Wolf Prize Laureate in Mathematics 1983
Affiliation at the time of the award:
University of California at Berkeley, USA
“for outstanding contributions to global differential geometry, which have profoundly influenced all mathematics”.
Professor Shiing-Shen Chern has been the leading figure in global differential geometry. His earlier work on integral geometry, especially on the kinematic formula, was the source of most later work. His ground-breaking discovery of characteristic classes (now known as Chern classes) was the turning point that set global differential geometry on a course of tumultuous development. The field has blossomed under his leadership, and his results, together with those of his numerous students, have influenced the development of topology, algebraic geometry, complex manifolds, and most recently of gauge theories in mathematical physics.