◀ ▲ ▶History / 20th-century / Person: Serre, Jean-Pierre Albert Achille
Person: Serre, Jean-Pierre Albert Achille
Jean-Pierre Serre is a French mathematician who has made important contributions to algebraic topology, algebraic geometry, and algebraic number theory. He was a member of Bourbaki.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- In 1932 Jean-Pierre began his primary school education at the École de Vauvert.
- He coached Serre for the Concours General in mathematics which he sat in 1944 and was placed first.
- Serre was awarded his Bachelier ès sciences et ès lettres in 1944 but remained at the Lycée until 1945 preparing to take the entrance examination to enter the École Normale Supérieure in Paris.
- From 1945 to 1948 Serre studied at the École Normale Supérieure and was awarded his Agrégé des sciences mathematique in 1948.
- Around the time that Serre joined the Bourbaki group, others such as Roger Godement, Pierre Samuel and Jacques Dixmier also joined.
- From 1948 to 1954 Serre held positions at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in Paris, first as attaché and then as chargé de recherches.
- One of Serre's fellow students was Alexander Grothendieck and he also attended the seminar.
- Grothendieck and Serre became friends at this time.
- In 1954 Serre went to the University of Nancy where he worked until 1956.
- Serre then gave up and his inaugural lecture was never published.
- His permanent position in the Collège de France allowed Serre to spend quite a lot of time making research visits.
- Here is a list of the universities where Serre delivered courses (in alphabetical order): Algiers (1965, 1966), Bonn (1976), CalTech (1997), Eugene (1998), Geneva (1999), Göttingen (1970), McGill (1967), Mexico (1956), Moscow (1961, 1984), Princeton (1952, 1999), Singapore (1985), U.C.L.A. (2001), Utrect (1974).
- Serre's early work was on spectral sequences.
- Serre did not invent spectral sequences, these were invented by the French mathematician Jean Leray.
- However, in 1951, Serre applied spectral sequences to the study of the relations between the homology groups of fibre, total space and base space in a fibration.
- Serre's work led to topologists realising the importance of spectral sequences.
- The Serre spectral sequence provided a tool to work effectively with the homology of fiberings.
- For this work on spectral sequences and his work developing complex variable theory in terms of sheaves, Serre was awarded a Fields Medal at the International Congress of Mathematicians in 1954.
- Serre's theorem led to rapid progress not only in homotopy theory but in algebraic topology and homological algebra in general.
- Over many years Serre has published many highly influential texts covering a wide range of mathematics.
- These texts, which show the topics Serre has worked on, are Homologie singulière des espaces fibrés Ⓣ(Singular homology of fiber spaces) (1951), Faisceaux algébriques cohérents Ⓣ(Consistent algebraic beams) (1955), Groupes d'algébriques et corps de classes Ⓣ(Algebraic Groups and classes of body) (1959), Corps locaux Ⓣ(Local rings) (1962), Cohomologie galoisienne Ⓣ(Galois cohomology) (1964), Algèbre Locale.
- These books are outstanding and led to Serre being honoured.
- Any one of Serre's numerous other books might have served as the basis of this award.
- Serre brings his whole mathematical personality to bear on the material of these books; they are alive with the breadth of real mathematics and are an example to all of how to write for effect, clarity, and impact.
- Serre has received numerous awards.
- After Jens Erik Fenstad, chair of the Abel Board (organizer of the prize events), had given a short speech, the Abel laureate, Jean-Pierre Serre, laid a wreath at the monument.
- Serre's lecture was entitled "Prime numbers, equations and modular forms".
- Later in the afternoon, Jean-Pierre Serre received several parties of journalists for interviews.
- On Tuesday morning Serre and representatives of the Abel Committee and the Abel Board met the world press: ten journalists from Norway, England, France, and Germany.
- King Harald and Queen Sonja attended, and after some speeches the king presented the prize to Serre.
Born 15 September 1926, Bages, Pyrénées Orientales, France.
View full biography at MacTutor
Tags relevant for this person:
Prize Abel, Bourbaki, Prize Fields Medal, Prize Wolf
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive