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April 10, 2006

CCNY TO CONFER HONORARY DOCTORATE ON DR. ROBERT J. AUMANN, ’50, WINNER OF 2005 NOBEL PRIZE IN ECONOMICS

NEW YORK, April 10, 2006 – The City College of New York (CCNY) will confer an Honorary Doctorate in Science upon Dr. Robert J. Aumann, ’50, co-winner of the 2005 Nobel Prize in Economics, in a ceremony 12 noon Monday, April 24, in The Great Hall of Shepard Hall.  Dr. Aumann, the ninth CCNY graduate to win a Nobel Prize, will deliver a lecture on “Game Engineering” as part of the event.

“As a major international figure in the development of game-theory analysis, Dr. Aumann has contributed greatly to our understanding of the nature of conflict and cooperation,” noted Dr. Gregory H. Williams, President of The City College, who will bestow the honorary degree upon Dr. Aumann. “We are proud to honor him as part of The City College of New York’s legacy of leadership in mathematics, the sciences and engineering.”

In addition to receiving the honorary degree and delivering his lecture, Dr. Aumann will hold an informal discussion with selected CCNY economics and math students.  His visit is his first to New York since being awarded the Nobel Prize, which he shared with Thomas Schelling, last December.

With Dr. Aumann’s visit, five of CCNY’s seven living Nobel Prize-winning alumni will have returned to campus over the past two years.  Last year, Dr. Arthur Kornberg (Medicine, 1959), Dr. Herbert Hauptman and Dr. Jerome Karle, who shared the 1985 Prize in Chemistry, and Dr. Leon Lederman (Physics, 1988) participated in the “Einsteins in the City” student research conference and paid tribute to another CCNY Nobel Laureate, Dr. Julius Axelrod (Medicine, 1970), who died in December 2004.

“We feel fortunate to enjoy a strong rapport with our Nobelist alumni at the same time that the state and CUNY are committed to strengthening our leadership in the sciences, math and engineering through the construction of two new research buildings on our campus,” President Williams added.

Dr. Aumann’s most significant game-theory analysis work has been in the realm of repeated games which players encounter the same situations again and again.  He was the first to define the concept of correlated equilibrium in game theory, which is a type of equilibrium in non-cooperative games that is more flexible than the classic Nash equilibrium.  He also introduced the first purely formal account of the notion of common knowledge in game theory. 

Born in Germany in 1930, Dr. Aumann fled to New York with his family just before Kristallnacht in 1938.  After attending the Rabbi Jacob Joseph Yeshiva, he enrolled at The City College of New York and received a B.S. in mathematics in 1950. 

He went on to receive M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1952 and 1955, respectively.  In 1956, he joined the faculty of Hebrew University, where he is now Professor Emeritus and still works for the Center for the Study of Rationality,

Dr. Aumann has also taught or conducted research at several prominent American Universities including: Princeton, Yale, UC-Berkeley, Stanford, Minnesota, Stony Brook, NYU and Northwestern.  In addition, he is a member of the National Academy of Sciences.

About The City College of New York

For over 158 years, The City College of New York has provided low-cost, high-quality education for New Yorkers in a wide variety of disciplines.  Over 12,200 students pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in the College of Liberal Arts and Science, the School of Architecture, the School of Education, the Grove School of Engineering, the Center for Worker Education and the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education.

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