Wendelin Werner

Wendelin Werner

Professor of Mathematics, ETH Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich,


Breaking the Wall of Randomness. How Random Phenomena Disseminate.

Could it be that there is order in ran- domness? When we observe random phenomena in our lives we often suspect that there is some key that may unlock them – this is not only one of the founda- tions of superstition, but also a motivation for mathematicians. Wendelin Werner (1968) analyses the large scale behavior of random systems such as random walks, the mathematical formalisation of a trajectory that consists of taking successive random steps. The path traced by a molecule as it travels, the financial status of a gambler or the propagation of a disease can all be modeled thanks to random walks – thus making Wendelin Werner’s intricate mathematical analysis applicable to a wide range of fields, from physics to epidemiology. For his work, Wendelin Werner was hon- oured with the Fields Medal, one of the few awards in science that can claim to be even more exclusive than the Nobel Prize.