University of Miami
Department of Mathematics


Shing-Tung Yau

William Caspar Graustein Professor of Mathematics
Harvard University

will present

The Shape of Inner Space:
String Theory and the Geometry of the Universe's Hidden Dimensions

Tuesday, January 17, 2012, 5:00pm
The Wesley Center, 1210 Stanford Drive

Reception immediately following the lecture
All interested persons are welcome to attend.

Abstract: String theory says that we live in a 10-dimensional universe, but that only four are accessible to our everyday senses. According to theorists, the missing six are curled up in bizarre geometric spaces known as Calabi-Yau manifolds. In this public lecture Professor Yau will tell us the story of these spaces, while illustrating how mathematics and physics can come together to the benefit of both fields. In the process he will describe his personal introduction to geometry, as well as a bit of the history of geometry. In so doing, he hopes to give a sense of how mathematicians think and approach the world, and to convey the realization that mathematics, far from being a completely abstract discipline, disconnected from everyday phenomena, is crucial to our understanding of the physical world.

Shing-Tung Yau, William Caspar Graustein Professor of Mathematics at Harvard, is one of the most celebrated and influential mathematicians of our times. He has made fundamental contributions to algebraic and differential geometry which have had a profound influence on a wide range of scientific disciplines, including general relativity and string theory. Professor Yau has been the recipient of a remarkable number of scientific distinctions. In 1982, Professor Yau was awarded the Fields Medal, the highest award in mathematics. In 1994, he was awarded the Crafoord Prize by the Royal Swedish Academy, and in 2010 he was awarded the Wolf Prize in Mathematics. He is a past recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, and in 1997 he received the National Medal of Science. Professor Yau is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences.

The McKnight-Zame Distinguished Lecture Series is made possible by a generous donation from Dr. Jeffry Fuqua, who received his PhD in Mathematics from the University of Miami in 1972 under the direction of Professor James McKnight. This lecture series is named in honor of both Professor McKnight and Professor Alan Zame, who was a close mentor of Dr. Fuqua while he was a student at the University of Miami.

For more information contact Dania Puerto at or 305.284.2575. Parking is available in the Pavia Garage on the Coral Gables campus of the University of Miami.