Maths scholars among world’s elite 100

Two La Trobe University researchers have been chosen to take part in the world's most prestigious event for young mathematicians, the Heidelberg Laureate Forum, to be held in Germany this month.

They are John Tsartsaflis, a third-year doctoral student, and Philipp Bader, a post-doctoral researcher.

'This is a great achievement for the two scholars,' said La Trobe Head of Mathematics and Statistics, Dr Luke Prendergast.  

'Only 100 young mathematicians world-wide are invited to join this select group, five of them from Australia with La Trobe sending the largest contingent.

'It also demonstrates the calibre and international standing of maths research at La Trobe, particularly that of our pure and applied mathematics groups,' Dr Prendergast said.

This is the second year in a row that La Trobe researchers have been chosen to take part in the forum.

Meeting with more than 20 laureates

The week-long event enables the world's most promising mathematicians, along with another group of 100 young computer scientists, to meet and work with more than 20 laureates of these disciplines.

These mentors are people who have won top international awards such as the Fields medal – maths' answer to the Nobel Prize – and the Abel, Turing and Nevanlinna prizes.

The 'hot topic' on this year's program deals with the challenges of Big Data.

Mr Tsartsaflis' work is on an aspect of pure mathematics, known as 'Lie Theory', which can be used by physicists to help describe the dynamics of the universe at both supergalactic and subatomic levels.

Originally from Greece, Mr Tsartsaflis, is a graduate from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.

Toward high-speed computation

Dr Bader's special research interest is the geometric integration of differential equations, centrepiece of most engineering and scientific research.

His aim is to design new methods to increase the accuracy of these equations using fewer steps, to achieve more efficient, high-speed computation.

Dr Bader hails from Germany where he studied at the University of Tübingen, followed by his PhD at Spain's Polytechnic University of Valencia.

The Forum – from August 23 to 28 – is run by the Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies, with support from the German Klaus Tschira Stiftung. It is named after German physicist and entrepreneur Klaus Tschira, co-founder of the software giant SAP, who died earlier this year.

Read more about the Heidelberg Laureate Forum

Photo from left: Mr Tsartsaflis and Dr Bader with their Department Head, Dr Prendergast.

Media contact: Ernest Raetz 041 226 1919.