Ideas

“We feel strongly that the spirit characteristic of America at its noblest, above all the pursuit of higher learning, cannot admit of any conditions as to personnel other than those designed to promote the objects for which this institution is established, and particularly with no regard whatever to accidents of race, creed, or sex.”

IAS News

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May 20, 2019

The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters produced a short film about Karen Uhlenbeck, 2019 Abel Laureate and Visiting Professor in the School of Mathematics at the Institute for Advanced Study. Watch the short film here.

In the Media

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May 15, 2019

Angelos Chaniotis joins Andrew Keen to discuss the origins of democracy — why democracy began in Athens, what it was like when it first emerged — for an episode of How to Fix Democracy, a collaboration of the Bertelsmann Foundation and Humanity in Action.

May 13, 2019

Angelos Chaniotis, Professor in the School of Historical Studies, will present the talk “Mithras at Bloomberg: Memory, Feeling, Faith” at Bloomberg’s new London headquarters. The talk will be followed by a tour of the temple, or Mithraeum, located beneath the Bloomberg site. Originally excavated in 1954, it is one of many secretive houses of worship erected by the worshippers of Mithras in veneration of their god.

May 17, 2019

The 2019 Women and Mathematics Program is organized by Sun-Yung Alice Chang of Princeton University; Dusa McDuff of Barnard College, Columbia University; and Margaret Readdy of the University of Kentucky, former Members in the Institute’s School of Mathematics. “This year’s program in geometric analysis, led by Toti Daskalopoulos and Tatiana Toro, promises to be mathematically interesting and challenging,” said Readdy. 

Ideas

By Karen Uhlenbeck

It's not so easy being a role model. One of the things you learn when you’re going through life and so forth is that you need role models, but you don’t need perfect role models. You need role models who fall down and pick themselves up. You need role models who show how even though you can’t do everything, you can do some things. You need role models to keep you going.

Ideas

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By Graham Farmelo

One of the biggest leaps forward in our understanding of these scattering amplitudes took place at the Institute for Advanced Study in the fall of 2003, when Edward Witten discovered a new approach to the subject, based on Roger Penrose’s twistors. They had yet to become part of mainstream physics, and most theorists regarded them as merely a mathematical curiosity. Witten’s work propelled them into the mainstream of theoretical physics, generated new lines of research, and opened up new ways of thinking about scattering in the subnuclear domain. 

Ideas

By Monica H. Green

The Institute is a remarkably modest place. Like all Members, I was provided a lovely apartment, a simple office (with computer), access to libraries, lunch in the dining hall, tea in the afternoon. So how does new knowledge come out of such a simple mix? 
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By Didier Fassin and Anne-Claire Defossez

How could a leaderless grassroots movement, involving often quite small groups of protesters, monopolize the national news, capture the attention of the wider world, and destabilize a government that had swept to power by a landslide victory in 2017? As Jacques Rancière has suggested, it is as difficult to understand why some people mobilize when confronted with situations they regard as unacceptable, as it is to understand why others in similar or even worse circumstances do not. 

By Robbert Dijkgraaf

The black hole is just such a paradox, the atom of the twenty-first century. From the perspective of gravity, it is the simplest object we know of, no more than a hole in space. At the same time, according to quantum theory, it is the most complex object, the most compact way to store matter and information . . . The iconic image is therefore so exciting because it tells us that there is a solution for our homework.