Selective, well controlled and directionally grown Sn doped In 2O3 nanowires (In2O3: Sn nanowires, SIO NWs) were synthesized at a low fabrication temperature (∼770°C) through a vapour-liquid-solid (VLS) process under a precise carrier gas flow. The majority of the SIO NWs are grown along , with  and  as minority forming directions, which implies a nearly epitaxial crystal structure. There are fewer physical defects, such as line or planar defects and contaminations, in the SIO NWs than in pure In2O3 nanowires seen through high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HR-TEM) observations. The spectrum of photoluminescence (PL) emission indicates a stable strong blue light peak located at ∼440 nm with an excited wavelength of 275 nm at room temperature. The Sn dopant in the SIO NWs can enhance the conductivity of the nanowires leading to the lowering of the turn-on electric-field to 0.66 V μm-1 under a current density of up to 1.0 mA cm-2 based on their field emission characteristics. Furthermore, the field emission enhancement coefficient, β, is also increased to 1.48 × 105, which is very close to the carbon nanotube, (CNT) level. SIO NWs fabricated by a VLS process offer a potential application in flat panel displays as demonstrated in this study.