Fields Metal only for under 40?

  • Thread starter Howers
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  • #1
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Main Question or Discussion Point

Why is it that one must be under 40 to be eligible for a Fields Metal?

Are they implying old farts can't do math? I wonder what Archimedes would say about this...
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
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I'm guessing the motivation is quite the contrary. Old farts can do math, and they're probably a lot better at it than the younger folks. Perhaps the rules are meant to negate the obvious advantage that older mathematicians would have with an entire lifetime of research work to draw on.

Wolfram Mathworld states the following on the Fields Medal: "Consistent with Fields' wish that the awards recognize both existing work and the promise of future achievement, it was agreed to restrict the medals to mathematicians not over forty at the year of the Congress." And somewhat ironically, the likeness of Archimedes is imprinted on each Fields Medal!
 

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