Shunpei Yamazaki finished his master in engineering in Doshisha University, Japan in 1967. In 1970, he invented nonvolatile memory (known as “flash memory”) while in graduate school. He has since been engaged in research and development of silicon-related technology. In 1971, he got a Ph.D. and joined Tokyo Denki Kagaku Kogyo K.K. (current TDK Corporation). He established Semiconductor Energy Laboratory Co., Ltd. (SEL) and acceded to a president in 1980.
Yamazaki has been selected as No.58 in “The Top 100 Living Geniuses” compiled by Synecticsworld Inc. (UK) in 2007. He holds Guinness World Record for “the most patents held by an individual” for obtaining 6,314 patents in total as of March 2011, breaking his own record in 2004. In October 2013, SEL, in which he serves as a president, was chosen to Thomson Reuters (US)’ “2013 Top 100 Global Innovators. ” This was the second selections following 2011. He is a Life Fellow member of the IEEE and a foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences. He received Honorary Doctor of Culture from Doshisha University.