We are delighted to announce that the Councils of the IMA and the LMS have awarded the 2017 David Crighton Medal to Professor I. David Abrahams, Director of the Isaac Newton Institute for the Mathematical Sciences, for his outstanding service to both mathematics and the mathematical community.
David Abrahams developed the technically demanding Wiener-Hopf techniques for applications in real problems, and created a vibrant group working on waves in Manchester. He has received the Royal Society’s Leverhulme Trust Senior Research Fellowship and its Wolfson Research Merit Award, a strong indication of the value people close to his area put on his work.
In terms of service to the community, David has performed almost all the important roles of a leader in the mathematics community: he has sat on and chaired committees for the Research Councils including the SAT, served on the REF panel twice, and taken senior leadership roles as President of the IMA, Scientific Director at ICMS and more recently Director of the Isaac Newton Institute for the Mathematical Sciences. In all these positions he has supported both the mathematical sciences (in the broadest sense) and mathematical scientists, as well as being an active champion of knowledge exchange with industry and others outside mathematics.
David is also recognised for his personal qualities. He has a strong sense of responsibility for more junior colleagues. In Manchester he built up and mentored a high quality group of students, postdocs and academics, taking great care to support their personal development. At ICMS he ensured that Early Career Researchers are able to showcase their research and have good access to the international visitors. Throughout his career he has actively promoted women in mathematics.
The success of the UK mathematics community in creating impact in society, and being able to demonstrate that impact, is down to the small band of influential voices that advocated the importance of this activity. David’s voice is one of the loudest and most persuasive of this small but influential group of people, and this is now reaping rewards in his own research through the development of his own industrial collaborations.