EMS Handbook

5.1 EMS Prizes


The EMS Prizes were established by the Organizing Committee of the first European Congress of Mathematics in 1989, and were sponsored by Jacques Chirac, who was at that time the mayor of Paris. Since then they are presented every four years at the European Congresses of Mathematics.

Principal guidelines

At each ECM up to ten EMS Prizes are awarded to young researchers in recognition of excellent contributions in mathematics.

Any European mathematician who has not reached his/her 35th birthday at the time of nomination, and who has not previously received the prize, is eligible for an EMS Prize. A female nominee can have the age limit extended by one, two, or three years in case she has one, two, or three or more children, respectively. For males the addition is exactly the time spent on parental leave. The same exact count could apply to other possible obstacles, a serious illness, military service, etc., should the extension be asked for.

Mathematicians are defined to be European if they are of European nationality or their normal place of work is within Europe. Europe is defined to be the union of any country or part of a country which is geographically within Europe or that has a corporate member of the EMS based in that country. Prizes are to be awarded for work accepted for publication before October 31 of the year prior to the ECM.

Description of the award

Prizes sponsored by the European Mathematical Society (EMS) Publishing House GmbH and Compositio (Compositio support has to be negotiated for each congress separately; it is not automatic). Each award comprises a certificate including a citation and a cash prize of €5,000. Congress organizers together with Compositio transfer the money to the winners.

Prize Committee selection guidelines

The Prize Committee endeavour to ensure a fair balance of nominations as regards the following criteria: speciality within mathematics, nationality, and geographical base. The Prize Committee is selected by the EC at the same time as the Scientific Committee, and it should consist of 10–15 high level specialists covering all fields of mathematics.

Nominations for the award

The Prize Committee is responsible for the evaluation of nominations. Nominations are confidential; a nomination should not be made known to the nominee(s). Self-nominations are not acceptable. Nominations can be made by anyone, including members of the Prize Committee but only before the deadline; the Prize Committee chair will reveal the list to the committee only after the nominations are closed. It is the responsibility of the nominator to provide all relevant information to the Prize Committee, including a résumé and documentation. The nomination for each award must be accompanied by a written justification and a citation of about 100 words that can be read at the award ceremony. The prizes cannot be shared.

The call for nominations is published on the EMS website and sent to the EMS corporate and individual members in autumn (October – November) two years prior the ECM.

Nominations must be sent to the chair of the Prize Committe and EMS Secretariat, ems-office@helsinki.fi, not later than on November 30 of the year prior to the ECM.

Award presentation

Before ECM the winner names are kept secret. The prize recipients are invited to present their work at the congress.