Akshay Venkatesh, 36, a renowned Indian-Australian mathematician, is one of four winners of mathematics' prestigious Fields medal, known as the Nobel Prize for math. The Fields medals are awarded every four years to the most promising mathematicians under the age of 40.
The New Delhi-born mathematician was recognised for his use of dynamics theory, which studies the equations of moving objects to solve problems in number theory, which is the study of whole numbers, integers and prime numbers,.
Venkatesh was born in New Delhi and his family moved to Perth, Australia, when he was two. He participated in physics and math Olympiads the premier international competitions for high school students and won medals in the two subjects at ages 11 and 12, respectively. Venkatesh became the youngest student to be accepted into the University of Western Australia when he was just 13-years-old. He graduated with first-class honours in pure mathematics at 16, again the youngest to do so. In 2002, he earned his PhD at the age of 20. Since then, he has gone from holding a post-doctoral position at Massachusetts Institute of Technology to becoming a Clay Research Fellow and, now is a professor at Stanford University. The 36-year-old has two children.
The prize was inaugurated in 1932 at the request of Canadian mathematician John Charles Fields, who ran the 1924 Mathematics Congress in Toronto. Each winner receives a 15,000 Canadian-dollar cash prize.