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10/13/2012
John Hopfield Receives 2012 SfN Swartz Prize

John Hopfield Receives 2012 SfN Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience

October 13, 2012, New Orleans — The Society for Neuroscience (SfN) has awarded the 2012 Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience to John Hopfield, Professor, Department of Molecular Biology, Princeton University. Supported by The Swartz Foundation, this $25,000 prize recognizes an individual who has produced a significant cumulative contribution to theoretical models or computational methods in neuroscience. The 5th annual Swartz Prize award was presented during Neuroscience 2012, SfN’s annual meeting and the world’s largest source of emerging news about brain science and health.

“The Swartz Foundation is honored to have the Society for Neuroscience recognize the exceptional contributions of Dr. Hopfield to the field of theoretical neuroscience,” said Jerry Swartz, PhD, chairman of the Swartz Foundation. “His work, blending physics and neuroscience, has established innovative methods and set rigorous standards for advancing the field.”

Hopfield’s work on nerve systems is related to the work he originally did in solid state (condensed matter) physics. He was able to show that the dynamics of the equations describing a large set of neurons connected with their synapses could be described by dynamical systems mathematics (similar to what he used in physics) and thus to represent memory states and other neural phenomena. This work directly influenced a number of others in physics and applied mathematics to get into neuroscience.

Hopfield earned his A.B. in Physics from Swarthmore College, and his PhD in Physics at Cornell University. Among his numerous honors are the Buckley Prize of the American Physical Society and the Dirac Medal and Prize. He was a Mac Arthur fellow, president of the American Physical Society and held chairs at Princeton (twice) and at Cal Tech. He is a member of all three of the leading American academies of science.

The Society for Neuroscience is an organization of more than 41,000 researchers and clinicians who study the brain and nervous system.

The strategic intent of the Swartz Foundation is to integrate problem-solving approaches from physics, mathematics, electrical engineering and computer science into neuroscience research, to better understand the relationship between the human brain and mind, one of the great frontiers of 21st-century science.

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Society for Neuroscience (SfN) Press Release:
Hopfield Receives SfN Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience


Previous SfN Swartz Prize Awards:

2011: Haim Sompolinsky Receives Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience

2010: Larry Abbott Receives Swartz Prize for Theoretical And Computational Neuroscience

2009: Horace Barlow Receives SfN Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience

2008: Wilfrid Rall Receives $25,000 Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience









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