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First Clay Award for Dissemination of Mathematical Knowledge goes to Etienne Ghys


The Clay Mathematics Institute is best known for handing out a cool million in return for answering a hard question, much like Chris Tarrant.

Anyway, that’s not all they do! The Institute says it is “dedicated to increasing and disseminating mathematical knowledge”, and that now includes handing out an award for Dissemination of Mathematical Knowledge. The first recipient is research mathematician, Frenchman, and all-round top chap Etienne Ghys.

Mathical books for kids award winners announced

mathical awards

US organisations the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute (MSRI) and the Children’s Book Council (CBC) have founded a youth book prize, called Mathical: Books for Kids from Tots to Teens. The prizes, awarded for the first time this year, recognise the most inspiring maths-related fiction and nonfiction books aimed at young people. This year, they’ve awarded a set of prizes for books released in 2014, as well as honouring books published been 2009 and 2014, plus two ‘hall of fame’ winners from the further past.

Not mentioned on The Aperiodical last week – Un-un-free research, MOOCs and cash for arty maths

Yikes! Even with our hard-working new team of News Team news teamsters chopping away at it admirably, our news queue has grown faster than we can deal with. That means it’s time for another bullet list of news!

2012 Abel Prize awarded to Endre Szemerédi

The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters has decided to award the Abel Prize for 2012 to Endre Szemerédi (Alfréd Rényi Institute of Mathematics, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, and Department of Computer Science, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, USA) “for his fundamental contributions to discrete mathematics and theoretical computer science, and in recognition of the profound and lasting impact of these contributions on additive number theory and ergodic theory.”

The Abel Prize is awarded annually since 2003 “for outstanding scientific work in the field of mathematics” and, according to Wolfram MathWorld, is “modelled after the Nobel Prize”

There are profiles of Szemerédi (pronounced, according to Nature, “sem-er-ADY”) and descriptions of his work in New ScientistPattern master wins million-dollar mathematics prize” and NatureMathematician’s ‘irregular mind’ scoops Abel award“.

Awards for statistical excellence in journalism

Nominations are open for the Royal Statistical Society’s awards for statistical excellence in journalism. Eligible work must have been published or broadcast between 1 January 2011 and 31 December 2011.

Awards are to be made in three categories:

  • print publication
  • online publication
  • broadcast media

When nominating, you are asked to indicate in which area or areas you feel an entry has made a contribution from the following:

  • raised awareness and understanding of what statistics are and what they can be used for, and what statistical methods can achieve
  • enabled greater public understanding through an accessible analysis of the statistics put forward to support or challenge the claims of policy makers
  • sourced and used statistics to investigate a societal issue and have an impact on public opinion
  • used statistics well to challenge and/or change the decisions and policies of public or private bodies

Final judging takes place in June 2012 with announcements of winners made in early June 2012. Winners will be invited to be formally presented with their awards at the Royal Statistical Society’s Awards Reception on Tuesday, 4 September 2012.

Judging criteria and an entry form are available via the RSS website.