July 10, 2013
Dr. Alexei Miasnikov, Director of the Department of Mathematical Sciences at Stevens Institute of Technology, and his frequent collaborator Dr. Olga Kharlampovich of Hunter College have been chosen as speakers at the International Congress of Mathematics (ICM) 2014, the largest conference in the world on the topic of mathematics. Organized every four years by the International Mathematics Union (IMU), the event provides a forum for leading innovators from all branches of mathematics to present the greatest advances in the field, as well as a setting for the most prestigious mathematical medals and prizes including the Fields Medals, the Nevanlinna Prize, the Gauss Prize, and the Chern Medal. After a long and competitive selection process, the pair were chosen to present at the 2014 Congress in Seoul, South Korea on the basis of their recent breakthroughs in several fundamental unsolved problems in group theory and algebra.
“The honor of presenting at the Congress underlines the significance of Dr. Miasnikov’s work,” says Dr. Michael Bruno, Dean of the Charles V. Schaefer, Jr. School of Engineering and Science. “His research is at the leading edge of the field, and we are proud of his accomplishments in both research and education in the mathematical sciences.”
The ICM provides a unique opportunity for a wide range of mathematicians to collectively recognize significant new concepts and research directions as well as interact and generate new ideas. It boasts a hundred-year tradition of a distinguished, world-renowned committee of mathematical experts selecting medal winners and speakers from the vanguard of recent advancements.
Dr. Miasnikov and Dr. Kharlampovich will update ICM attendees on the progress of their collaboration to develop a framework using first-order logic that allows mathematicians to approach previously unsolvable problems. Most of the fundamental properties of objects that occur in everyday mathematical practice can be described in a very particular, stripped down, but universal language called first-order logic. The collaborators constructed an algorithm to state categorically with first-order theory that certain mathematical objects held a definitive property. This algorithm opened the gates to answering a host of other unsolved problems, such as their ongoing NSF-funded research on the first-order theories in algebra.
Dr. Miasnikov was recently named an inaugural fellow of the American Mathematical Society. Along with Dr. Robert Gilman of the Stevens Department of Mathematical Sciences, Dr. Miasnikov received a grant from the National Security Agency's (NSA) Mathematical Sciences Program to test a novel approach to the Andrews-Curtis conjecture. Dr. Miasnikov also received the prestigious and competitive Marsden Fund Award in 2010 for the project, “From automatic groups to automatic structures and beyond,” an international collaboration with Dr. Bakh Khoussainov from the University of Auckland in New Zealand, and Dr. Olga Kharlampovich.