Meet the Shaw Laureates 2016

Laureate Biographies

Shaw Laureate in Astronomy 2017

The Shaw Prize in Astronomy 2017 is awarded to Simon D M White for his contributions to understanding structure formation in the Universe. With powerful numerical simulations, he has shown how small density fluctuations in the early Universe develop into galaxies and other nonlinear structures, strongly supporting a cosmology with a flat geometry, and dominated by dark matter and a cosmological constant.


Simon D M White was born in 1951 in Ashford, Kent, UK and is currently the Director of the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics, Germany. He received his BA degree in Mathematics and his PhD in Astronomy from the University of Cambridge, UK in 1972 and 1977 respectively. He was a Lindemann Fellow at the University of California (UC), Berkeley, USA (1977–1978) and Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge (1979–1980). He then returned to UC Berkeley as Adjunct Assistant Professor (1981–1984). He joined the University of Arizona, USA, where he was successively Associate Professor/Astronomer (1984–1987) and Professor/Astronomer (1987–1991) at the Steward Observatory. He served as Director at the European Association for Research in Astronomy from 1992 to 1994. Since 1994, he has been a Director of the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of London.

Mr. William J Borucki
 
Shaw Laureates in Life Science and Medicine 2017

The Shaw Prize in Life Science and Medicine 2017 is awarded in equal shares to Ian R Gibbons and Ronald D Vale for their discovery of microtubule-associated motor proteins: engines that power cellular and intracellular movements essential to the growth, division, and survival of human cells.


Ian R Gibbons was born in 1931 in Hastings, Sussex, UK and is currently Visiting Researcher at the University of California, Berkeley, USA. He obtained his BA degree in Physics in 1954 and his PhD in 1957 from the University of Cambridge, UK. He was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania, USA (1957–1958). He then worked at Harvard University, USA (1958–1967), where he was successively Research Fellow, Lecturer and Assistant Professor in the Biology Department. He was an Associate Professor (1967–1969) and Professor of Biophysics (1969–1997) at the University of Hawaii, USA. He retired from the University of Hawaii in 1997 and moved to the University of California, Berkeley, where he has been working ever since as a Research Scientist (1997–2009) and then a Visiting Researcher (2009–). He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of London.

Prof. Bonnie L Bassler
 

Ronald D Vale was born in 1959 in Hollywood, California, USA and is currently Professor of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), USA. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Biology and Chemistry from the University of California, Santa Barbara, USA in 1980 and received his PhD in Neuroscience from Stanford University, USA in 1985. He was a Staff Fellow at the Laboratory of Neurobiology, National Institutes of Health, and at the Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole (1985–1986). He then joined UCSF, where he was successively Assistant Professor (1986–1992), Associate Professor (1992–1994) and Full Professor (1994–). In 1999, he was appointed an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He served as the Director of the Cell Biology Program (2000–2003) and Chair of the Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology (2004–2010) at UCSF. He is a member of the US National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Prof. E Peter Greenberg
 
Shaw Laureates in Mathematical Sciences 2017

The Shaw Prize in Mathematical Sciences 2017 is awarded in equal shares to János Kollár and Claire Voisin for their remarkable results in many central areas of algebraic geometry, which have transformed the field and led to the solution of long-standing problems that had appeared out of reach.


János Kollár was born in 1956 in Budapest, Hungary and is currently a Professor of Mathematics at Princeton University, USA. He obtained his Bachelor of Science from Eötvös Loránd University, Hungary in 1980 and his PhD from Brandeis University, USA in 1984. He was a Research Assistant at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (1980–1981) and Junior Fellow at Harvard University, USA (1984–1987). He joined the University of Utah, USA, where he was successively Associate Professor (1987–1990), Professor (1990–1994) and Distinguished Professor (1994–1999). From 1999, he moved to Princeton University, USA as Professor and has been Donner Professor of Science since 2009. He is a member of the US National Academy of Sciences and a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Prof. Gerd Faltings
 

Claire Voisin was born in 1962 in Val-d’Oise, France and is currently Professor, Algebraic Geometry Chair at Collège de France. She obtained a postgraduate teaching diploma in mathematics in 1983 and her PhD from Université Paris-Sud, France in 1986. She joined the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) immediately after graduation in 1986 and continued her career there until 2016, and she was successively Researcher at the Université Paris-Sud in Orsay and then Senior Researcher and Directrice de recherche at the Institute de Mathematiques de Jussieu (CNRS / UPMC / Université Paris Diderot). She became a Professor at the Collège de France and has held the chair in Algebraic Geometry since 2016. She is a member of the Académie des sciences (France) and foreign associate member of the US National Academy of Sciences.

Prof. Gerd Faltings