HELSINKI: Ukraine’s Maryna Viazovska paid tribute to those suffering in her war-torn country on Tuesday as she became the second woman to be awarded the Fields Math Medal, known as the Nobel prize for mathematics.
Viazovska, a 37-year-old Kyiv-born math professor, received the prestigious Fields Math Medal alongside three other winners at a ceremony in Helsinki.
“My life changed forever” when Moscow invaded Ukraine in February, she said in a video displayed at the ceremony, adding that her sisters had been evacuated from Kyiv.
“Right now Ukrainians are really paying the highest price for our beliefs and our freedom,” she said.
The International Congress of Mathematicians, where the Fields Math Medal is awarded, was initially scheduled to be held in Russia’s second city Saint Petersburg — and opened by President Vladimir Putin.
Earlier in the year hundreds of mathematicians signed an open letter protesting the choice of the host city, and after Moscow invaded Ukraine in late February the event was moved to the Finnish capital.
The other Fields Math Medal winners were France’s Hugo Duminil-Copin of the University of Geneva, Britain’s James Maynard of Oxford University and June Huh of Princeton in the United States.
Fields Math Medal, along with $15,000 Canadian dollars ($11,600), is awarded every four years to between two to four candidates under the age of 40 for “outstanding mathematical achievement”.
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