Peter N. Gregory taught at Smith College from 1999 until 2014. After receiving his doctorate in East Asian languages and civilizations from Harvard University in 1981, he taught in the Program for the Study of Religion at the University of Illinois for 15 years. He has also served as the president and executive director of the Kuroda Institute for the Study of Buddhism and Human Values since 1984, and in that capacity he has directed two publication series with the University of Hawaii Press: "Studies in East Asian Buddhism" and "Classics in East Asian Buddhism."
Gregory's research has focused on medieval Chinese Buddhism, especially the Chan and Huayan traditions during the Tang and Song dynasties, on which he has written or edited seven books, including Tsung-mi and the Sinification of Buddhism (1991). He is currently completing a translation of a ninth-century Chinese Buddhist text on the historical and doctrinal origins of the Chan tradition.
After coming to Smith, Gregory's research and teaching became increasingly concerned with Buddhism in America, on which he produced a film, The Gate of Sweet Nectar: Feeding Hungry Spirits in an American Zen Community (2004), and co-edited a book, Women Practicing Buddhism: American Experiences (Wisdom Publications, 2007).