Creative Research Medal 2002
Elham Izadi, Associate Professor of Mathematics, has made an enormous contribution to her field by providing the final step of an algebraic geometry problem that has eluded world experts for more than three decades. The theory of algebraic curves is vital to the development of mathematics and has led to the advancement of such fields as differential geometry, algebraic geometry, complex analysis, and calculus. During the mid-19th century, mathematicians realized that the geometry and analysis of algebraic curves could be better understood from an associated abelian variety called the Jacobian, and specific functions on the Jacobian named theta-functions. Through her research, Dr. Izadi has solved the final, most technically difficult step in the analysis of the Jacobian of a curve and of its theta divisor. Her work was published in a leading journal and has attracted significant funding from the National Science Foundation. Solving a problem of this magnitude – one that lies at the center of mathematical development – has established Dr. Izadi as a leading expert in the field.