The Royal Statistical Society have announced their honours for 2013. RSSeNews has the list of recipients. The awards will be presented this September here at CP HQ, Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
Sir John Kingman, the former chairman of the Statistics Commission, was awarded the Guy Medal in Gold. The Guy Medal in Silver went to Brian Ripley for, in addition to his theoretical work, his ‘pivotal role’ in the open-source R environment. There’s more detail and very short citations in the RSSeNews article. Since we don’t have a statistician on staff: can anyone add any detail about any of the recipients?
Read more: Royal Statistical Society’s 2013 honours announced at RSSeNews
The Abel Prize for 2013 has been awarded to Pierre Deligne, Professor Emeritus in the School of Mathematics at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, for
seminal contributions to algebraic geometry and for their transformative impact on number theory, representation theory, and related fields.
My name is Aperiodical, king of kings;
Look on my news queue, ye Mighty, and despair!
Among other lessons not heeded by your fearless editorial trio this week are those of queueing theory. Our news queue has got a bit out of hand, so it’s time to take drastic action. Here’s what we were going to cover this week, but didn’t get round to. Some of the stories have been stewing in the queue for quite a while, so hold your nose.
The London Mathematical Society has opened nominations for its 2013 prizes, to “recognise and celebrate achievements in and contributions to mathematics”. In 2013 the Society expects to award:
- the De Morgan Medal — “the Society’s premier award for contributions to mathematics”;
- the Senior Whitehead Prize – for “work in, influence on or service to mathematics, or in recognition of lecturing gifts in the field of mathematics”;
- the Naylor Prize and Lectureship — for “work in, influence on and contributions to applied mathematics and/or the applications of mathematics and lecturing gifts”;
- the Berwick Prize — “in recognition of an outstanding piece of mathematical research actually published by the Society during the eight years ending on 31 December 2012″;
- and, up to four Whitehead Prizes — for “work in and influence on mathematics”.
More information about the prizes and how to make appropriate nominations is available at the LMS website. The closing date for nominations is Friday 18 January 2013.
In a blog post last week, Alex Bellos said:
It is often said that the reason Alfred Nobel did not endow one of his prizes in mathematics was because his wife was having an affair with a mathematician.
While this story has been debunked it is nevertheless frustrating to mathematicians, especially during Nobel week, that the noblest of the sciences is ignored by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.
As an alternative, Alex offers the Mental Calculation World Cup.
A while ago, I wrote a flippant little piece in which I claimed that “Most of the Nobel Prizes are for Mathematics“. While perfectly valid and interesting mathematics takes place within mathematics itself, it is an interesting aspect of mathematics that its applications take place on the boundaries with, or even within, other disciplines. This creates some issues for those championing mathematics. Some people would like to assess the economic impact of mathematics but this is a difficult task. At what point does an application of mathematics belong to science, engineering or technology?
The point of the IMA Mathematics Matters series of articles, as I understand it, is to show where modern mathematics research has had its impact, even though that impact may be “perfectly hidden in its physical manifestation”. Some people would take the result of a piece of research to be “not mathematics” as soon as it finds an application. Unfortunately, defining a piece of work as ‘not mathematics’ as soon as it is applied is a way to ensure that all measures of economic value of the impact of mathematics are zero; yet it is clearly the case that much of science, engineering and technology would be naught without the mathematics that underpins it.
This is a balance we try to strike when finding stories for the Math/Maths Podcast; many interesting stories, and certainly those more likely to be written up by university press offices or the media, are those which apply mathematics in some other area. How far do we follow a story before declaring it “not mathematics” and turning our attention elsewhere?
It is with this mindset that I view the Nobel Prizes. Much of the work for which the prizes are awarded is underpinned by mathematics. I see ‘Nobel week’ as an opportunity for mathematicians to go in search of the mathematics behind each prize, rather than to retreat and complain about the lack of a prize specifically for mathematics.
Nominations are now open for the Abel Prize 2013. The Abel Prize is awarded annually by Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters “for outstanding scientific work in the field of mathematics” and probably has a greater claim to be the ‘mathematical equivalent of the Nobel Prize‘ than does the, perhaps better known, Fields Medal.
The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters hereby calls for nominations for the Abel Prize 2013, and invite you (or your society or institution) to nominate candidate(s). Your nomination should be accompanied by a description of the work and impact of the nominee/nominees, together with names of distinguished specialists in the field of the nominee/nominees who can be contacted for an independent opinion.
Further details are given in the nomination guidelines.
The Maths Busking project recently won a Recognition of Distinction at the EngageU awards. As one of the Maths Busking team, I’d like to shout about this, so here’s a quick interview I had with the project’s director Sara Santos about the award and the project.
What is Maths Busking?
Sara: Maths Busking is a new form of mathematics communication via the medium of street performance.