A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of

Even though the pure and applied viewpoints are distinct philosophical positions, in practice there is much overlap in the activity of pure and applied mathematicians. To develop accurate models for describing the real world, many applied mathematicians draw on tools and techniques that are often considered to be "pure" mathematics. On the other hand, many pure mathematicians draw on natural and social phenomena as inspiration for their abstract research.

Occupational Outlook: Mathematicians

Information on the occupation of mathematician from the US Department of Labor.

Although US-centric, a useful resource for anyone interested in a career as a mathematician. Learn what mathematicians do on a daily basis, where they work, how much they earn, and more.

A comprehensive list of detailed biographies.

The Mathematics Genealogy Project

Allows scholars to follow the succession of thesis advisors for most mathematicians, living or dead. *

Middle School Mathematician Project

Short biographies of select mathematicians assembled by middle school students.

Career Information for Students of Math and Aspiring Mathematicians

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MathMajor

{{Authority control Mathematical science occupations, . Mathematicians,

mathematics
Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as numbers (arithmetic and number theory), formulas and related structures (algebra), shapes and spaces in which they are contained (geometry), and quantities and their changes (cal ...

in their work, typically to solve mathematical problem
A mathematical problem is a problem that is amenable to being represented, analyzed, and possibly solved, with the methods of mathematics
Mathematics (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as quantity (number theory), ...

s.
Mathematicians are concerned with number
A number is a mathematical object
A mathematical object is an abstract concept arising in mathematics.
In the usual language of mathematics, an ''object'' is anything that has been (or could be) formally defined, and with which one may do deduct ...

s, data
Data (; ) are individual facts
A fact is something that is truth, true. The usual test for a statement of fact is verifiability—that is whether it can be demonstrated to correspond to experience. Standard reference works are often used ...

, quantity
Quantity is a property that can exist as a multitude or magnitude, which illustrate discontinuity and continuity. Quantities can be compared in terms of "more", "less", or "equal", or by assigning a numerical value in terms of a unit of measu ...

, structure
A structure is an arrangement and organization of interrelated elements in a material object or system
A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole.
A ...

, space
Space is the boundless three-dimensional
Three-dimensional space (also: 3-space or, rarely, tri-dimensional space) is a geometric setting in which three values (called parameter
A parameter (from the Ancient Greek language, Ancient Gre ...

, models, and change
Change or Changing may refer to:
Alteration
* Impermanence
Impermanence, also known as the philosophical problem
This is a list of the major unsolved problems in philosophy
Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundam ...

.
History

One of the earliest known mathematicians wereThales of Miletus
Thales of Miletus ( ; el, Θαλῆς
Thales of Miletus ( ; el, Θαλῆς (ὁ Μιλήσιος), ''Thalēs''; ) was a Greek mathematician
A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics
Mathematics (fr ...

(c. 624–c.546 BC); he has been hailed as the first true mathematician and the first known individual to whom a mathematical discovery has been attributed. He is credited with the first use of deductive reasoning applied to geometry, by deriving four corollaries to Thales' Theorem
In geometry
Geometry (from the grc, γεωμετρία; ''wikt:γῆ, geo-'' "earth", ''wikt:μέτρον, -metron'' "measurement") is, with arithmetic, one of the oldest branches of mathematics. It is concerned with properties of space t ...

.
Baudhayana
The are a group of Vedic Sanskrit
Vedic Sanskrit, or Vedic, is the name given by modern scholarship to the oldest, attested form of the Proto-Indo-Aryan language belonging to the Indo-Aryan subgroup of the Indo-European language
The Indo ...

(fl. c. 900 BCE) is the earliest known mathematician from India
India, officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ), is a country in South Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by area, seventh-largest country by area, the List of countries and dependencies by population, second-most populous ...

and is possibly the first mathematician in the world. He was the first to calculate the value of . Pythagoras's theorem today is already found in Baudhayana sutras
The are a group of Vedic Sanskrit
Vedic Sanskrit was an ancient language of the Indo-AryanIndo-Aryan refers to:
* Indo-Aryan languages
** Indo-Aryan superstrate in Mitanni or Mitanni-Aryan
* Indo-Aryan peoples, the various peoples speaking th ...

which was written several years before the age of Pythagoras
Pythagoras of Samos, or simply ; in Ionian Greek () was an ancient Ionians, Ionian Ancient Greek philosophy, Greek philosopher and the eponymous founder of Pythagoreanism. His political and religious teachings were well known in Magna Graec ...

.
The number of known mathematicians grew when Pythagoras of Samos
Pythagoras of Samos, or simply ; in Ionian Greek ( 570 – c. 495 BC) was an ancient Ionian Greek philosopher and the eponymous founder of Pythagoreanism
Pythagoreanism originated in the 6th century BC, based on the teachings and belief ...

(c. 582–c. 507 BC) established the Pythagorean School
Pythagorean, meaning of or pertaining to the ancient Ionian mathematician, philosopher, and music theorist Pythagoras, may refer to:
Philosophy
* Pythagoreanism, the esoteric and metaphysical beliefs purported to have been held by Pythagoras
* Neo ...

, whose doctrine it was that mathematics ruled the universe and whose motto was "All is number". It was the Pythagoreans who coined the term "mathematics", and with whom the study of mathematics for its own sake begins.
The first woman mathematician recorded by history was Hypatia
Hypatia, Koine pronunciation (born 350–370; died 415 AD) was a Hellenistic
The Hellenistic period covers the period of Mediterranean history between the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC and the emergence of the Roman Empir ...

of Alexandria (AD 350 – 415). She succeeded her father as Librarian at the Great Library and wrote many works on applied mathematics. Because of a political dispute, the Christian community in Alexandria punished her, presuming she was involved, by stripping her naked and scraping off her skin with clamshells (some say roofing tiles).
Science and mathematics in the Islamic world during the Middle Ages followed various models and modes of funding varied based primarily on scholars. It was extensive patronage and strong intellectual policies implemented by specific rulers that allowed scientific knowledge to develop in many areas. Funding for translation of scientific texts in other languages was ongoing throughout the reign of certain caliphs, and it turned out that certain scholars became experts in the works they translated and in turn received further support for continuing to develop certain sciences. As these sciences received wider attention from the elite, more scholars were invited and funded to study particular sciences. An example of a translator and mathematician who benefited from this type of support was al-Khawarizmi
Muḥammad ibn Mūsā al-Khwārizmī ( fa, محمد بن موسی خوارزمی, Moḥammad ben Musā Khwārazmi; ), Arabized as al-Khwarizmi and formerly Latinized as ''Algorithmi'', was a Persian polymath who produced vastly influential w ...

. A notable feature of many scholars working under Muslim rule in medieval times is that they were often polymaths. Examples include the work on optics
Optics is the branch of physics
Physics is the that studies , its , its and behavior through , and the related entities of and . "Physical science is that department of knowledge which relates to the order of nature, or, in other wo ...

, maths
Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as numbers (arithmetic and number theory), formulas and related structures (algebra), shapes and spaces in which they are contained (geometry), and quantities and their changes (calc ...

and astronomy
Astronomy (from el, ἀστρονομία, literally meaning the science that studies the laws of the stars) is a natural science that studies astronomical object, celestial objects and celestial event, phenomena. It uses mathematics, phys ...

of Ibn al-Haytham
Ḥasan Ibn al-Haytham (Latinization of names, Latinized as Alhazen ; full name ; ) was a Muslim Arab Mathematics in medieval Islam, mathematician, Astronomy in the medieval Islamic world, astronomer, and Physics in the medieval Islamic world, ...

.
The Renaissance
The Renaissance ( , ) , from , with the same meanings. is a period
Period may refer to:
Common uses
* Era, a length or span of time
* Full stop (or period), a punctuation mark
Arts, entertainment, and media
* Period (music), a concept in ...

brought an increased emphasis on mathematics and science to Europe. During this period of transition from a mainly feudal and ecclesiastical culture to a predominantly secular one, many notable mathematicians had other occupations: Luca Pacioli
Fra Luca Bartolomeo de Pacioli (sometimes ''Paccioli'' or ''Paciolo''; 1447 – 19 June 1517) was an Italian mathematician
A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics
Mathematics (from Ancient Greek, G ...

(founder of accounting
Accounting or Accountancy is the measurement
'
Measurement is the number, numerical quantification (science), quantification of the variable and attribute (research), attributes of an object or event, which can be used to compare with other ob ...

); Niccolò Fontana Tartaglia
Niccolò Fontana Tartaglia (; 1499/1500 – 13 December 1557) was an Italian mathematician
A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics
Mathematics (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ) includes the study of such ...

(notable engineer and bookkeeper); Gerolamo Cardano
Gerolamo (also Girolamo or Geronimo) Cardano (; french: link=no, Jérôme Cardan; la, Hieronymus Cardanus; 24 September 1501 (O. S.)– 21 September 1576 (O. S.)) was an Italian polymath
A polymath ( el, πολυμαθής, ', "having learn ...

(earliest founder of probability and binomial expansion); Robert Recorde
Robert Recorde (c. 1512 – 1558) was a Welsh physician and mathematician. He invented the equals sign (=) and also introduced the pre-existing plus sign
The plus and minus signs, and , are mathematical symbols used to represent the notions ...

(physician) and François Viète
François Viète, Seigneur de la Bigotière ( la, Franciscus Vieta; 1540 – 23 February 1603) was a French mathematician
A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics
Mathematics (from Ancient Greek, Gre ...

(lawyer).
As time passed, many mathematicians gravitated towards universities. An emphasis on free thinking and experimentation had begun in Britain's oldest universities beginning in the seventeenth century at Oxford with the scientists Robert Hooke
Robert Hooke FRS
FRS may also refer to:
Government and politics
* Facility Registry System, a centrally managed Environmental Protection Agency database that identifies places of environmental interest in the United States
* Family Resources ...

and Robert Boyle
Robert Boyle (; 25 January 1627 – 31 December 1691) was an Anglo-Irish natural philosopher, chemist, physicist, and inventor. Boyle is largely regarded today as the first modern chemist, and therefore one of the founders of modern che ...

, and at Cambridge where Isaac Newton
Sir Isaac Newton (25 December 1642 – 20 March 1726/27) was an English mathematician
A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics
Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics a ...

was Lucasian Professor of Mathematics & Physics. Moving into the 19th century, the objective of universities all across Europe evolved from teaching the "regurgitation of knowledge" to "encouragproductive thinking." In 1810, Humboldt convinced the King of Prussia to build a university in Berlin based on Friedrich Schleiermacher
Friedrich Daniel Ernst Schleiermacher (; November 21, 1768 – February 12, 1834) was a German Reformed
Calvinism (also called the Reformed tradition, Reformed Christianity, Reformed Protestantism, or the Reformed faith) is a major ...

's liberal ideas; the goal was to demonstrate the process of the discovery of knowledge and to teach students to "take account of fundamental laws of science in all their thinking." Thus, seminars and laboratories started to evolve.
British universities of this period adopted some approaches familiar to the Italian and German universities, but as they already enjoyed substantial freedoms and autonomy
In developmental psychology
Developmental psychology is the scientific
Science () is a systematic enterprise that Scientific method, builds and organizes knowledge in the form of Testability, testable explanations and predictions ...

the changes there had begun with the Age of Enlightenment
The Age of Enlightenment (also known as the Age of Reason or simply the Enlightenment); ger, Aufklärung, "Enlightenment"; it, L'Illuminismo, "Enlightenment"; pl, Oświecenie , "Enlightenment"; pt, Iluminismo, "Enlightenment"; es, link= ...

, the same influences that inspired Humboldt. The Universities of Oxford
Oxford () is a city in England. It is the county town and only city of Oxfordshire. In 2017, its population was estimated at 152,450. It is northwest of London, southeast of Birmingham, and northeast of Bristol. The city is home to the Unive ...

and Cambridge
Cambridge ( ) is a university city and the county town
In the United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' ...

emphasized the importance of research
Research is "creative and systematic work undertaken to increase the stock of knowledge". It involves the collection, organization and analysis of information to increase understanding of a topic or issue. A research project may be an expa ...

, arguably more authentically implementing Humboldt's idea of a university than even German universities, which were subject to state authority. Overall, science (including mathematics) became the focus of universities in the 19th and 20th centuries. Students could conduct research in seminars
A seminar is a form of academic
An academy ( Attic Greek: Ἀκαδήμεια; Koine Greek Ἀκαδημία) is an institution of secondary or tertiary higher learning, research, or honorary membership.
Academia is the worldwide group comp ...

or laboratories
A laboratory (, ; colloquially lab) is a facility that provides controlled conditions in which scientific
Science (from the Latin
Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-E ...

and began to produce doctoral theses with more scientific content. According to Humboldt, the mission of the University of Berlin
Humboldt University of Berlin (german: Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, abbreviated HU Berlin) is a public
In public relations and communication science, publics are groups of individual people, and the public (a.k.a. the general public) ...

was to pursue scientific knowledge. The German university system fostered professional, bureaucratically regulated scientific research performed in well-equipped laboratories, instead of the kind of research done by private and individual scholars in Great Britain and France. In fact, Rüegg asserts that the German system is responsible for the development of the modern research university because it focused on the idea of "freedom of scientific research, teaching and study."
Required education

Mathematicians usually cover a breadth of topics within mathematics in theirundergraduate education
Undergraduate education ieducationconducted after secondary education
Secondary education covers two phases on the International Standard Classification of Education
The International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) is a statisti ...

, and then proceed to specialize in topics of their own choice at the graduate level. In some universities, a qualifying exam serves to test both the breadth and depth of a student's understanding of mathematics; the students, who pass, are permitted to work on a doctoral dissertation
A thesis or dissertation (abbreviated diss.) is a document submitted in support of candidature for an academic degree
An academic degree is a qualification awarded to students upon successful completion of a course of study in higher educa ...

.
Activities

Applied mathematics

Mathematicians involved with solving problems with applications in real life are calledapplied mathematician
A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics in their work, typically to solve mathematical problems.
Mathematicians are concerned with numbers, data, quantity, mathematical structure, structure, space, Mathematical m ...

s. Applied mathematicians are mathematical scientists who, with their specialized knowledge and professional
A professional is a member of a profession or any person who earns a living from a specified professional activity. The term also describes the standards of education and training that prepare members of the profession with the particular knowled ...

methodology, approach many of the imposing problems presented in related scientific fields. With professional focus on a wide variety of problems, theoretical systems, and localized constructs, applied mathematicians work regularly in the study and formulation of mathematical models
A mathematical model is a description of a system
A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole.
A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, ...

. Mathematicians and applied mathematicians are considered to be two of the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) careers.
The discipline of applied mathematics
Applied mathematics is the application of mathematical methods by different fields such as physics
Physics is the natural science that studies matter, its Elementary particle, fundamental constituents, its Motion (physics), motion and be ...

concerns itself with mathematical methods that are typically used in science, engineering, business, and industry; thus, "applied mathematics" is a mathematical science
The mathematical sciences are a group of areas of study that includes, in addition to mathematics
Mathematics (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as quantity (number theory), mathematical structure, structure (algeb ...

with specialized knowledge. The term "applied mathematics" also describes the professional
A professional is a member of a profession or any person who earns a living from a specified professional activity. The term also describes the standards of education and training that prepare members of the profession with the particular knowled ...

specialty in which mathematicians work on problems, often concrete but sometimes abstract. As professionals focused on problem solving, ''applied mathematicians'' look into the ''formulation, study, and use of mathematical models'' in science
Science () is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge
Knowledge is a familiarity or awareness, of someone or something, such as facts
A fact is something that is truth, true. The usual test for a statement of ...

, engineering
Engineering is the use of scientific principles to design and build machines, structures, and other items, including bridges, tunnels, roads, vehicles, and buildings. The discipline of engineering encompasses a broad range of more speciali ...

, business
Business is the activity of making one's living or making money by producing or buying and selling products (such as goods and services). Simply put, it is "any activity or enterprise entered into for profit."
Having a business name
A trad ...

, and other areas of mathematical practice.
Pure mathematics

Pure mathematics
Pure mathematics is the study of mathematical concepts independently of any application outside mathematics
Mathematics (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as quantity (number theory), mathematical structure, struc ...

is mathematics
Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as numbers (arithmetic and number theory), formulas and related structures (algebra), shapes and spaces in which they are contained (geometry), and quantities and their changes (cal ...

that studies entirely abstract concept
Concepts are defined as abstract ideas
A mental representation (or cognitive representation), in philosophy of mind
Philosophy of mind is a branch of philosophy that studies the ontology and nature of the mind and its relationship with the bo ...

s. From the eighteenth century onwards, this was a recognized category of mathematical activity, sometimes characterized as ''speculative mathematics'', and at variance with the trend towards meeting the needs of navigation
Navigation is a field of study that focuses on the process of monitoring and controlling the movement of a craft or vehicle from one place to another.Bowditch, 2003:799. The field of navigation includes four general categories: land navigation, ...

, astronomy
Astronomy (from el, ἀστρονομία, literally meaning the science that studies the laws of the stars) is a natural science that studies astronomical object, celestial objects and celestial event, phenomena. It uses mathematics, phys ...

, physics
Physics is the natural science that studies matter, its Elementary particle, fundamental constituents, its Motion (physics), motion and behavior through Spacetime, space and time, and the related entities of energy and force. "Physical scie ...

, economics
Economics () is a social science that studies the Production (economics), production, distribution (economics), distribution, and Consumption (economics), consumption of goods and services.
Economics focuses on the behaviour and interact ...

, engineering
Engineering is the use of scientific principles to design and build machines, structures, and other items, including bridges, tunnels, roads, vehicles, and buildings. The discipline of engineering encompasses a broad range of more speciali ...

, and other applications.
Another insightful view put forth is that ''pure mathematics is not necessarily applied mathematics
Applied mathematics is the application of mathematical methods by different fields such as physics
Physics is the natural science that studies matter, its Elementary particle, fundamental constituents, its Motion (physics), motion and be ...

'': it is possible to study abstract entities with respect to their intrinsic nature, and not be concerned with how they manifest in the real world.Andy Magid, Letter from the Editor, in ''Notices of the AMS'', November 2005, American Mathematical Society, p.1173Even though the pure and applied viewpoints are distinct philosophical positions, in practice there is much overlap in the activity of pure and applied mathematicians. To develop accurate models for describing the real world, many applied mathematicians draw on tools and techniques that are often considered to be "pure" mathematics. On the other hand, many pure mathematicians draw on natural and social phenomena as inspiration for their abstract research.

Mathematics teaching

Many professional mathematicians also engage in the teaching of mathematics. Duties may include: * teaching university mathematics courses; * supervising undergraduate and graduate research; and * serving on academic committees.Consulting

Many careers in mathematics outside of universities involve consulting. For instance, actuaries assemble and analyze data to estimate the probability and likely cost of the occurrence of an event such as death, sickness, injury, disability, or loss of property. Actuaries also address financial questions, including those involving the level of pension contributions required to produce a certain retirement income and the way in which a company should invest resources to maximize its return on investments in light of potential risk. Using their broad knowledge, actuaries help design and price insurance policies, pension plans, and other financial strategies in a manner which will help ensure that the plans are maintained on a sound financial basis. As another example, mathematical finance will derive and extend the Mathematical model, mathematical or numerical models without necessarily establishing a link to financial theory, taking observed market prices as input. Mathematical consistency is required, not compatibility with economic theory. Thus, for example, while a financial economist might study the structural reasons why a company may have a certainshare price
A share price is the price of a single share
Share may refer to:
* Share, to make joint use of a resource (such as food, money, or space); see Sharing
* Share (finance), a stock or other financial security (such as a mutual fund)
* Share, Kwara, a ...

, a financial mathematician may take the share price as a given, and attempt to use stochastic calculus
Stochastic calculus is a branch of mathematics
Mathematics (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as quantity (number theory), mathematical structure, structure (algebra), space (geometry), and calculus, change (math ...

to obtain the corresponding value of derivative
In mathematics
Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as numbers (arithmetic and number theory), formulas and related structures (algebra), shapes and spaces in which they are contained (geometry), and quantities ...

s of the stock
In finance, stock (also capital stock) consists of all of the shares
In financial markets
A financial market is a market in which people trade financial securities and derivatives at low transaction costs. Some of the securities i ...

(''see: Valuation of options
In finance, a price (premium) is paid or received for purchasing or selling options. This article discusses the calculation of this premium in general. For further detail, see for discussion of the mathematics, Financial engineering
Financial eng ...

; Financial modeling
Financial modeling is the task of building an abstract representation (a model) of a real world financial
Finance is the study of financial institutions, financial markets and how they operate within the financial system. It is concerned wit ...

'').
Occupations

According to theDictionary of Occupational Titles
A dictionary is a listing of lexemes from the lexicon of one or more specific languages, often arranged Alphabetical order, alphabetically (or by radical-and-stroke sorting, radical and stroke for ideographic languages), which may include inf ...

occupations in mathematics include the following.
* Mathematician
* Operations-Research Analyst
* Mathematical Statistician
* Mathematical Technician
* Actuary
An actuary is a business professional who deals with the measurement and management of risk and uncertainty. The name of the corresponding field is actuarial science. These risks can affect both sides of the balance sheet and require investment m ...

* Applied Statistician
* Weight Analyst
Prizes in mathematics

There is noNobel Prize
The Nobel Prizes ( ; sv, Nobelpriset ; no, Nobelprisen ) are five separate prizes that, according to Alfred Nobel
Alfred Bernhard Nobel ( , ; 21 October 1833 – 10 December 1896) was a Swedish chemist, engineer, inventor, busines ...

in mathematics, though sometimes mathematicians have won the Nobel Prize in a different field, such as economics or physics. Prominent prizes in mathematics include the Abel Prize, the Chern Medal
The Chern Medal is an international award recognizing outstanding lifelong achievement of the highest level in the field of mathematics. The prize is given at the International Congress of Mathematicians (ICM), which is held every four years.
Int ...

, the Fields Medal
The Fields Medal is a prize awarded to two, three, or four mathematician
A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics
Mathematics (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as quantity ...

, the Gauss PrizeThe Carl Friedrich Gauss Prize for Applications of Mathematics is a mathematics
Mathematics (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as quantity (number theory), mathematical structure, structure (algebra), space (geometr ...

, the Nemmers Prize, the Balzan Prize
The International Balzan Prize Foundation awards four annual monetary prizes to people or organizations who have made outstanding achievements in the fields of humanities, natural sciences, culture, as well as for endeavours for peace and the br ...

, the Crafoord Prize
The Crafoord Prize is an annual science prize established in 1980 by Holger Crafoord, a Swedish industrialist, and his wife Anna-Greta Crafoord. The Prize is awarded in partnership between the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences
The Royal Swedish A ...

, the Shaw Prize
The Shaw Prize is an annual award first presented by the Shaw Prize Foundation in 2004. Established in 2002 in Hong Kong
Hong Kong (, ), officially the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China (HKSAR) (), is ...

, the Steele Prize
The Leroy P. Steele Prizes are awarded every year by the American Mathematical Society
The American Mathematical Society (AMS) is an association of professional mathematicians dedicated to the interests of mathematics, mathematical research an ...

, the Wolf Prize
The Wolf Prize is an international award
An award, sometimes called a distinction, is something given to a recipient as a token of recognition of excellence in a certain field. When the token is a medal, ribbon or other item designed for wearin ...

, the Schock Prize
The Rolf Schock Prizes were established and endowed by bequest of philosopher and artist Rolf Schock (1933–1986). The prizes were first awarded in Stockholm
Stockholm is the Capital city, capital of Sweden. It has the most populous urba ...

, and the Nevanlinna Prize The Rolf Nevanlinna Prize, known from 2022 as the IMU Abacus Medal, is awarded once every four years at the International Congress of Mathematicians, hosted by the International Mathematical Union (IMU), for outstanding contributions in Mathematical ...

.
The American Mathematical Society
The American Mathematical Society (AMS) is an association of professional mathematicians dedicated to the interests of mathematics, mathematical research and scholarship, and serves the national and international community through its publicatio ...

, Association for Women in Mathematics
The Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM) is a professional society whose mission is to encourage women and girls to study and to have active careers in the mathematical sciences, and to promote equal opportunity for and the equal treatment of ...

, and other mathematical societies offer several prizes aimed at increasing the representation of women and minorities in the future of mathematics.
Mathematical autobiographies

Several well known mathematicians have written autobiographies in part to explain to a general audience what it is about mathematics that has made them want to devote their lives to its study. These provide some of the best glimpses into what it means to be a mathematician. The following list contains some works that are not autobiographies, but rather essays on mathematics and mathematicians with strong autobiographical elements. * ''The Book of My Life'' –Girolamo Cardano
Gerolamo (also Girolamo or Geronimo) Cardano (; french: link=no, Jérôme Cardan; la, Hieronymus Cardanus; 24 September 1501 (O. S.)– 21 September 1576 (O. S.)) was an Italian polymath
A polymath ( el, πολυμαθής, ', "having learn ...

* ''A Mathematician's Apology
''A Mathematician's Apology'' is a 1940 essay by British mathematician G. H. Hardy, which offers a defence of the pursuit of mathematics. Central to Hardy's " apology" — in the sense of a formal justification or defence (as in Plato
...

'' - G.H. Hardy
* ''A Mathematician's Miscellany
''A Mathematician's Miscellany'' is an autobiography and collection of anecdotes by John Edensor Littlewood. It is now out of print but ''Littlewood's Miscellany'' is its successor, published by Cambridge University Press and edited by Béla Bollob ...

'' (republished as Littlewood's miscellany) - J. E. Littlewood
* ''I Am a Mathematician'' - Norbert Wiener
Norbert Wiener (November 26, 1894 – March 18, 1964) was an American mathematician
A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics
Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as numbers ( an ...

* ''I Want to be a Mathematician'' - Paul R. Halmos
* ''Adventures of a Mathematician'' - Stanislaw Ulam
Stanisław Marcin Ulam (; 13 April 1909 – 13 May 1984) was a Polish scientist in the fields of mathematics and nuclear physics. He participated in the Manhattan Project
The Manhattan Project was a research and development
R ...

* ''Enigmas of Chance'' - Mark Kac
Mark Kac ( ; Polish: ''Marek Kac''; August 3, 1914 – October 26, 1984) was a Polish American
Polish Americans ( pl, Polonia amerykańska) are Americans who have total or partial Poles, Polish ancestry. There are an estimated 9.15 million self- ...

* ''Random Curves'' - Neal Koblitz
Neal I. Koblitz (born December 24, 1948) is a Professor of Mathematics at the University of Washington. He is also an adjunct professor with the Centre for Applied Cryptographic Research at the University of Waterloo. He is the creator of hyperel ...

* '' Love and Math'' - Edward Frenkel
Edward Vladimirovich Frenkel (, sometimes spelled Э́двард Фре́нкель; born May 2, 1968) is a Russian-American mathematician
A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics
Mathematics (from Ancient ...

* ''Mathematics Without Apologies'' - Michael Harris
See also

* Lists of mathematicians *Human computer
NACA High Speed Flight Station "Computer Room" (1949)
The term "computer", in use from the early 17th century (the first known written reference dates from 1613), meant "one who computes": a person performing mathematical calculations, before e ...

* Mathematical joke
A mathematical joke is a form of humor
Humour (Commonwealth English
The use of the English language
English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval Engla ...

* ''A Mathematician's Apology
''A Mathematician's Apology'' is a 1940 essay by British mathematician G. H. Hardy, which offers a defence of the pursuit of mathematics. Central to Hardy's " apology" — in the sense of a formal justification or defence (as in Plato
...

''
* ''Men of Mathematics
''Men of Mathematics: The Lives and Achievements of the Great Mathematicians from Zeno to Poincaré'' is a book on the history of mathematics published in 1937 by Scottish-born American mathematician and science fiction writer Eric Temple Bell, ...

'' (book)
* Mental calculator
Human calculator is a term to describe a person with a prodigious ability in some area of mental calculation
Mental calculation consists of arithmetical calculations using only the human brain, with no help from any supplies (such as pencil and ...

* Timeline of ancient Greek mathematiciansThis is a timeline of Ancient Greek mathematics, ancient Greek mathematicians (see also Chronology of ancient Greek mathematicians).
Timeline
Historians traditionally place the beginning of Greek mathematics proper to the age of Thales of Miletu ...

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Bibliography

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*External links

Occupational Outlook: Mathematicians

Information on the occupation of mathematician from the US Department of Labor.

Although US-centric, a useful resource for anyone interested in a career as a mathematician. Learn what mathematicians do on a daily basis, where they work, how much they earn, and more.

A comprehensive list of detailed biographies.

The Mathematics Genealogy Project

Allows scholars to follow the succession of thesis advisors for most mathematicians, living or dead. *

Middle School Mathematician Project

Short biographies of select mathematicians assembled by middle school students.

Career Information for Students of Math and Aspiring Mathematicians

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MathMajor

{{Authority control Mathematical science occupations, . Mathematicians,