CRM-Fields Institute Prize 2001


Dr. William Tutte was born in Newmarket, England and was educated at Cambridge University. After receiving the Ph.D. Degree from Cambridge in 1948, he came in that year to Canada to join the Faculty of the University of Toronto. Within that context he rose to become the leading world figure in graph and matroid theories. In graph theory he established fundamental results for matching, connectivity, symmetry in graphs, reconstruction, colouring, Hamiltonian circuits, graphs on higher surfaces, graph enumeration and graph polynomials. In matroid theory, he is still the single most important pioneer. One deep result is his characterization of regular matroids in terms of excluded minors. Another is his characterization of graphic matroids. These have provided the foundation for substantial structural work in his area.

Tutte joined the Faculty of the University of Waterloo in 1962, just five years after its founding. He has contributed greatly to creating its character and establishing its reputation in combinatorial mathematics. He was an important ingredient in the recipe that produced the Faculty of Mathematics in 1967. He was named Honorary Director of the Center for Cryptographic Research in 1988. He continues to be a vital part of this University's life. Tutte was the Editor-in-chief of the Journal of Combinatorial Theory in its early years, and a member of editorial boards of a number of other research journals. He is a fellow both of the Royal Society of Canada and of the Royal Society of London.


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