Maeztu program. This distinction was renewed in year 2018 for another four years.

During the last twenty-five years and thanks to the financial support from the European Union and the Spanish government, Prof. Garcia Vidal has established a world-leading theoretical group at UAM fully dedicated to investigating the exciting possibilities of Plasmonics, Metamaterials and Nanophotonics. During this period of time, his theoretical group has collaborated with the most relevant experimental groups working in those fields. Prof. Garcia Vidal has directed more than fifteen grants (at both National and European levels) as Principal Investigator and was awarded with a prestigious Advanced Grant from the European Research Council (ERC) in 2012.

His theoretical group has made seminal contributions to the fields of Plasmonics, Metamaterials and Nanophotonics such as:

  • A. Surface Enhanced Raman Scattering and highly absorptive metamaterials.
  • B. Extraordinary optical transmission through subwavelength apertures.
  • C. The concept of spoof surface plasmons.
  • D. Light waveguiding using surface plasmons.
  • E. Quantum Plasmonics.
  • F. Near-field Radiative Heat Transfer.
  • G. Polaritonic Chemistry and Materials Science.

Prof. Garcia Vidal has supervised 14 PhD theses during his scientific career: 1) Pilar Fernández de Pablos (2004). 2) Jorge Bravo Abad (2006). 3) Blanca Biel Ruiz (2006). 4) Antonio I. Fernández Domínguez (2009). 5) Johan Christensen (2010). 6) Sergio Gutiérrez Rodrigo (2009, University of Zaragoza). 7) Diego Martín Cano (2013). 8) Paloma Arroyo Huidobro (2013). 9) Carlos González Ballestero (2017). 10) Javier Cuerda Rodríguez (2017). 11) Victor Fernández-Hurtado (2018). 12) Javier del Pino Gutiérrez (2018). 13) Javier Galego (2019). 14) Rocío Sáez-Blázquez (2020). Prof. Garcia Vidal has also supervised the postdoc work of more than 15 researchers.

Prof. Garcia Vidal has given more than 100 talks (invited, keynote and plenary) at international conferences. He has also co-organized 12 international conferences or workshops. He serves as reviewer of the most important journals and he was a member of the Editorial Board of New Journal of Physics from January 2009 to December 2013. Since March 2017, Prof. Garcia Vidal serves as Divisional Associate Editor in the journal Physical Review Letters of the American Physical Society (APS) and has been recognized as an outstanding referee of the APS journals in year 2021. He was selected as fellow of the Optical Society of America in year 2020, was awarded by the Jaume I Prize in the category of Basic Research in the same year and has been also awarded with Blas Cabrera National prize in Physics in year 2021. He has also been selected six times among the most influential physicists of the decade (2014, 2015, 2017, 2019, 2020 and 2021) by Thomson Reuters.

Brief CV:

  • June 1988: Physics Degree, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain.
  • July 1992: PhD in Physics. Supervisors: Fernando Flores and Alvaro Martín-Rodero. PhD dissertation: "Chemisorption of hydrogen in metal and semiconductor surfaces".
  • September 1992-October 1994: Assistant professor, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain.
  • November 1994-October 1996: Marie-Curie postdoc fellow in the group of Prof. Sir John Pendry at Imperial College London, UK.
  • November 1996-November 2007: Associate professor, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain.
  • December 2007-Present: Full professor, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain.
  • April 2012-March 2017: ERC Advanced Grant "PLASMONANOQUANTA".
  • May 2012-October 2021: Founding director of the Condensed Matter Physics Center (IFIMAC) of the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain.
  • January 2017-December 2021: Divisional Associate Editor of the journal Physical Review Letters of the American Physical Society.
  • September 2018-Present: Member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of Ikerbasque.
  • August 2021-Present: Visiting researcher, Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) of Singapore.

Research IDs:

IFIMAC - Condensed Matter Physics Center

The IFIMAC - Condensed Matter Physics Center is a new María de Maeztu Excellence Research Unit located in the campus of the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid pursuing cutting-edge research and scientific excellence. It comprises researchers from several university departments aiming to advance the limits of knowledge in both theoretical and experimental Condensed Matter Physics. Sixty four researchers constitute its permanent staff with up to ninety postdoctoral researchers and Ph.D students.


  • C/ Francisco Tomás y Valiente 7, Module 05, Office: 401.2, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, E-28049 Madrid, Spain.

  • 0034 91 497 8515

  • fj.garcia(at)