Robbert H. Dijkgraaf
Institute for Advanced Study
Mathematical physicist; Academic institution administrator; Research institution administrator; Public policy advisor
Leadership, Policy, and Communications
Scientific, Cultural, and Nonprofit Leadership
Robbert Dijkgraaf is Director and Leon Levy Professor of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. Dijkgraaf is a mathematical physicist who has made significant contributions to string theory and to the advancement of science education. His research focuses on the interface between mathematics and particle physics. He has uncovered new structures in topological string theory, quantum states of black holes, and supersymmetric gauge theories. He is Past President (2008-12) of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences and Co-Chair (2009-2017) of the InterAcademy Council, the global alliance of academies of sciences advising the United Nations and other international organizations. Dijkgraaf is a distinguished public policy adviser and passionate advocate for science and the arts. Many of his activities -- which have included frequent appearances on television, a monthly newspaper column in NRC Handelsblad, several books for general audiences, and the launch of the science education website Proefjes.nl -- are at the interface between science and society. For his contributions to science and his leadership and outreach in science education and public policy, Dijkgraaf was awarded the Spinoza Prize, the highest scientific award in the Netherlands, in 2003. He was named a Knight of the Order of the Netherlands Lion in 2012 and is a member of the Academia Europaea, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society.