Meet Ellen Eischen, von Neumann Fellow in the School of Mathematics, who works in the field of number theory, exploring the nature of whole numbers. In this Q&A, she shares her journey through math, from the secret math journal she kept in high school, to a Women in Numbers program that facilitated her research, to joining the Institute for the 2024–25 academic year.

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School of Mathematics

Pravesh Kothari, Visiting Professor in the School of Mathematics (2024), describes his experiences of interacting with “celebrities” from the worlds of pure mathematics and computer science at the Institute for Advanced Study, and how these two fields strongly interconnect at IAS.

Emma Moore, Mathematics - Natural Sciences Librarian at the Institute for Advanced Study, shares the storied history of the library, including its links to Hermann Weyl, Faculty in the School of Mathematics (1933–55), and trailblazing librarian Judith Sachs.

The “Paths to Math” series comes to a close with this special edition video, featuring one of our most beloved veteran mathematicians: Distinguished Visiting Professor Karen Uhlenbeck. Watch to see Karen describe the introduction to calculus course that awakened her love for math and her spirited female colleagues in Chicago, who helped to dispel any lingering doubts about being a woman mathematician.

"Imagine that you are blowing a soap bubble using a simple wand. Why does the bubble that you create take the form of a sphere? Why not an ovoid? Or a cylindrical shape? Or something totally random?" Explore the minimization principles that govern such systems with geometric measure theorist Paul Minter, who serves as a Veblen Fellow in the School of Mathematics.

The largest live autonomous vehicle traffic experiment ever conducted began the week of November 18, 2022, in Nashville, Tennessee. While this experiment used 4 miles of highway, 288 cameras, and an impressive command center, one of its most vital resources was equations on a blackboard. In front of one of these blackboards was Benedetto Piccoli, Visitor in the School of Mathematics.

This installment of the “Paths to Math” series features Paul Minter, Veblen Research Instructor (2022–23) and Veblen Fellow (2023–27) in the Institute’s School of Mathematics. Watch to see Paul describe how, despite being discouraged from applying to an elite school, his passion for mathematics brought him from a small U.K. seaside town, to Cambridge University, and then to IAS.

This installment of our “Paths to Math” video series features Kalyani Kansal, Member (2023–24) in the Institute’s School of Mathematics. Watch to hear Kalyani describe her fascination with the “patterns” of the Langlands Program, outline the interesting commonalities between mathematics and detective stories, and discuss the importance of diversity and representation in the field.

Shiyue Li, Member in the School of Mathematics, is interested in algebraic geometry and combinatorics. As a researcher she enjoys, in her words, “the freedom to wonder about fascinating things in nature, and the connections with other minds from around the world.”

This installment of our "Paths to Math" video series features Patrick Shafto, Member in the Institute’s School of Mathematics and Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science at Rutgers University. Learn how Patrick’s unexpected start studying physical therapy at Northeastern eventually led to his current research, which explores the intersections of human and machine learning.