Alexander Razborov, the Andrew MacLeish Distinguished Service Professor in the Departments of Computer Science and Mathematics, was elected as part of the 2020 class of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Razborov, who has been with UChicago CS since 2008, was one of six University of Chicago scholars inducted into the prestigious society. He was recognized as a member in both the Math and the Computer Sciences sections. Also elected from UChicago were Joy Bergelson, Maud Ellmann, Giulia Galli, William Howell, and André Neves.
Razborov, known to colleagues as Sasha, primarily researches complexity theory, specifically circuit complexity, proof complexity, quantum computations and communication complexity. His work spans the boundary of computer science and mathematics. For example, he introduced a powerful new method called flag algebras, which has already had a significant impact in enabling the use of computers to find solutions, with rigorous proofs, to problems in extremal combinatorics.
Previously, Razborov was awarded the David P. Robbins Prize from the American Mathematical Society, the Göedel Prize of the European Association for Theoretical Computer Science and the Association for Computing Machinery Special Interest Group on Algorithms and Computation Theory (SIGACT).
“I genuinely believe that certain amusing cultural differences between the two communities look really insignificant when compared to the amount of inspiration and fresh and novel ideas their interaction brings to both disciplines,” he said when he received the Robbins Prize. “In a sense, the work I am being awarded for is a quintessence of this philosophy.”