James Maynard (mathematician)

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James Maynard
James Maynard MFO 2013.jpg
Born (1987-06-09) 9 June 1987 (age 31)
Chelmsford, England[1]
Nationality British
Alma mater University of Cambridge, University of Oxford
Known for Work on prime gaps
Scientific career
Fields Mathematics
Institutions University of Montreal, University of Oxford
Doctoral advisor Roger Heath-Brown[2]

James Maynard (born 9 June 1987) is a British mathematician best known for his work on prime gaps.[1]

In November 2013, Maynard gave a different proof of Yitang Zhang's theorem[3] that there are bounded gaps between primes, and resolved a longstanding conjecture by showing that for any there are infinitely many intervals of bounded length containing prime numbers.[4] This work can be seen as progress on the Hardy–Littlewood -tuples conjecture as it establishes that "a positive proportion of admissible -tuples satisfy the prime -tuples conjecture for every ."[5] Maynard's approach yielded the upper bound

which improved significantly upon the best existing bounds due to the Polymath 8 project.[6] (In other words, he showed that there are infinitely many prime gaps at most 600.) Subsequently, Polymath 8b was created,[7] whose collaborative efforts have reduced the gap size to 252.[6]

As of 14 April 2014, one year after Zhang's announcement, according to the Polymath project wiki, N had been reduced to 246.[6] Further, assuming the Elliott–Halberstam conjecture and its generalised form, the Polymath project wiki states that N has been reduced to 12 and 6, respectively.[6]

In August 2014, Maynard[8] (independently of Ford, Green, Konyagin and Tao) resolved a longstanding conjecture of Erdős on large gaps between primes, and received the largest Erdős prize ($10,000) ever offered.[9]

After completing his bachelor's and master's degrees at University of Cambridge in 2009, Maynard obtained his D.Phil. from University of Oxford at Balliol College in 2013 under the supervision of Roger Heath-Brown.[2][1] For the 2013–2014 year, Maynard was a CRM-ISM postdoctoral researcher at the University of Montreal.[10] In 2017, he was appointed Research Professor at Oxford.[11]

In 2014, he was awarded the SASTRA Ramanujan Prize.[1][12] In 2015, he was awarded a Whitehead prize and in 2016 an EMS Prize.


  1. ^ a b c d Alladi, Krishnaswami. "James Maynard to Receive 2014 SASTRA Ramanujan Prize" (PDF). qseries.org. Retrieved 13 April 2017. 
  2. ^ a b James Maynard at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
  3. ^ Zhang, Yitang (2014). "Bounded gaps between primes". Annals of Mathematics. Princeton University and the Institute for Advanced Study. 179 (3): 1121. doi:10.4007/annals.2014.179.3.7. Retrieved 16 August 2013. 
  4. ^ Klarreich, Erica (19 November 2013). "Together and Alone, Closing the Prime Gap". Quanta Magazine (Simons Institute). Archived from the original on 20 November 2013. 
  5. ^ Maynard, James (20 November 2013). "Small Gaps Between Primes". arXiv:1311.4600Freely accessible [math.NT]. 
  6. ^ a b c d "Bounded gaps between primes". Polymath Project. Retrieved 21 July 2013. 
  7. ^ Tao, Terence (19 November 2013). "Polymath8b: Bounded intervals with many primes, after Maynard". 
  8. ^ Maynard, James (21 August 2014). "Large gaps between primes". arXiv:1408.5110Freely accessible [math.NT]. 
  9. ^ Klarreich, Erica (22 December 2014). "Mathematicians Make a Major Discovery About Prime Numbers". Wired. Retrieved 27 July 2015. 
  10. ^ "Dr James Maynard". Magdalen College, Oxford. 
  11. ^ "James Maynard appointed Research Professor and receives a Wolfson Merit Award from the Royal Society". 4 April 2018. 
  12. ^ Alladi, Krishnaswami (December 2014), "Maynard Awarded 2014 SASTRA Ramanujan Prize" (PDF), Mathematics People, Notices of the AMS, 61 (11): 1361, ISSN 1088-9477 .

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