Deputy Chairman of Istanbul Bilgi University Mathematics Department Wins Prestigious Leelavati Award

Professor Dr. Ali Nesin, Deputy Chairman of Istanbul Bilgi University Mathematics Department, was recently awarded with the Leelavati Award, an award given every four years to scientists providing extraordinary contributions to the science of mathematics.  The winners of the Leelavati Award were announced at the International Mathematicians Congress in Rio, Brazil on August 9. 

Professor Dr. Ali Nesin received the prestigious recognition for his contributions in raising awareness of mathematics in Turkey, particularly through his “Mathematics Village,” a “haven” for students of all ages to learn mathematics and conduct research and studies in the field. At the village, students are able to take various programs and lectures to learn more about mathematics, research, and share knowledge with like-minded individuals, all in an environment that encourages learning and growth.

The Leelavati Award is acknowledged as the most prestigious award within the world of mathematics. The conferral of the award to Professor Dr. Ali Nesin was welcomed with praise and support from various experts in the field.

Prof. Alexandre Borovik from the University of Manchester said, “The award was acquired by Ali Nesin due to his extraordinary contributions to bringing the essential role mathematics plays in different human endeavors as an intellectual field of science into the social consciousness. I am very happy with this, but not surprised. I have lectured in four countries throughout my life, and I can certainly say that the works of Ali Nesin in mathematics education and promotion has no equivalent on Earth.”  

Emeritus Professor Gregory Cherlin of Rutgers University expressed that the lectures, curriculum development, and creative endeavors of Ali Nesin in the field of education have inspired a generation of mathematicians and lovers of mathematics in Turkey and should be a model for the world.

According to Max Dickmann, Jussieu Mathematics Institute Emeritus Research Director, “Ali Nesin and I met at the beginning of the 1980s when he was a doctoral student. I have been following his bright research and lecturing career at the U.S.’s best universities since then. I was surprised when I heard his courageous decision to return to Turkey toward the end of the 1990s. He established the Mathematics Department of Istanbul Bilgi University in his country. He produced an incredible number of essays, lecture notes, and popular books concerning a very large proportion of mathematics. He supported the research of numerous students, and surprised many of his colleagues with the Mathematics Village that he established in Şirince. The Mathematics Village is an extraordinarily original endeavor that contributes to the love of mathematics for Turkey and its youth”.