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Nigel Hitchin

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Nigel James Hitchin FRS born 2 August 1946 is a British mathematician working in the fields of differential geometry, algebraic geometry, and mathematical physics He is a professor of mathematics at Oxford University


  • 1 Academic career
  • 2 Honours and awards
  • 3 References
  • 4 External links

Academic career

Hitchin attended Ecclesbourne School, Duffield, and earned his BA in mathematics from Jesus College, Oxford, in 1968[2] After moving to Wolfson College, he received his DPhil in 1972 From 1971 to 1973 he visited the Institute for Advanced Study and 1973/74 the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences of New York University He then was a research fellow in Oxford and starting in 1979 tutor, lecturer and fellow of St Catherine's College In 1990 he became a professor at the University of Warwick and in 1994 the Rouse Ball Professor of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge In 1997 he was appointed to the Savilian Chair of Geometry at the University of Oxford, a position he held until his retirement in 2017

Amongst his notable discoveries are the Hitchin integrable system, the Hitchin–Thorpe inequality, Hitchin's projectively flat connection over Teichmüller space, Hitchin's self-duality equations, the Atiyah–Hitchin monopole metric, the Atiyah–Hitchin–Singer theorem, the ADHM construction of instantons of Atiyah, Vladimir Drinfeld, Hitchin, and Yuri Manin, and the Hyperkähler quotient of Hitchin, Anders Karlhede, Ulf Lindström and Martin Rocek

In his article[3] on generalized Calabi–Yau manifolds, he introduced the notion of generalized complex manifolds, providing a single structure that incorporates, as examples, Poisson manifolds, symplectic manifolds and complex manifolds These have found wide applications as the geometries of flux compactifications in string theory and also in topological string theory

He conjectured the Kobayashi–Hitchin correspondence

In the span of his career, Hitchin has supervised 37 research students, including Simon Donaldson part-supervised with Atiyah

Until 2013 Nigel Hitchin served as the managing editor of the journal Mathematische Annalen

Honours and awards

In 1991 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society[4]

In 2003 he was awarded an Honorary Degree Doctor of Science from the University of Bath

Hitchin was elected as an Honorary Fellow of Jesus College in 1998,[2] and the Senior Berwick Prize 1990, the Sylvester Medal 2000 and the Pólya Prize 2002 have been awarded to him in honour of his far-reaching work A conference was held in honour of his 60th birthday, in conjunction with the 2006 International Congress of Mathematicians in Spain

In 2012 he became a fellow of the American Mathematical Society[5]

In 2014 he was awarded another Honorary Degree Doctor of Science from the University of Warwick

In 2016 he received the Shaw Prize in Mathematical Sciences[6]


  1. ^ Nigel James Hitchin at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
  2. ^ a b Fellows' News, Jesus College Record 1998/9 p12
  3. ^ Hitchin, Nigel 2003, "Generalized Calabi–Yau manifolds", Quarterly Journal of Mathematics, 54 3: 281–308, arXiv:math/0209099v1 , doi:101093/qmath/hag025 
  4. ^ "fellows" Royal Society Retrieved 20 November 2010 
  5. ^ List of Fellows of the American Mathematical Society Retrieved 21 January 2013
  6. ^ Shaw Prize 2016

External links

  • His home page at the University of Oxford
  • Nigel Hitchin at the Mathematics Genealogy Project

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