Professor Shing-Tung Yau

Director, Yau Mathematical Sciences Center, Tsinghua University

Professor, Harvard University

Member, US National Academy of Sciences

Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Foreign Member, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Winner of Fields Medal, Crafoord Prize, Wolf Prize and Marcel Grossmann Award

Professor Shing-Tung Yau (1949- ), born in Shantou, Guangdong Province, is a Chinese and naturalized American mathematician, and one of the most influential contemporary Mathematicians. In 1969, Yau graduated from the Department of Mathematics, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and was then admitted to the University of California, Berkeley where he completed his PhD degree two years later in 1971 (at the age of 22) under the supervision of Prof. Shiing-Shen Chern. From the same year, he taught at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, State University of New York, and Stanford University successively as a Distinguished Professor. Since 1987 to now, he has been a Distinguished Professor at Harvard University, and acting as the Director of Institute of Mathematical Sciences and a Distinguished Professor-at-large at the Chinese University of Hong Kong since 1994 and 2003 respectively. In addition, he has been a professor at the Department of Physics, Harvard University since 2013.

Yau has made extremely significant contributions to differential geometry. In 1976, he proved the Positive Mass Conjecture in the Calabi Conjecture and Einstein’s equation, and provided solutions through important integration of differential geometry and differential equations, which has far-reaching consequences till today. Thereafter, Yau continued to make a number of achievements in geometry, topology and physics. In 1982, Yau was awarded the Fields Medal (at the age of 33), the highest honor in the international mathematics, or the Nobel Prize in mathematics. He continued to be recognized via the Veblen Prize in Geometry (1981), the MacArthur Fellowship (1985), the Crafoord Prize (1994) and the US National Medal of Science (1997). In 2010, Professor Yau received the Wolf Prize in Mathematics in recognition of his lifetime contribution to geometric analysis, and his enormous impact on many areas of geometry and physics.

Yau initiated the development of Mathematics in China. He led a number of research institutes in China, including Yau Mathematical Sciences Center (YMSC) at Tsinghua University. As the Director of YMSC, he is fully responsible for academic planning, talent introduction, overseas recruitment and other important work of YMSC and the Department of Mathematics. In 2011, Yau was named as the Chair Professor of the Tsinghua Xuetang Talents Program Math Class with the goal of nurturing a new generation of leading Chinese mathematician; in terms of scientific research, he established several high-level research teams at YMSC, consisting of mathematicians, computer scientists and biomathematicians; in terms of academic building, he gives great impetus to the construction of mathematics at Tsinghua University by fostering and introducing a group of prominent mathematicians and excellent young teachers in order to further raise the overall level of mathematics at Tsinghua University; in terms of academic exchange, he organized a number of high-level international academic events to enhance the exchange, cooperation and academic discussions between Chinese and foreign well-known mathematicians.

Academic achievements:

Calabi Conjecture, Minkowski Problem, Positive Energy Theorem, Hermite-Einstain Metric, Smith Conjecture, Mirror Symmetry Conjecture, and Liu-Sun-Yau Metric

Awards and honors:

2018, Marcel Grossmann Awards
2010, Wolf Prize
2010, Asian American Engineers of the Year Award
2010, AAEOY Distinguished Science & Technology Award2003, China International Science and Technology Cooperation Award
1997, United States National Medal of Science
1994, Crafoord Prize of Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences
1991, Humboldt Research Award, Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Germany
1985, MacArthur Fellows
1984, Science Digest, America's 100 Brightest Scientists under 40
1982, Fields Medal, International Congress of Mathematicians
1981, John J. Carty Award, United States National Academy of Sciences
1981, Oswald Veblen Prize in Geometry, American Mathematical Society
1980, John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship
1979, California Scientist of the Year
1975-1976, Sloan Research Fellowships

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