Person: Olech, Czeslaw
Czesław Olech was a Polish mathematician who worked in differential equations and control theory.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- The two-pronged attack - the Germans from the west and the Russians from the east - quickly defeated the Polish army and the district that Olech was living in was occupied by German forces.
- It was in Kielce that Olech attended the specialist mathematical school, entering the Stefan Zeromski High School there in 1947.
- After passing the maturity examination, Olech still had no very definite aims concerning the subjects he wanted to study.
- Olech enjoyed all three courses, which were well delivered, but he had special praise for Ważewski's style of lecturing: the most vibrant of the three, and the class had to be very alert since he often addressed questions to his audience.
- Olech not only had excellent teachers, he also had some exceptionally talented fellow students.
- After completing the three-year first degree, Olech was accepted onto the course leading to a Master's Degree (essentially equivalent to a doctorate).
- He worked at the University of Science and Technology in Kraków and he offered Olech a job as his assistant.
- Olech accepted and began working for Gołąb on 18 August 1952.
- Let us add that the joint Gołąb-Olech paper, entitled Contribution à la théorie de la formule simpsonienne des quadratures approchées Ⓣ(Contribution to the theory of approximate Simpson's quadrature formula), was published in French and appeared in 1954.
- Also note that the Rector of the University of Science and Technology, who presented Olech with his award, was the engineer and geologist Zygmunt Kowalczyk (1908-1985).
- After being awarded a three-year scholarship to undertake research, Olech had to give up his position as an assistant at the University of Science and Technology.
- This led to Lefschetz inviting Olech to spend a year in the United States.
- Olech spent the academic year 1960-61 at the Research Institute of Advanced Studies (RIAS) in Baltimore where Lefschetz was director.
- During Olech's year at Princeton, Lawrence Markus lectured on problems of global stability of differential equations and Olech was able to generalise some of the results.
- Returning to Poland in 1961, Olech worked on his habilitation thesis which he submitted in the following year.
- Olech became the first director of this International Mathematical Centre, a position he held until 1991.
- In 1979 Olech became a member of the Executive Committee of the International Mathematical Union.
- Olech was chairman of the Polish Organizing Committee for the Congress which was responsible for all the arrangements.
- Olech had not only succeeded in ensuring that the Congress go ahead as planned in 1983 but he had also saved the International Mathematical Union from a damaging situation.
- At the opening ceremony of the Congress, which took place in the Palace of Culture on 16 August 1983, Olech was elected President of the Warsaw Congress.
- In the case of Czeslaw Olech's results one should not ask for the number of citations (although some of them have an impressive number), because some of his results are already treated as being classic so do not require precise references.
- Olech has received many honours for his outstanding contributions to mathematics.
Born 22 May 1931, Pińczów, Poland. Died 1 July 2015, Warsaw, Poland.
View full biography at MacTutor
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Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive