2023-24 Serge Lang Undergraduate Lecture

Ken OnoThe 2023 Serge Lang Undergraduate Lecture will be held on Friday September 29th with Professor Ken Ono - University of Virginia. 

MUSA and the Department of Mathematics, University of California, Berkeley, present

Title: Distributions in Number Theory

Abstract. Number theorists like to count. We count stuff like integer partitions, prime numbers, rational points, quadratic forms, to name a few. The practice of collecting and analyzing numerical data of such objects in large quantities, especially for the purpose of inferring proportions, is known as “Arithmetic Statistics”. This field is thriving, with extraordinary recent results on prime numbers and elliptic curves in the works of Fields medalists Bhargava, Maynard, and Tao. Also, celebrated work on number fields and Galois representations by Matchett-Wood and Taylor (and their many collaborators) are resolving long standing conjectures and opening new fields of study. This lecture will offer a sample of surprising down-to-earth distributions on primes, partitions, and rational points.

Bio: Ken Ono is the STEM Advisor to the Provost and the Marvin Rosenblum Professor of Mathematics at the University of Virginia. He studies mathematics, specializing in algebra, arithmetic geometry, combinatorics and number theory. He earned his PhD from UCLA in 1993, and he earned his BA from the University of Chicago in 1989. He is a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, David and Lucile Packard Fellowship, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellowship, and an NSF CAREER Award. In 2000 he received a Presidential Early Career Award at a ceremony at the White House. In 2005 he was named the National Science Foundation Director’s Distinguished Teaching Scholar, the highest honor awarded by NSF for excellence in research and teaching. He is a Fellow of the American Mathematical Society, and he is the recipient of the 2023 University of Chicago Alumni Award for Professional Achievement. Outside academia, he has a footprint in film and sports. He was an Associate Producer of the Hollywood film The Man Who Knew Infinity, which starred Dev Patel and Jeremy Irons, and building on his lifelong interest in sports, he is a technical consultant for elite swimmers and triathletes, having advised multiple NCAA national champions and Olympic medalists.