Russian mathematician turns down Fields Medal

Grigory Perelman, the reclusive Russian mathematician who may have proved the elusive Poincaré Conjecture, was awarded with a 2006 Fields Medal at the International Congress of Mathematicians--and he turned it down, according to Nature.

Three other mathematicians--Princeton University's Andre Okounkov, UCLA's Terence Tao, and Wendelin Werner from France's University of Paris-Sud--were honored with this year's Fields Medal, considered by many to be mathematics' equivalent of the Nobel Prize. All three of them were present at the ceremony in Madrid to accept their awards.

According to the International Mathematical Union, a Fields Medal has never been turned down before.

Perelman, who reportedly lives with his mother in St. Petersburg, will be eligible for a $1 million Millennium Prize from the Clay Mathematics Institute if he is indeed determined to have proved the Poincaré Conjecture, a seemingly simple problem dealing with three-dimensional spheres. No word as to whether he'll accept that one.

Featured Video
6
This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

The problem with Amazon Dash buttons

Limits on choice mean new shopping gadget won't click for everyone. Bridget Carey explains how the buttons work, and the rule changes for sharing your Prime perks with others.

by Bridget Carey