Kannan Soundararajan wins the Infosys Prize 2011

Kannan Soundararajan, a professor of mathematics at the Stanford University has won this year’s prestigious Infosys Prize in Mathematical Sciences. His prize citation reads

Prof. Kannan Soundararajan has made fundamental contributions to analytic number theory. These include numerous brilliant breakthroughs in well known and difficult problems, as well as the resolution of some that have been open for a long time. In particular, his recent development of new unexpected techniques to study the critical values of general zeta functions has led to the proof of the Quantum Unique Ergodicity Conjecture for classical holomorphic modular forms. Many of the analytic and combinatorial tools that Soundararajan and his collaborators have developed, in works ranging from prime numbers and sieve methods to character sums and zeta functions, have become standard tools for researchers in these fields.

Prof. Soundararajan is an acclaimed analytic number theorist working in the traditions of G. H. Hardy and Ramanujan. He has also won the SASTRA Ramanujan Prize, another prestigious prize in the year 2005. Professor Soundararajan was awarded the inaugural Morgan Prize in 1995 for his work in analytic number theory. He got his PhD from Princeton University where he studied under the guidance of Professor Peter Sarnak. At Princeton, he also held the Sloan Foundation Fellowship.

The Infosys Prize is a prestigious prize awarded annually to brilliant Indian researchers and carries with it a cash prize of 50 lacs and a Gold Medal. It can be termed the highest prize in terms of monetary value in India. Previous winners include Prof. Manindra Agarwal, Prof. Chandrashekhar Khare and Prof. Ashoke Sen.