MEDIA RELEASE — March 20, 2014

Canadian Mathematical Society

March 20, 2014


Gail Wolkowicz to Receive 2014 CMS Krieger-Nelson Prize

Dr. Gail Wolkowicz (McMaster University)

OTTAWA, Ontario — The Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS) is pleased to announce that Dr. Gail Wolkowicz (McMaster University) is the recipient of the 2014 Krieger-Nelson Prize. Wolkowicz will receive the prize in June at the Society’s Summer Meeting in Winnipeg.

The CMS Krieger-Nelson Prize was first awarded in 1995 to recognize female mathematicians who have made outstanding contributions in the area of mathematical research. The Krieger-Nelson Prize is jointly named for Cecelia Krieger and Evelyn Nelson – two women who have had a profound impact in the area of mathematical research in Canada.

“Gail Wolkowicz is a remarkable mathematician who has made numerous contributions to the development of ecological theory,” said CMS President Keith Taylor. “Her contributions to the study of differential equations, dynamical systems and their applications make her an excellent candidate for the Krieger-Nelson Prize.”

Wolkowicz is well known both in Canada and on the international stage for her work in the area of mathematical biology. She investigates mathematical models that have a wide range of applications, including preservation of species diversity, pest control, biological waste remediation, and the production of green energy. These models involve ordinary, partial, functional, and integro differential equations. She uses both analytical and numerical tools from modern dynamical systems and bifurcation theory. She is best known for her work on the mathematical modelling of species interaction in the chemostat, an experimental apparatus that can be viewed as a lake in a laboratory that has been used to investigate theories in mathematical ecology. One of her best known papers resulted from a collaboration with Professor Lu Zhiqi, who visited her from China. In 1998 they proved that in the chemostat, the competitive exclusion principle holds under general assumptions. As well, her publications with numerous collaborators on the wide range of possible dynamics in models of predator-prey interactions have been well-cited.

“Dr. Wolkowicz is a highly respected, productive researcher who has made substantial contributions to mathematical biology that are well-known to the math biology community,” said Hal Smith (Arizona State University) in his prize nomination letter. “Her mentoring activities have made a difference; she has inspired many graduate students and postdoctoral students to become contributing members of the research community. There is no doubt that she has served as a role model for aspiring researchers in the field.”

Gail Wolkowicz obtained her B.Sc. and M.Sc. from McGill University, and her Ph.D. from the University of Alberta in 1984. Prior to joining McMaster University in 1986, she held a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada Postdoctoral Fellowship at Emory University and Brown University. She attained the rank of full professor in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at McMaster University in 1996.

For more information, contact:

Stephen Kudla , Chair
CMS Research Committee
Dept. of Mathematics
University of Toronto
or Jessica St-James
Communications and Special Projects Officer
Canadian Mathematical Society
(613) 733-2662 ext. 728

About the Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS)

The CMS is the national mathematics organization whose goal is to promote the advancement, discovery, learning, and application of mathematics. The Society's activities cover the whole spectrum of mathematics including: scientific meetings, research publications, and the promotion of excellence in mathematics education at all levels. The CMS annually sponsors mathematics awards and prizes that recognize outstanding achievements.