Australian Medal for Global Maths Star

 In Media releases

One of Australia’s leading mathematicians, Geordie Williamson, was among those honoured at today’s opening of the 62ndAustralian Mathematical Society (AustMS) annual meeting in Adelaide.

A Professor at the University of Sydney, Williamson received the 2018 Australian Mathematical Society medal with University of Melbourne’s Professor Peter Taylor receiving the 2018 George Szekeres Medal. A team of Australian, French and Swiss researchers were honoured with the 2018 Gavin Brown Best Paper Prize for their paper the critical fugacity for surface adsorption of self-avoiding walks on the honeycomb lattice is 1 + √ 2which waspublished in Communications in Mathematical Physics 326 (2014) 727-754.

Congratulating this year’s medallists, AustMS President, Professor Kate Smith-Miles said the contributions of each of the 2018 winners had transformed Australian and global mathematics.

“We are delighted to honour these extraordinary Australians whose work has helped advance understanding of their fields and the mathematical sciences,” she said.

Thanking AustMS for his award, Professor Geordie Williamson said he was humbled by the recognition of his career and contribution to representation theory. The award bookends a stellar year for Williamson who launched the Sydney Mathematics Research Institute in November, as well as being named a Fellow of both the Royal Society and Australian Academy of Sciences. In 2018, he was also the first mathematician working in Australia to deliver a plenary at the International Congress of Mathematicians.

“It is a great honour to be acknowledged by the Australian mathematical community. I am deeply grateful to my undergraduate lecturers and colleagues within the Australian mathematical community, a number of whom are previous medallists,” he said.

Globally respected stochastic modelling researcher, Professor Peter Taylor said it was a true honour to receive this year’s George Szekeres medal. One of Australia’s leading applied probabilist, Taylor is admired for the breadth of his contributions to probability and operations research.

“Australia’s fine tradition of applied probability research goes back to Journal of Applied Probability founder, Joe Gani. I’m delighted to see this legacy has been recognised, and both thrilled and slightly humbled to see my name amongst the previous winners of the Szekeres Medal, who are all giants of the community,” said Professor Taylor.

Speaking on behalf of the team behind this year’s Gavin Brown Prize winning paper, the University of Melbourne’s Professor Jan de Gier thanked AustMS for celebrating the team’s work in this way. The paper – which extends the case of self-avoiding walks in the plane, and draws from a wide range of sophisticated techniques and methods from statistical mechanics, combinatorics and probability theory – has been described by assessors as outstanding and remarkable.

“This paper is a tremendous example of mathematical collaboration and the beauty of mathematics. We thank AustMS and the mathematics community for this honour,” said Professor de Gier.

Today’s ceremony opens the 2018 AustMS annual meeting at the University of Adelaide. A calendar fixture within the Australian mathematical sciences, the event features a diverse program of cutting-edge mathematical methodologies and research to nurture national and international collaboration.

More information:

The Australian Mathematical Society Medal

Awarded annually to an AustMS member under 40 for distinguished mathematical sciences research.

The George Szekeres Medal

Presented in even numbered years for outstanding contributions to the mathematical sciences.

Gavin Brown Best Paper Prize

Awarded to an outstanding article, monograph or book consisting of original mathematical research.

For Interview:
Professor Kate Smith-Miles, AustMS President
2018 Medallists

Media Contact: Laura Watson
E: media@amsi.org.au
P: 04215 18733

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