Yale Mathematician Richard Beals Appointed to Endowed Post

Richard Beals of Hamden, a Yale alumnus and longtime faculty member, has been appointed the James E. English Professor of Mathematics by vote of the Yale Corporation, Yale’s governing body.

Beals’ research is in the areas of differential operators, ordinary and partial differential equations, real and complex function theory, inverse scattering theory, functional and global analysis, transport theory, mathematical economics and foundations of measurement.

A 1960 graduate of Yale College, Beals earned his Ph.D. degree from Yale in 1964 and was an instructor and assistant professor at the University before joining the University of Chicago faculty in 1966. He returned to Yale as a professor in 1977; served as director of undergraduate studies in mathematics 1980-82; and chaired the department 1982-85.

In 1989, the mathematician was selected by undergraduates to receive the Yale College Dylan Hixon Prize for Teaching Excellence in the Natural Sciences. Beals was cited for his “gift for presenting abstract analysis as something eminently logical and natural, and seemingly effortless in the learning.” In addition, students praised him for his weekly meetings outside of class to guide undergraduates as they attempted to solve complicated mathematical problems.

Beals is the author or coauthor of four books and is a former editor of “Communications in Partial Differential Equations.” He also was the managing editor of the journal Contemporary Mathematics and served on the editorial boards of other mathematical publications. He was a member of the board of consultants to the U.S. Military Academy’s mathematics department, and served on selection committees for the American Mathematical Society’s Steele Prize, the Sloan Dissertation Year Fellowships and the National Science Foundation’s Graduate Fellowships.

Beals has been a visiting professor at Duke University and the University of Paris (Orsay) and has been an invited lecturer at universities throughout the United States, South America and Europe.

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