Simon Marais Lecture

An abstract image of a red and blue colored twisted shape

The inaugural Simon Marais Lecture - The mathematics of déjà vu

Presented by Professor Amie Wilkinson, University of Chicago

How can we mix and unmix two ideal gases in a box? How can we describe the deep properties of the prime numbers or the existence of exoplanets in nearby solar systems?

Join the University of Chicago's Professor Wilkinson as she answers these seemingly disparate questions using a mathematical version of déjà vu called 'recurrence'. Recurrence is a simple and yet powerful concept: we say that a motion of a space is recurrent if, given enough time, it eventually returns to its original configuration, allowing for a small amount of error.

Dynamics is an exciting area of mathematics concerned with the motion of spaces ("dynamical systems") over time. Originally developed in the late nineteenth century, it continues to have applications in a wide variety of fields such as physics, biology, chemistry, medicine and economics.

Thursday 27 April 2017
5.45 – 7pm
Messel Lecture Theatre 4002
Sydney Nanoscience Hub
University of Sydney

Lecture recording


We're live at the inaugural Simon Marais Lecture, The mathematics of déjà vu, with Professor Amie Wilkinson from the University of Chicago.

Posted by Faculty of Science, University of Sydney on Thursday, 27 April 2017

About Dr Simon Marais

Dr Simon Marais

Dr Simon Marais

Dr Simon Marais was one of Australia’s most-respected investors, remembered for his extraordinary intelligence, uncompromising integrity and fearless attitude. He had a wonderfully adventurous spirit, thirst for knowledge and a passion for conservation.

After obtaining a Master of Science at Stellenbosch University and a PhD in theoretical physics at Cambridge, he brought a compelling new style of ‘contrarian’ investing to the Australian funds management industry. Working as Founder, Chief Executive and portfolio manager at fund manager Allan Gray Australia, Chairman of Allan Gray South Africa and previously as head of research at the global investment management firm Orbis Group, he built a reputation as the outstanding asset manager of his generation.

A constant source of inspiration to friends, colleagues and the mathematics students he tutored in his spare time, his essential optimism and leadership endures.