Prize Recipients

The selection of the winners was be made by the MCA 2017 Awards Subcommittee, which is appointed by the MCofA Executive Committee. In making their decisions the Awards Subcommittee was guided by the information in the nominating material and detailed insights about the nominees' professional accomplishments. 

The Americas Prize

José Antonio de la Peña – Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México

​For his groundbreaking contributions to algebra, combinatorics and their applications, especially in the theory of representations of algebras and in network theory and spectral graph theory, with applications to the structure of molecules of hydrocarbons. In addition to his brilliant research career, de la Pena has made major contributions to enhance and develop mathematics throughout Latin America and beyond. He is passionate about advancing science in Mexico and he has repeatedly  demonstrated the skills, energy and wisdom to make lasting contributions on a global scale.

About the Americas Prize: One prize of USD 5000 is awarded to an individual or a group in recognition of their work to enhance collaboration and the development of research that links mathematicians in several countries in the Americas. 

The Solomon Lefschetz Medal

Monica Clapp – Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México

For her fundamental contributions in a broad number of areas, ranging from algebraic topology to nonlinear partial differential equations and, especially, for her work towards understanding the influence of symmetry on the number and the shape of solutions to variational problems.

Gunther Uhlmann – University of Washington, USA

For his universally recognized leadership of the rich and difficult field of inverse problems.His research combines sophisticated micro local analysis with an excellent taste for concrete physical problems. A recent striking example is his work on the now popular “cloaking” phenomenon which Ullmann and his collaborators explained in complete mathematical rigour.

About the Solomon Lefschetz Medal: Two medals with an award of USD 5000 are given to mathematicians in recognition of their excellence in research and their contributions to the development of mathematics in a country or countries in the Americas.

The MCA Prize

Héctor H. Pastén Vásquez – Harvard University, USA

For his profound results in arithmetic and analytic number theory including his work on the ABC conjecture and his results on H10 for non-Archimedean analytic and meromorphic functions.

MCA 2017 Prize Lecture: Tuesday July 25th, 9:00 am, International, Centre Mont-Royal: The abc Conjecture and the d(abc) Theorem

Vlad Vicol – Princeton University, USA

For his impressive body of work on the mathematical aspects of the equations of fluid dynamics. He is an extraordinary mathematician whose work is notable for both innovative ideas and technical brilliance.

MCA 2017 Prize Lecture: Tuesday July 25th, 10:30 am, International, Centre Mont-Royal: Turbulent weak solutions of the Euler equations

Pablo Shmerkin  – Torcuato Di Tella University and CONICET

For fundamental work that greatly expanded the bridges between ergodic theory and geometric measure theory, as well as their relations to harmonic analysis and probability theory, including a much refined understanding of the projections of dynamically defined Cantor sets. 

MCA 2017 Prize Lecture: Wednesday July 26th, 5:30 pm, Cartier, Centre Mont-Royal: Expansions in bases 2 and 3: old conjectures and new results

Umberto Hryniewicz – Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

For his profound work on what is now called symplectic dynamics, that is, the study of conservative dynamics using sophisticated tools from symplectic topology, including the proof of a Poincaré-Birkhoff theorem for tight Reeb flows on the 3-sphere.

MCA 2017 Prize Lecture: Thursday July 27th, 9:00 am, Symposium Auditorium, Centre Mont-Royal: Symplectic dynamics: methods and results

Robert Morris – Instituto de Matemática Pura e Aplicada, Brazil

For his very influential work in combinatorics and probability, with deep contributions in extremal combinatorics, Ramsey theory, random graph processes and percolation.

MCA 2017 Prize Lecture: Thursday July 27th, 9:00 am, International, Centre Mont-Royal: Random graph processes


About the MCA Prize: Five prizes of USD 1000 each are awarded to mathematicians who are no more than 12 years past their PhD in July 2017. Eligibility for consideration of nominees requires that they either received their graduate education or that they currently hold a position in one or more countries in the Americas. The choice of the prize winners was based on the documented mathematical achievements of the nominees. The winners will be giving lectures on their work at the Congress.