“Post-80s” Mathematician from ECNU Wins “2020 Xplorer Prize”


On September 25, the list of winners of the 2nd “Xplorer Prize” was revealed. Fifty young scientists in nine fields won the prize. Liu Gang, a “post-80s” professor from the School of Mathematical Sciences, ECNU, was on the list.

Prof. Liu Gang, born in 1984, continued his postdoctoral study at the University of California at Berkeley after obtaining his PhD from the University of Minnesota in 2013. From 2016 to 2019, he served as an assistant professor at Northwestern University in the United States and joined East China Normal University in 2019.

Prof. Liu Gang

Liu Gang's main research direction is complex geometry, involving the intersection of multiple mathematical directions, such as differential geometry, algebraic geometry, multiple complex functions, topology, and partial differential equations. His research interests is mainly the relationship between curvature, topology, complex structure, and algebraic structure, etc.

According to Lyu Changhong, Deputy Dean of the School of Mathematical Sciences of ECNU, and one of the recommenders,  “Liu Gang is a very surefooted, humble and low-pitched.” As a young teacher, he has made outstanding achievements in the field of mathematics and has gained recognition on the international arena. He has the potential for greater development in the future. “His undergraduate major was not mathematics, but he has a great passion for mathematics and is extremely quick-minded. The fact that he wins this prize is inseparable from his persistence study and commitment in academic research.”

Upon hearing the news that he had won the prize, Liu Gang said: “Thanks to the Tencent Xplorer Prize. I will focus more on mathematical research and discover more beauty in mathematics in the future.”

The “Xplorer Prize” is a non-governmental and public interest award for young scientific and technological workers aged 45 and under who are working full-time in the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong and Macao in the fields of fundamental sciences and frontier technologies.

 “Xplorer Prize” focuses on Mathematics and Physics, Life Sciences, Astronomy and Geosciences, Chemical and New Materials, Information and Electronics Technologies, Energy and Environmental Protection, Advanced Manufacturing, Transportation and Construction, and Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies. It aims to reward young scientific and technological workers who highlight the spirit of scientific exploration and concentrate on scientific and technological research, and who have played a great role in promoting the future development of the country.

In 2018, on the 20th anniversary of the founding of Tencent, the “Xplorer Prize” was initiated by Ma Huateng, Chairman and CEO of Tencent and founder of the Tencent Foundation, together with Rao Yi, a professor of Peking University in cooperation with such well-known scientists as Yang Zhenning, Mao Shude, He Huawu, Wu Hequan, Li Peigen, Chen Shiyi, Zhang Yitang, Shi Yigong, Gao Wen, Xie Kechang, Cheng Taining, Xie Xiaoliang, and Pan Jianwei.

This year’s “Xplorer Prize” has received applications from more than 1,200 young scientists. After four rounds of evaluation, the final winners list was eventually unveiled with the ratio of applicants to winners of about 25: 1.

This year, more than 800 “Academicians of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Chinese Academy of Engineering” participated in the nomination, recommendation and review of the prize. In the nomination and recommendation stage alone, the event had seen the participation of 13 Nobel Prize, Turing Prize and Fields Medal winners and over 100 academicians from developed countries, a significant jump from 2019, a proof of the enhanced professionalism and authority of this prize.

Source: ECNU Publicity Office

Copyeditor: Philip Nash

Editor: Zhang Linlan


East China Normal University