Dean's Distinguished Lectures

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CEMSE Dean's Distinguished Lecture | Truth and Beauty

Start Date: November 3, 2016
End Date: November 3, 2016

By Professor Tai-Ping Liu ( Academia Sinica, Taiwan )
Science is about truth and art is about beauty. As we have seen in many instances in cultural pursuits, truth and beauty are deeply related. In this talk we start with  the example of Boltzmann the scientist and Chu Yuan the ancient poet from the East. There is similarity between these two towering figures in their passion; but it is their pursuit of beauty and truth that define their greatness. There are key issues handed to us from these giants that continue to concern us. The reversibility/irreversibility of physical phenomena is one such issue that has continued to puzzle leading thinkers since the time of Boltzmann. We will discuss these issues and offer some thoughts on them.

Biography: Tai-Ping Liu works on partial differential equations, shock wave theory, and kinetic theory of gases. He received his B.S. from National Taiwan University (1968), M.S. from Oregon State University (1970) and Ph.D. form The University of Michigan (1973). Liu is a distinguished researcher at Academia Sinica, Taipei and professor emeritus at Stanford University. He has been a faculty member at University of Maryland (1973 to 1988), New York University (1988 to 1990), Stanford University (since 1990) and was the director of Institute of Mathematics, Academia Sinica (2000-2012.)   He has been instrumental in the organization of several international conferences, including Nonlinear Hyperbolic Problems (every two years), Pacific Rim Conference of Mathematics (every three years), Trilateral Meeting on Analysis and Applications (Australia-Italy-Taiwan, every three years), International Workshop on Nonlinear Analysis (at Academia Sinica since 1989), and Summer School (at Stanford University since 1991).  Liu is an editor for several international mathematics research journals, including Archive for Rational Mechanics and Analysis, Zeitscherift fur Analysis und ihre Anwendungen, Bulletin, Institute of Mathematics, Academia Sinica, and Acta Mathematicae Applicae. Liu was awarded Sloan Fellowship (1979), Gugenheim Fellowship (1982), Cataldo e Angiola Agostinelli International Prize (2009), Galileo Galilei Medal (2012). He is a  Fellow of SIAM, Fellow of American Mathematical Society, Member of TWAS, and Member of Academia Sinica.

More Information:

For more info contact: Prof. Athanasios Tzavaras; email:

Date: Thursday 3 Nov. 2016
Time: 12:00 - 13:00
Location: Building 9, Lecture Hall I Room 2322
Light Lunch  will be served at 11:30