More dates

2023 Dr Simon Marais Memorial Lecture - Getting a handle on low-dimensional topology

This event has passed Get tickets

Event description

The Dr Simon Marais Memorial Lecture was established in 2016, this annual memorial lectureship commemorates Dr Simon Marais’ interest and commitment to mathematics, theoretical physics and education.

The University of Sydney was entrusted to continue his passion by his family to inspire our students to pursue mathematics and theoretical physics, strengthen the research community in these fields and engage the general public in these fields of work.

Join us for 2023 Dr Simon Marais Memorial Lecture presented by Associate Professor Lisa Piccirillo at MIT. 

Science demonstrations from 5.30pm. Lecture will run from 6pm-7pm. 

Please allow two weeks for the lecture recording to be created on <>.


Topologists study manifolds, which are spaces that are locally very simple, but globally perhaps complicated. In dimensions 3 and higher, manifolds can be hard to visualize, because they cannot be embedded in 3-dimensional space. Associate Professor Lisa Piccirillo will introduce a set of building blocks for manifolds, called handles, which will allow us to build some pretty cool, and rather non-trivial, manifolds. In particular, she will talk about how to use handles to think about 4-dimensional manifolds.

About the speaker

Dr Lisa Piccirillo, Associate Professor of Mathematics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and a research fellow in the Clay Mathematics Institute. She is a mathematician specialising in the study of three- and four-dimensional spaces. Her work in four-manifold topology has surprising applications to the study of mathematical knots, where as an example, she took less than a week to answer a long-standing question about a strange knot discovered over half a century ago by John Conway.

Powered by

The humane choice for tickets Humanitix donates 100% of profits from booking fees to children’s charities

Refund policy

No refund policy specified.