Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search

 

Victoria fellow wins top international award

Dr Denis Hirschfeldt, a postdoctoral fellow at Victoria University, has been named joint winner of the Sacks Prize in Mathematical Logic.

A top international award, the Sacks Prize is awarded for the world’s best PhD thesis in mathematical logic.

Dr Hirschfeldt graduated from Cornell University with his PhD in 1999 before coming to Victoria to work with Professor Rod Downey. His field of study, which combines the disciplines of mathematics and computer science, looks at what kind of mathematical functions computers are theoretically capable of performing. It has implications for helping computers to solve problems that they find hard and discovering what kind of tasks computers can potentially carry out.

Dr Hirschfeldt and Professor Downey are working on a Marsden Fund project investigating the structural aspects of computation. Victoria’s School of Mathematical and Computing Sciences is particularly strong in mathematical logic and theoretical computer science.

Professor Downey says Dr Hirschfeldt’s thesis is ingenious and technically intricate.

“On one occasion his creativity even surprised his supervisor, Professor Richard Shore. Shore was not aware that Hirschfeldt was working on a problem upon which he himself had worked very hard, and had long been unable to solve.”

“Shore and another mathematician, Khoussainov, finally solved the problem during an overseas trip. Hirschfeldt also managed to solve the problem, but in a completely different way. It was only when Shore returned to Cornell that he discovered that the long standing question had also been answered by one of his own students.”

Dr Hirschfeldt will take up a position at the University of Chicago when his Fellowship at Victoria finishes in October.

The Sacks Prize is given by the Association for Symbolic Logic. It is named after Gerald Sacks, a Professor of Mathematics who works at Harvard and MIT, and who has had many of the world’s most famous logicians as his students.

Victoria University Wellington

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Howard Davis Review: Another Time, Another Place - David Friesen Trio Live

"It has been said of David Friesen that he does for the art of bass playing what Pythagoras did for the triangle" - Patrick Hinley, Jazz Times. More>>

Howard Davis Review: The Father - Descending Into The Depths of Dementia

Florian Zeller's dazzling drama The Father explores the effects of a deeply unsettling illness that affects 62,000 Kiwis, a number expected to grow to 102,000 by 2030. More>>


Howard Davis Review: Blade Runner Redivivus

When Ridley Scott's innovative, neo-noir, sci-fi flick Blade Runner was originally released in 1982, at a cost of over $45 million, it was a commercial bomb. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books:
Jenny Abrahamson's John & Charles Enys: Castle Hill Runholders, 1864-1891

This volume will be of interest to a range of readers interested in the South Island high country, New Zealand’s natural environment, and the history of science. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION