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David Hilbert and Paul Erdös Awards

The World Federation of National Mathematics Competitions has created two international awards for mathematicians who have contributed to mathematics enrichment in their own countries or internationally.

They are named after two mathematicians who have been among the most prominent in providing mathematical challenge in the twentieth century.

Note: Since 1996 the Hilbert Award has not been awarded. It is the policy of WFNMC that the two awards have been merged with the same status and with the Erdös name surviving. A quota of three such Erdös Awards in each two-year period was also introduced from 1996.


David Hilbert Award

The David Hilbert Award was established to recognise contributions of mathematicians who have played a significant role in the development of mathematical challenges at the international level and which have been a stimulus for the enrichment of mathematics learning.

Each recipient of the award is selected by the Executive and Advisory Committee of the World Federation of National Mathematics Competitions on the recommendation of the WFNMC Awards Subcommittee.

David Hilbert (1862-1943)

David Hilbert was one of the most outstanding mathematicians of the modern era.

At the International Congress of Mathematicians in Paris in 1900 he presented the now famous and inspirational 23 problems which he challenged twentieth century mathematicians to solve.

"A mathematical problem should be difficult in order to entice us, yet not completely inaccessible, lest it mock our efforts. It should be to us a guide post on the tortuous paths to hidden truths, ultimately rewarding us by the pleasure in the successful solution." - David Hilbert.

Past Recipients

1991

Three Awards under this name were awarded in 1991, but under a different criterion. See the notes at the foot of this page.

1992

1994

1996


Paul Erdös Award

The Paul Erdös Award is established to recognise contributions of mathematicians who have played a significant role in the development of mathematical challenges at the national or international level and which have been a stimulus for the enrichment of mathematics learning.

Each recipient of the award is selected by the Executive and Advisory Committee of the World Federation of National Mathematics Competitions on the recommendation of the WFNMC Awards Subcommittee.

Paul Erdös (1913-1996)

Paul Erdös, born in 1913 in Hungary, was an indefatigable traveller, disseminating mathematics challenges to researchers in many countries of the world.

He authored or co-authored 1500 articles and books and collaborated with more mathematicians than anyone in history.

He died on Friday 20 September 1996 in Warsaw after suffering a heart attack.

Past Recipients

1992

1994

1996

1998

2000

2002

2004

2006

2008

2010

2012

2014

2016


Requirements for Nominations for the Paul Erdös Award

The following documents and additional information must be writtten in English:

  • A one or two page statement which includes the achievements of the nominee and a description of the contribution by the nominee which reflects the objectives of the WFNMC.
  • Nominee's present home and business address, and other contact details such as telephone/telefax numbers and email addresses.
  • The names of at least four people who have agreed to act as referees. Note that this is an international award and whereas all the work attributable to the candidate might be entirely within one's own country the award is as viewed internationally and it is highly recommended that one or two of the referees should be from other countries than the nominee.

Nominating Authorities

The aspirant to the Awards may be proposed through the following authorities:

The Federation encourages the submission of such nominations from Directors or Presidents of Institutes and Organisations, from Chancellors or Presidents of Colleges and Universities, and others.


Earlier Version of David Hilbert Award

It should be noted that 1991 Awards under the name of David Hilbert were presented on the basis of quite different criteria, that of having written the most interesting articles written in the previous years' volumes of the WFNMC Journal Mathematics Competitions.

1991

  • Edward Barbeau, Canada. Ed's 1989 article, Mathematics Contests: Time to take Stock? was a thought-provoking article reviewing the growth of contests and assessing their role in the learning process for students of various types.
  • Arthur Engel, Germany. Arthur wrote an-indepth article in 1987 on the issues of creating Mathematical Olympiad Problems, from a number of perspectives.
  • Graham Pollard, Australia. Graham's 1987 article Two Methods of Reducing Guessing in Multiple Choice Competitions proposed methods to reduce the impact of guessing, such as allowing students to nominate answers known to be incorrect and tiering the paper.


 

 

 
 
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