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Utah Mathematician Gets Sustainability Prize

University of Utah mathematician Ivan Sudakov operates a device to extract an ice core sample in the Arctic. His research on sea ice and climate has earned him a Green Talents award for outstanding potential in sustainability research from Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

Oct. 29, 2013 – University of Utah mathematician Ivan Sudakov, who studies the mathematics linking sea ice and climate, won a 2013 Green Talents award for outstanding potential in sustainability research.

Sudakov, a Russian native who joined the university in 2012 as a research assistant professor, is among 25 winners of the honor, which is bestowed by Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

As a member of University of Utah math professor Ken Golden’s research group, Sudakov has traveled to the Arctic to study sea ice.

“The Green Talents jury was particularly impressed by Sudakov’s scientific record so far, and his strong commitment to interdisciplinary interaction between mathematics and climate science,” according to the German ministry. “By improving projections, his research offers important contributions to our understanding of the climatological and ecological role of sea ice in the climate system.”

Sudakov and the other 24 winners of the award were among 430 young scientists who applied for Green Talents – International Forum for High Potentials in Sustainable Development. During Oct. 28 – Nov. 9, the winners will tour Germany’s top sustainable research facilities as part of a two-week science forum. In Berlin on Nov. 8, they will be honored at an awards ceremony at the Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

Then, they will be invited to conduct research for three months in 2014 at a German research institution of their choosing.

Sudakov holds an Edward Lorenz Fellowship from the U.S. National Science Foundation and the Mathematics and Climate Research Network. He currently is a visiting fellow at the Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences in Cambridge, U.K.

He earned undergraduate and master’s degrees at Ural Federal University, then did work on his doctorate at both St. Petersburg State University and Novgorod State University. He conducted mathematical simulations of interaction between permafrost and the atmosphere.

An explanation of Sudakov’s research may be found at the Green Talents site.

Note: Ivan Sudakov will most easily  reached via email until mid-November. Please email him at