M. Lisa Manning

Associate Professor of Physics

Research Interests

  • Defects and deformation in disordered solids and glasses.
  • Surface tension and emergent mechanical properties in developing embryonic tissues.
  • Mitotic waves and pattern formation in biological tissues.
  • Constitutive models for friction and shear banding.


2008 Ph.D. in Physics
University of California, Santa Barbara
2005 M.A. Physics
University of California, Santa Barbara
2002 B.S. Physics
B.S. Mathematics
University of Virginia

Awards & Professional Honors

  • 2015 Cottrell Scholar, Research Corporation
  • 2014 Scialog Fellow, Moore Foundation and Research Corporation
  • 2014 Physics Department Teaching Award, Phys 211, Syracuse University
  • 2014 Sloan Research Fellow, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
  • 2013 Physics Department Teaching Award, Phys 576, Syracuse University
  • 2008 Postdoctoral fellowship, Princeton Center for Theoretical Science
  • 2004 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship

Selected Publications

M. L. Manning and A.J. Liu. Vibrational modes identify soft spots in a sheared disordered packing. Phys. Rev. Lett. 107 108302, arXiv:1012.4822 (2011).

K. Chen, M. L. Manning, P. J. Yunker, W. G. Ellenbroek, Z. Zhang, A. J. Liu, and A. G. Yodh. Structural instabilities and low-frequency modes in colloidal glasses. "Measurement of Correlations between Low-Frequency Vibrational Modes and Particle Rearrangements in Quasi-Two-Dimensional Colloidal Glasses." Phys. Rev. Lett.107 108301; arXiv:1103.2352 (2011).

M. L. Manning, R. A. Foty, M. S. Steinberg, and E.-M. Schoetz, “Coaction of intercellular adhesion and cortical tension specifies tissue surface tension,” Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 107, 28 12517-12522,(2010).

M. L. Manning, J. S. Langer, and J. M. Carlson. Strain localization in a shear transformation zone model for amorphous solids. Phys. Rev. E 76 056106 (2007).

Research Spotlight

  • Electron microscope images of LP1 cell aggregates (top) and locally minimal energy cellular structures generated by our surface tension model (bottom).