Mathematician Burkhard Wilking receives Staudt Prize 2022
Prof. Burkhard Wilking from the Mathematical Institute at Münster University has been awarded the Karl Georg Christian von Staudt Prize 2022. The Otto and Edith Haupt Foundation at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, which has awarded the prize for the eighth time, does so in recognition of Wilking’s outstanding work in the field of theoretical mathematics. The prize, worth 25,000 euros, is one of the most valuable in Germany for mathematics and will be officially presented on 22 April in Erlangen.
Burkhard Wilking undertakes research in the field of differential geometry, which has applications for example in the General Theory of Relativity and in satellite navigation. The Scientific Commission of the Society of Mathematical Research put Wilking’s name forward and, in justifying its proposal, emphasised not only his contribution to the construction of metrics of non-negative sectional curvature, as well as to rigidity theorems for manifolds of positive curvature, but also his creative use of the Ricci flow.
The award winner
Burkhard Wilking was born in Vechta in 1970. He studied in Münster, where he obtained his PhD in 1998. From 1999 to 2001 he worked at the University of Pennsylvania (USA) before being appointed Professor of Differential Geometry at the University of Münster. He was, and still is, heavily involved in several major research projects – currently for example in the Cluster of Excellence Mathematics Münster, in the Collaborative Research Centre Geometry Deformations and Rigidity, and in the Priority Programme SPP Geometry at Infinity. In 2009 he received the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize. He has been a member of the Leopoldina since 2016, of the North Rhine-Westphalian Academy of Sciences and Arts since 2018, and of the Academia Europaea since 2019.
The Karl Georg Christian von Staudt Prize is awarded every three to six years by the Otto and Edith Haupt Foundation at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. It is awarded to researchers working – and not just temporarily – at a university or research institute in Germany. Not only individual discoveries of particular importance make candidates eligible for receiving the prize; the entire scientific work of especially distinguished researchers in the field of theoretical mathematics does so too.