MacArthur Fellows Program

Karen K. Uhlenbeck

Mathematician | Class of August 1983

Chicago, Illinois
41 at time of award
Published August 1, 1983

About Karen's Work

Karen Uhlenbeck is a mathematician who studies geometry and partial differential equations, as well as the relationship between geometry and high-energy physics.

The significance of her research lies not only in its particular results, but also in its bringing together of important ideas and techniques from differential geometry, analysis, and mathematical physics.  Uhlenbeck’s mathematical proofs have contributed to the discovery by topologists of a new, four-dimensional space-time.  She is the co-author of Instantons and Four-Manifold Topology (1984) and co-editor of Geometry and Quantum Field Theory (1995).


Uhlenbeck is the Sid W. Richardson Foundation Regents’ Professor of Mathematics at the University of Texas, Austin.  In addition to several visiting professorships, she served previously as a professor of mathematics at the University of Chicago (1983-1988) and at the University of Illinois, Chicago (1977-1983).  Her numerous articles have appeared in such publications as the Journal of Differential Geometry, the American Journal of Mathematics, and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA.

Uhlenbeck, née Keskulla, received a B.S. (1964) from the University of Michigan, and an M.A. (1966) and Ph.D. (1968) from Brandeis University.

Last updated January 1, 2005.

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