LI Jinghai graduated from the Department of Thermal Engineering of the Harbin Institute of Technology in 1982. He entered a master's degree program at his alma mater in the same year. He obtained his Ph.D. from the CAS Institute of Process Engineering (IPE), in Beijing in 1987. He conducted his post-doctoral research at the City University of New York and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology. After returning to China in 1990, he served as assistant professor, associate professor, professor, vice director and director of IPE in succession. In February 2004, he was appointed a vice president of CAS. Prof. LI established the Energy-Minimization Multi-Scale (EMMS) model for gas-solid systems. The model has been extended to many different complex systems, and has been used widely in chemical and energy industries. He is the vice president of International Council for Science (ICSU) for Scientific Planning and Review, the vice chairman of China Association of Science and Technology, and the vice president of Chinese Society of Chemical Engineering. He holds memberships from CAS, TWAS (The Academy of Sciences for the Developing World), SATW (Swiss Academy of Engineering), RAEng (The Royal Academy of Engineering) and ATSE (Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering).