AWM Microsoft Research Prize in Algebra and Number Theory 2014

Citation: Sophie Morel

The 2014 AWM Microsoft Research Prize in Algebra and Number Theory is presented to Professor Sophie Morel, in recognition of her exceptional research in number theory. Professor Morel received her doctorate in 2005 from l’Université Paris-Sud. After appointments at the Institute for Advanced Studies, the Clay Mathematics Institute and Harvard University, she is currently a Professor of Mathematics at Princeton University. Professor Morel is a powerful arithmetic algebraic geometer who has made fundamental contributions to the Langlands program. Her research has been called “spectacularly original, and technically very demanding.” Her research program has been favorably compared to that of several Fields medalists. She accomplished one of the main goals of the Langlands program by calculating the zeta functions of unitary and symplectic Shimura varieties in terms of the L-functions of the appropriate automorphic forms. To achieve this, she introduced an innovative t-structure on derived categories which had been missed by many experts. Her book ‘On the cohomology of certain noncompact Shimura varieties’ published in the Annals of Mathematics Studies series is described as a tour-de-force. Professor Morel found another remarkable application of her results on weighted cohomology. She gave a new geometric interpretation and conceptual proof of Brenti’s celebrated but mysterious combinatorial formula for Kazhdan-Lusztig polynomials, which are of central importance in representation theory. We would like to congratulate Professor Morel for her substantial achievements.