Professor Davidson has been Professor of Astrophysical Sciences, Emeritus, at Princeton University since July 1, 2011. He was Professor of Astrophysical Sciences from 1991 - 2011, and Director of the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory from 1991-1996. He received the B.Sc. degree from McMaster University in 1963, and the Ph.D. degree from Princeton University in 1966. Prior to 1991, he was Assistant Research Physicist at the University of California at Berkeley (1966-1968), a member of the Physics Department Faculty at the University of Maryland (1968-1978), an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellow (1970-1972), and Professor of Physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1978-1991), where he also served as Director of the Plasma Science and Fusion Center (1978 - 1988).
Professor Davidson, together with students and collaborators, have made numerous fundamental theoretical contributions to several areas of pure and applied plasma physics, including nonlinear plasma dynamics and collective interactions; equilibrium, stability and transport properties of high-beta fusion plasmas; physics of nonneutral plasmas; kinetic equilibrium and stability properties; intense charged particle beam propagation in high energy accelerators; charged particle beam-plasma interactions; and coherent radiation generation by relativistic electrons. He is the author of more than five hundred archival journal articles and books in basic and applied plasma physics, including four advanced graduate-level textbooks and research monographs. These include: Physics of Intense Charged Particle Beams in High Energy Accelerators, with Hong Qin (Imperial College Press and World Scientific, 2001); Physics of Nonneutral Plasmas (Addison Wesley, 1990, reissued by Imperial College Press and World Scientific, 2001); Theory of Nonneutral Plasmas (Benjamin, 1974, reissued by Addison Wesley, 1984); and Methods in Nonlinear Plasma Theory (Academic Press, 1972).
Professor Davidson is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He is a recipient of the Department of Energy's Distinguished Associate Award and the Fusion Power Associates Leadership Award, both in 1986, and recipient of The Kaul Foundation's Award for Excellence in Plasma Physics Research in 1993, and the IEEE Particle Accelerator Science and Technology Award in 2005. Professor Davidson was awarded the James Clerk Maxwell Prize in Plasma Physics by the American Physical Society in 2008, and also received the Department of Energy Office of Science Outstanding Mentor Award in 2009. In 2014 he received the Fusion Power Associates Distinguished Career Award. Professor Davidson has participated in numerous national and international panels on plasma physics and fusion research.