The JPBM Communications Award is given annually to reward and encourage communicators who, on a sustained basis, bring mathematical ideas and information to non-mathematical audiences. The prize may be awarded in two categories: For Public Outreach and For Expository and Popular Books. Nominations can be submitted via the AMS website.
The Joint Policy Board for Mathematics (JPBM) established the JPBM Communications Award in 1988 to reward and encourage communicators who, on a sustained basis, bring mathematical ideas and information to non-mathematical audiences. Since 2016, the prize may be awarded in two categories: For Public Outreach and For Expository and Popular Books. Up to two awards are made annually.
The nominating committee consists of one representative from each member society of the JPBM. The committee's selection process is chaired by the society chairing JPBM for the year. JPBM is a collaborative effort of SIAM, the American Mathematical Society (AMS), the American Statistical Association (ASA), and the Mathematical Association of America (MAA).
The prize may be awarded to any mathematician or non-mathematician who meets the general guideline of the prize description.
Congratulations to the 2023 recipients, Jordan Ellenberg and Grant Sanderson! Learn more about their accomplishments.
Read the full prize specifications.
See all prizes with open calls for nominations.
The JPBM Communications Award includes a $2,000 monetary award. The JPBM will reimburse the recipient for reasonable travel expenses incurred in accepting the award.
The JPBM Communications Award will next be awarded in January 2023 at the Joint Mathematics Meetings.
The award will be presented at the Prize Session and Reception during the Joint Mathematics Meetings. The announcement of the award will appear in SIAM News, the SIAM website, and appropriate electronic media.
The funds for this award are dedicated by the Joint Policy Board on Mathematics.
Jordan Ellenberg received the 2023 Joint Policy Board for Mathematics (JPBM) Communications Award for his clear and entertaining prose that brings the power and beauty of mathematics to general audiences. In addition to authoring two best-selling books, How Not to be Wrong: The Power of Mathematical Thinking (2014) and Shape: The Hidden Geometry of Information, Biology, Strategy, Democracy, and Everything Else (2021) — Ellenberg also contributes numerous articles to newspapers and magazines in print and online.
Grant Sanderson received the 2023 Joint Policy Board for Mathematics (JPBM) Communications Award for 3Blue1Brown, his watchable and engaging YouTube channel, with over 4 million subscribers, about discovery and creativity in mathematics. Topics range broadly across timely and important mathematical areas, from neural networks to information theory to unexpected appearances of pi in analysis and number theory. Through 3Blue1Brown videos and animations, Sanderson presents mathematics both as practically valuable and as an art form, rich with inviting stories and arresting images.
Talithia Williams has won the 2022 Joint Policy Board for Mathematics (JPBM) Communications Award for bringing mathematics and statistics into the homes and hands of millions through her work as a TV host, renowned speaker, and author.
John Bailer, Richard Campbell and Rosemary Pennington receive the 2021 JPBM Communications Award for their engaging, entertaining, and enlightening Stats + Stories podcast that for over six years has brought the statistics behind the stories and the stories behind the statistics' to public radio and a broad podcast audience.
Erica Klarreich receives the 2021 JPBM Communications Award for her work as a writer and popularizer of mathematics and science. She writes about mathematics and theoretical computer science, and her writing has been chosen for and reprinted in Best Writing on Mathematics in four different years. Her works have appeared in Quanta, The Atlantic, New Scientist, Science News, Wired and other publications for a general audience. Erica Klarreich received a PhD in mathematics in 1997.
Chris Budd receives the 2020 Joint Policy Board for Mathematics (JPBM) Communications Award for his passionate popularization of mathematics. Through his positions at Gresham College, the Royal Institution of Great Britain, and the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications, his books, and his work with science festivals and schools, he inspires audiences of all ages.
James Tanton is a recipient of the 2020 Joint Policy for Mathematics (JPBM) Communications Award for global leadership in high school mathematics instruction. Through his "G'Day Math!" online courses, MAA Curriculum Inspirations, numerous textbooks, and the Global Math Project, he is inspiring millions to learn, and teach, math in wonderful new ways.
The 2019 Joint Policy Board for Mathematics (JPBM) Communications Award was presented to Margot Lee Shetterly for her book and subsequent movie "Hidden Figures," which opened science and mathematics to a new generation of women and people of color by bringing into the light the stories of the African-American women who made significant contributions to aeronautics and astronautics, and, ultimately, to America's victory in the space race.
2018 Vi HartCitation: The 2018 Joint Policy Board for Mathematics (JPBM) Communications Award was presented to Vi Hart for entertaining, thought-provoking mathematics and music videos on YouTube that explain mathematical concepts through doodles.2018 Matt ParkerCitation: The 2018 Joint Policy Board for Mathematics (JPBM) Communications Award was presented to Matt Parker for communicating the excitement of mathematics to a worldwide audience through YouTube videos, TV and radio appearances, book and newspaper writings, and stand-up comedy. 2017 Arthur T. Benjamin2017 Siobhan Roberts2016 Museum of Mathematics2016 Simon Singh2015 Nate Silver2014 Danica McKellar2013 John Allen Paulos2012 Dana Mackenzie2011 Nicolas Falacci and Cheryl Heuton2010 Marcus du Sautoy 2009 George Csicsery 2008 Carl Bialik 2007 Steven H. Strogatz 2006 Roger Penrose 2005 Barry Cipra 2004 No award was given 2003 Robert Osserman 2002 Helaman Ferguson and Claire Ferguson 2001 Keith Devlin 2000 Sylvia Nasar 1999 John Lynch and Simon Singh 1999 Ian Stewart 1998 Constance Reid 1997 Phillip J. Davis 1996 Gina Kolata 1994 Martin Gardner 1993 Joel Schneider 1991 Ivars Peterson 1990 Hugh Whitemore 1988 James Gleick
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