Awards & Prizes News

Fernando Alday wins most acclaimed lecturer award

Congratulations to Professor Fernando Alday who won the Oxford University Student Union (OUSU) Teaching Award in the “Most Acclaimed Lecturer” category for the Mathematical, Physical & Life Sciences Division.

SIAM prize for Iain Smears

Iain Smears, a third-year D.Phil student in the Mathematical Institute here in Oxford and a member of Worcester College has won one of the three SIAM Student Paper Prizes this year for his journal article “Discontinuous Galerkin Finite Element Approximation of Hamilton-Jacobi-Bellman Equations with Cordes Coefficients,” published in the SIAM Journal on Numerical Analysis.

The SIAM Student Paper Prizes will be awarded during the course of the 2014 SIAM Annual Meeting, to be held July 7-11 in Chicago, Illinois.

Dr Jonathan Pila among the winners of the Carol Karp Prize 2013

The Association for Symbolic Logic has announced Dr Jonathan Pila as among the winners of the Carol Karp Prize 2013. This prize is awarded every five years for an outstanding paper or book in the field of symbolic logic. It is made by the Association on recommendation of the ASL Committee on Prizes and Awards for a "connected body of research, most of which has been completed in the time since the previous prize was awarded," and consists of a cash award. Sharing the prize with Dr Pila are Moti Gitik, Ya'acov Peterzil, Segei Starchenko and Alex Wilkie. Alex Wilkie is presently a Logic Group visitor to the Mathematical Institute in Oxford and was a faculty member for many years before moving to Manchester.

The mathematician as all-rounder

Arguably mathematicians are the scientific all-rounders, applying their skills to a range of subjects from chemistry and medicine to engineering and economics. In some cases these skills extend even further. Professor Alain Goriely, Statutory Professor of Mathematical Modelling in Oxford, has just won second prize in the Weird and Wonderful section of the 2014 National Science Photography Competition, organised by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) for his photograph of a gömböc. A  gömböc is a convex three-dimensional homogeneous body which, when resting on a flat surface, has just one stable and one unstable point of equilibrium. Its existence was conjectured by Russian mathematician Vladimir Arnold in 1995 and proven in 2006 by Hungarian scientists Gábor Domokos and Péter Várkonyi.

A limited edition Gömböc, labelled #2013, the year of the opening of the Andrew Wiles Building in Oxford, was purchased with generous support from Otto Albrecht and Tim and Leona Wong and can be found on display in the building. The Gömböc in Alain's photograph, a gift from Otto Albrecht, is made of plexiglass which generates intricate and intriguing light patterns. The mathematics of the Gömböc can be seen in the background.

Christian Yates wins Silver Award at SET

Congratulations to Dr Christian Yates, Research Fellow at the University of Oxford, who has won the Silver Award in the mathematics category of the SET for Britain awards for his work on locust swarming. Find out more about the devastating consequences of locust swarming, how, counterintuitively, randommness helps swarms of locusts stay together and how understanding cannibalism in locusts might be the key to dispersing the swarms.

Professor Frances Kirwan made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire

Congratulations to Frances Kirwan, FRS, who has been honoured in the 2014 New Year Honours for services to mathematics. Frances, who specialises in algebraic and symplectic geometry, has been a Professor in Oxford since 1996, is a former President of the London Mathematical Society and is Chair of the United Kingdom Mathematics Trust.

Dr Chris Breward wins an Oxford University Impact Award

Congratulations to Dr Chris Breward who has won his award for promotion of the 'impact, engagement and exploitation agenda.' Chris has driven forward individual contacts with industry, notably Oxford Mathematics' relationship with BP as well as materially encouraging a wider culture of engagement. Chris also led, together with Professor Colin Please, our successful bid for the funding of a Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Industrially Focused Mathematical Modelling which will train the next generation of applied mathematicians to fill critical roles in industry and academia.

Oxford Mathematics undergraduate William Perry wins SET Best Mathematics Student prize

The Science, Engineering & Technology Student of the Year Awards (SET) are established as Europe's most important awards for science and engineering undergraduates. This year the Award for the Best Mathematics Student, judged by the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications and the London Mathematical Society, goes to William Perry, Keble College, University of Oxford, for Spin two-dimensional local field theories.

Jackie Stedall wins the British Society for the History of Mathematics 2013 Neumann Prize

The British Society for the History of Mathematics (BSHM) has announced the winner of the 2013 Neumann Prize. This prize, named after Oxford mathematician and past BSHM President Dr Peter Neumann, OBE, is awarded every two years for the best mathematics book containing historical material and aimed at a non-specialist readership.

The 2013 winner is Jackie Stedall, of Oxford University, for her book The History of Mathematics: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford, 2012). The nominating committee praised the book as ‘stimulating, very well written, and very suitable for the ‘general reader’, also containing many new and perceptive remarks about how to approach the subject'. The award was made at a joint BSHM–Gresham College meeting on 31 October.

Tom Sanders wins the European Prize in Combinatorics

Congratulations to Tom Sanders for winning the prestigious European Prize in Combinatorics. The prize is established to recognise excellent contributions in Combinatorics, Discrete Mathematics and their Applications by young European researchers not older than 35. 

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