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Andrew Knyazev
2008 Excellence in Research and Creative Activities Award Winner

Faculty awards are given for excellence in research and creative activities, teaching, service, and librarianship on the downtown Denver campus. The selection committee for each award was comprised of faculty members who won the award at the school/college/library level, as well as for the entire campus, during the past two years.

Each selection committee had the very difficult task of choosing just one overall winner from the nominees submitted by the schools, colleges, and the library. These faculty members all have impressive and extensive records of achievements and contributions to our students, colleagues, professional organizations, library, and community.

The faculty members who won the Excellence in Research and Creative Activities award in each school/college/library are:

  • Herman Aguinis, Business School
  • Connie Fulmer, School of Education and Human Development
  • Julee Herdt, College of Architecture and Planning
  • Andrew Knyazev, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (Mathematical and Statistical Sciences)
  • Hai Lin, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (Chemistry)
  • Nina McHale, Auraria Library
  • Daniel Rees, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (Economics)
  • Paul Teske, School of Public Affairs

The campus winner is Andrew Knyazev. An Associate Professor in the Mathematical and Statistical Sciences Department, Andrew has been at UC Denver since 1994. He is a leader in the a rea of numerical linear algebra, with a concentration on the development of algorithms for solving eigenvalue problems. His contributions span both the theoretical aspects and the applied areas of computational mathematics. As one of his nominators wrote:

"Andrew's work had a significant impact on the state of the art in eigenvalue computation and applications. Years ago, he started to develop new algorithms which are better suited for contemporary very large problems and computer architectures. This was an uphill battle against entrenched interests in the field. Eventually his work got recognized [and] by now, his seminal papers on preconditioned eigenvalue solvers have received a significant number of citations: 46 alone for a 2001 paper which has laid the foundation of the class of methods. He has contributed software to a number of software packages at national laboratories and he is invited to organize prestigious Oberwolfach conferences and to give plenary invited talks at conferences."

Andrew's publication record is extensive. Since he began his academic career, he has published over 50 refereed articles, books, refereed symposia proceedings, and translations of books, with many additional nonrefereed publications, conference presentations, and works in progress. In the period covered by this award (last three years), he has produced approximately 12 articles, presentations, and reports. He also is the main developer of a popular software package, BLOPEX, which includes Locally Optimal Block Preconditioned Conjugate Gradient Method (LOBPCG) for eigenvalue problems. He maintains several Web pages, which are visited often by students and scholars.

Since 2004, Andrew has received five NSF and DOE grants, totally about $680,000. These research grants have supported Ph.D. students with whom Andrew has co-authored papers and presentations; the students also have been successful at obtaining fellowships. In addition to student collaborators, Andrew has written joint papers with famous senior researchers such as N.S. Bakhvalov, Olof Widlund, J. Osborn, and C. C. Paige. His interests are multidisciplinary, and he has applied his mathematical knowledge and expertise to many areas: parallel computing, geosciences, computational mechanics, material sciences, image processing, data mining, and DNA microarray in molecular biology.

The impact of Andrew's work is seen in the high number of citations, not just from articles published in mathematical journals, but also in journals in engineering, chemistry, physics, computer science, artificial intelligence, and nanotechnology. Further demonstrating impact is the high number of conferences, workshops, seminars and symposia to which he is invited to present his research.

The members of the selection committee for the award were very impressed with the deep and long-lasting impact of Andrew's contributions, particularly the new methodologies; the mentoring of fellow faculty members and students; the large number of publications; and the NSF grants. As Department Chair Michael Jacobson concluded in his nomination letter: "[Andrew's] reputation was quite evident during our recent search for a faculty member in Computational Mathematics, when [several of the] candidates that were brought to campus explicitly stated that one of the appealing parts of employment here would be the opportunity to collaborate with Dr. Knyazev."
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