Department of Mathematics, University of California, Berkeley
1999 Bowen lectures
Tuesday, November 9, 4:10pm-5:00pm
Reception in 1015 Evans following the lecture
Wednesday, November 10, 4:10pm-5:00pm
Thursday, November 11, 4:10pm-5:00pm
Cliff H. Taubes
Speculations about smooth 4-manifolds:
now we know just how little we know
Recent advances in our understanding of
smooth 4-dimensional manifolds have led us to the curious position of now
knowing just how little we know of 4-manifolds. After I tell you where
the boundary of our knowledge lies (an easy task), I will describe how we
got to this amusing state of affairs and outline some speculative
programs for pushing farther into the unknown.
Cliff Taubes grew up in Rochester, New York, received his
undergraduate education at Cornell University, and obtained a PhD in Physics
from Harvard University in 1980. After a three year postgraduate fellowship
at the Harvard Mathematics Department, he taught for two years at Berkeley,
and since 1985 has been a Professor of Mathematics at Harvard. His research
interests have been in the boundary lands between differential equations,
and low dimensional topology and geometry. He is the recipient of the Veblen
Prize of the American Mathematical Society and the Elie Cartan Prize of the
French Mathematical Society. He is also a member of both the American and
National Academy of Sciences. Recently, he was named the William Petschek
Professor of Mathematics at Harvard.
The Bowen Lectures were established by friends and colleagues
as a memorial to Rufus Bowen after his untimely death at age 31 in 1978.
Born in 1947 in Vallejo, California, Robert Edward (Rufus) Bowen was
awarded the AB with prizes for scholarship by the University of
California at Berkeley in 1967. His doctorate in Mathematics was
completed in Berkeley in 1970 under the direction of Stephen Smale.
In that year he was appointed to the faculty of the Department of
Mathematics at Berkeley. He was promoted to the rank of Professor in
Bowen worked in mathematical dynamics systems theory. His pioneering
studies of topological entropy, symbolic dynamics, Markov partitions,
and invariant measures are of lasting importance; much of today's
research is inspired by his ideas.
Each year the Department of Mathematics invites an outstanding
mathematician to deliver the Bowen Lectures on important topics of
Past Bowen lecturers
|1981-82  ||Dennis Sullivan
||1993-94  ||Alain Connes|
||1992-93||Israel M. Gelfond
Hendrik W. Lenstra, Jr., Chair, 1999 Bowen lecture committee
This page was last modified October 22, 1999.