Two University of Chicago scientists named 2022 Guggenheim Fellows

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Guggenheim Fellowships were awarded this year to two University of Chicago scientists, chosen on the basis of their past achievements and outstanding promise.

teachers. Lek-Heng Lim and Manyuan Long are among the 180 scholars selected in this year’s class from nearly 2,500 applicants. Their grants will support new research efforts related to mathematics and the origin of genes, respectively.

Professor Lek-Heng Lim is credited with introducing high-level algebra, geometry, and topology to applied mathematics. In particular, he works with a type of mathematical object called a tensor and how the concept can be used in computational mathematics and information science.

Appointed to the Department of Statistics, Lim is also interested in computational algebra and differential geometry, as well as the application of Hodge theory and the geometry of subspaces and flags to optimization and to machine learning.


Lim works with the Committee on Computational and Applied Mathematics at UChicago, which was established in 2016 to address the critical need to train a new generation of computational and applied mathematicians capable of dealing with data-centric problems in the natural sciences. and social. For example, Lim has used tensors to extract surgically useful 3D images of neurons in the human brain from MRI results and to analyze taxi trajectories in New York.

“I am grateful to the Foundation for this generous scholarship; the University for its excellent scientific environment; my students, postdocs and collaborators for the privilege of working with them; and my family for their frequent encouragement,” Lim said. “I have an optimistic view that all mathematics, esoteric as it may appear at first glance, could eventually be applied in the real world. This fellowship will allow me to explore higher-risk ideas in this vein.”

Lim, who joined the UChicago faculty in 2010, is also a member of the American Mathematical Society (AMS) and the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM).

His other honors include the 2019 Hans Schneider Prize from the International Linear Algebra Society, the SIAM James H. Wilkinson Prize in Numerical Analysis and Scientific Computing in 2017, and the Stephen Smale Prize from Foundations of Computational Mathematics in 2017.

Professor Manyuan Long is an evolutionary geneticist who focuses on how new genes arise in organisms. His work combines theoretical, computational and molecular experimental approaches to explore the functions of novel genes, the evolution of genes essential for development, interactions of genes with novel genes, sexual selection and conflict over novel genes, and the origin of de novo genes.


Long is Edna K. Papazian Distinguished Service Professor of Ecology and Evolution and has been on the UChicago faculty since 1997. He has trained dozens of young scientists, from undergraduates to graduates to postdoctoral fellows, including many have become professors or freelancers themselves. researchers from major universities and research institutes.

Long’s Guggenheim Fellowship will support the research and writing of a new book on the origin of genes. Over the past three decades, he and other scientists have made significant discoveries in phenomenology and concepts shaping the study of the origin of genes, and his proposed work aims to summarize the major discoveries that have led to conceptual innovations in the understanding of new evolutionary genes.

“I feel lucky and honored to win this scholarship, which I think is a kind of stamp of approval for the work I have done with the concept of genetic origin that I have proposed and explored since my studies. higher,” he said. “With this support, I will be able to focus on writing and related research at institutions in the United States and a few other countries over the next few years.”

Long has published hundreds of scientific articles, reviews and commentaries, as well as two books. He was also honored as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2014.

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