Abel Prize 2011

The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters has decided to award the Abel Prize for 2011 to John Milnor, Institute for Mathematical Sciences, Stony Brook University, New York “for pioneering discoveries in topology, geometry and algebra”. Professor Milnor has received all the major awards in Mathematics: He was awarded the Fields Medal in 1962, the Wolf Prize in 1989 and is the only person to have won all the three Steele Prizes of the American Mathematical Society (AMS) in 1982, 2004 and early this year for seminal contribution to research, for mathematical exposition and for lifetime achievement respectively. He also received the U.S. National Medal of Science in 1967.

Prof Milnor's biography is at

Niels Henrik Abel (1802-1829) was a brilliant Norwegian mathematician who accomplished an amazing amount of brilliant work in his short lifetime. Abel died of tuberculosis at the age of 26 after being forced to live in miserable conditions because of his inability to obtain a university post. The offer of a professorship in Berlin was not forthcoming for four years, by which time it was too late. The letter arrived two days after Abel's death, informing him that he had been offered professorship at the University of Berlin.

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