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|Born||September 11, 1929
|Died||September 18, 2016 (aged 87)
|Alma mater||University of Debrecen|
|Notable awards||Széchenyi Prize (1996)|
In 1952 he became a Ph.D student (aspirant) at the Institute for Applied Mathematics of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (HAS) and defended his thesis, entitled “On Stochastic Set Functions”, in 1956. His advisor was Alfréd Rényi. Between 1956-68 he was first assistant, later associate professor at the Department of Probability Theory of the L. Eötvös University. In 1968 he became full professor at the Department of Mathematics of the Technical University of Budapest, where he remained until 1983. In that year he returned to the Eötvös University, and became the founder, professor and first chairman of the Department of Operations Research (OR). He retired from there in 2000. Since 1985 he has been distinguished professor of OR, statistics and mathematics at Rutgers University. Currently he is the graduate director of the Ph.D program in OR. Prékopa’s part-time appointments were also very important in his scientific career in Hungary. In 1958 he founded the first research department in OR at the Math. Inst. of the HAS and in 1977 the Department of Applied Math. at the Computing and Automation Inst. of the HAS.
Research and achievements
Prékopa is the father of the Hungarian Operations Research in many ways: he developed the research school and education curricula, organized international and local conferences, formed an academic committee, founded a scientific periodical, etc. He published more than a dozen books and about 350 papers alone and with co-authors and supervised 51 Ph.D students, many of whom are internationally known academics and industrial leaders.
In 1979 Prékopa was elected a corresponding member and in 1985 full member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. He was also elected a foreign member of the National Academy of Engineering of Mexico, fellow of the Econometric Society, member of the International Statistical Institute and honorary president of the János Bolyai Mathematical Society and the Hungarian OR Society, among others.
- G. Grünwald award from the J. Bolyai Society, 1956, given to young mathematicians for outstanding scientific achievements.
- Award from the Federation of Scientific and Engineering Societies of Hungary, 1983, for outstanding activities in organization.
- O. Benedikt award from the Computer and Automation Institute of the HAS, 1979, for outstanding research and leadership in Operations Research and Applied Mathematics.
- Award from the Computer and Automation Inst. of the HAS, 1985, for outstanding scientific research.
- Award from the Polish Academy of Sciences for outstanding scientific achievements and organization, 1982.
- T. Szele medal from the János Bolyai Mathematical Society, 1994, for mentoring young scientists.
- Széchenyi Prize (1996), for outstanding scientific achievements.
- Prize for Excellence from the Publ. House of the H.A.S..1998, for the book 'Stochastic Programming, Kluwer, 1995.'
- Grand Prize of the Arany János Foundation (Hungary) for the creation of a scientific school, 2002.
- EURO Gold Medal, from the Association of European Operational Research Societies, 2003.
- Commander's Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Hungary, 2005.
Books, book parts – editorial activity
- A. Prékopa: Probability Theory, Műszaki Kiadó, Budapest, 440 pages. First edition 1962, second 1972, third 1974, fourth 1980 (in Hungarian).
- J. Bognár, J. Mogyoródi, A. Prékopa, A. Rényi and D. Szász: Probability Theory Problem Collection Textbook Publ. House, Budapest 1971, 330 pages. Second ed. 2001, Typotex, Budapest (in Hungarian).
- Prékopa, A., Linear Programming. J. Bolyai Mathematical Society, Budapest, 1968, 400 pages (in Hungarian).
- Prékopa, A. (editor), Colloquium on the Applications of Mathematics to Economics. Proceedings of the International Conference on the Applications of Mathematics to Economics, Budapest, Hungary, 1963. Publ. House of the H.A.S. Budapest, 1965.
- Prékopa, A. (editor), Inventory Control and Water Storage. Proceedings of the International Conference on Inventory Control and Water Storage, Györ, Hungary, 1971. Colloquia Mathematica Societatis János Bolyai 7, North Holland Publishing Company, 1973.
- Prékopa, A. (editor), Progress in Operations Research I., II. Proceedings of the International Conference on Operations Research, Eger, Hungary, 1974. Colloquia Mathematica Societatis János Bolyai 12, North Holland Publishing Company, 1976.
- Prékopa, A. (editor), Survey of Mathematical Programming I., II., III. Proceedings of the IX International Symposium on Mathematical Programming, Budapest, Hungary, 1976. North Holland Publishing Company, 1979.
- Prékopa, A. (editor), Studies on Mathematical Programming. Proceedings of the IV Conference on Mathematical Programming, Mátrafüred, Hungary, 1975. Mathematical Methods of Operations Research, Vol. 1., Publ. House of the H.A.S., Budapest, 1980.
- Prékopa, A. and J-B. Wets (editors), Stochastic Programming I. II. Mathematical Programming Study 27, 28, 1986.
- A. Prékopa: On a Problem in Probability Theory. In: Proceedings of the First Hungarian Mathematical Congress, Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, 1950 (in Hungarian and in French).
- A. Prékopa: On Composed Poisson Distributions IV. Acta Math. Acad. Sci. Hung., 3(1952), 317–325.
- A. Prékopa: Mathematical Treatment of the Degradation Process of Long Chain Molecules, Publications of the Mathematical Institute of the H.A.S., 2(1953), 103–123 (in Hungarian).
- A. Prékopa: On the convergence of series of independent random variables, Publicationes Mathematicae, 4(1956), 410–417.
- A. Prékopa: Extension of multiplicative set functions with values in a Banach algebra, Acta Math. Acad. Sci. Hung., 7(1956), 201–213.
- Prékopa, A., A. Rényi and K. Urbanik, On the Limiting Distribution of Sums of Independent Random Variables with Values in Compact Topological Groups. Acta Math. Acad. Sci. Hung. 7 (1956), 11–16. (in Russian).
- Prékopa, A. and A. Rényi, On the Independence in the Limit of Sums Depending on the Same Sequence of Independent Random Variables. Acta Math. Acad. Sci. Hung. 7 (1956), 319–326.
- Prékopa, A., On Stochastic Set Functions I. Acta Math. Acad. Sci. Hung. 7 (1956), 215–263.
- Prékopa, A., On Stochastic Set Functions II. Acta Math. Acad. Sci. Hung. 8 (1957), 337–374.
- Prékopa, A., On Stochastic Set Functions III. Acta Math. Acad. Sci. Hung. 8 (1957), 375–400.
- A. Prékopa: On the Compound Poisson Distribution, Acta Scientiarum Mathematicarum, 18(1957), 23–28.
- Prékopa, A., On Additive and Multiplicative Totals. Acta Math. Acad. Sci. Hung. 8 (1957), 107–126
- Prekopa on the homepage of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences