Two outstanding young researchers have been selected to receive the von Kaven Prize in mathematics from the von Kaven Foundation, which is administered by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation).
The recipients of the award in 2008, the Year of Mathematics, are Professor Dr. Arthur Bartels, who works on topology at the University of Münster, and Dr. Ulrich Görtz, who works on number theory at the University of Bonn. The prizes, which are worth 10,000 euros each, will be awarded at a ceremony during the opening of the annual conference of the German Mathematical Society (DMV) in Erlangen on 15 September 2008. The award will be presented on behalf of the DFG by Professor Thomas Peternell, a member of the mathematics review board and the award selection committee. The prize is funded from the proceeds of the von Kaven Foundation, which was established in December 2004 by mathematician Herbert von Kaven, from Detmold.
Prof. Dr. Arthur Bartels, 36, works in the field of geometric and algebraic topology. After completing his degree in mathematics in 1997 at the University of Mainz, Professor Bartels, who was born in Tübingen, obtained his doctorate from the University of California, San Diego in 1999, before gaining his habilitation in mathematics from the University of Münster in 2005. His work there included a period as a postdoctoral researcher as part of Collaborative Research Centre 478 “Geometrical Structures in Mathematics”, which was funded by the DFG, before being awarded a Heisenberg fellowship by the DFG in 2007.
After spending winter semester 2007/08 as a visiting lecturer at Imperial College London, Bartels then accepted an appointment to a chair at the University of Münster in April 2008. His research focuses primarily on the so-called Farrell Jones Conjecture and related problems. This conjecture is important to understanding the topology of manifolds, in other words, of generalised surfaces, some in higher dimensional spaces.
Dr. Ulrich Görtz, who is 35, works in the field of arithmetic algebraic geometry. After graduating from the University of Münster in 1997, Görtz wrote his thesis at the University of Cologne, where he received his doctorate in 2000. He also gained a wealth of international experience, spending periods at the Institut Henri Poincaré in Paris, the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, the Fields Institute in Toronto and at the University of Chicago. In late 2006 Görtz earned his habilitation at the University of Bonn, from where he successfully applied for a Heisenberg fellowship from the DFG in 2007, with which he is now working at the Mathematical Institute in Bonn.
He is particularly interested in algebraic geometric problems which originate from the Langlands program or the theory of Shimura varieties. This also involves relations to numerous other areas in mathematics, for instance to algebraic geometry and number theory, and in particular to representation theory.
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