Donald C. Spencer

Donald C. Spencer
Donald Spencer
Born April 25, 1912(1912-04-25)
Boulder, Colorado
Died December 23, 2001(2001-12-23) (aged 89)
Scottsdale, Arizona
Nationality American
Institutions Princeton University
Alma mater University of Colorado
University of Cambridge
Doctoral advisor J. E. Littlewood and G.H. Hardy
Doctoral students Phillip Griffiths
Joseph J. Kohn
Patrick X. Gallagher
Notable awards National Medal of Science

Donald Clayton Spencer (April 25, 1912 – December 23, 2001) was an American mathematician, known for major work on deformation theory of structures arising in differential geometry, and on several complex variables from the point of view of partial differential equations. He was born in Boulder, Colorado, and educated at the University of Colorado and MIT.

He wrote a Ph.D. in diophantine approximation under J. E. Littlewood at the University of Cambridge, completed in 1939. He had positions at MIT and Stanford before his appointment in 1950 at Princeton University. There he was involved in a major series of collaborative works with Kunihiko Kodaira on the deformation of complex structures, which had a profound influence on the theory of complex manifolds and algebraic geometry, and the conception of moduli spaces.

He also was led to formulate the d-bar Neumann problem, for the operator


(see complex differential form) in PDE theory, to extend Hodge theory and the n-dimensional Cauchy-Riemann equations to the non-compact case. This is used to show existence theorems for holomorphic functions.

He later worked on pseudogroups and their deformation theory, based on a fresh approach to overdetermined systems of PDEs (bypassing the Cartan-Kähler ideas based on differential forms by making an intensive use of jets). Formulated at the level of various chain complexes, this gives rise to what is now called Spencer cohomology, a subtle and difficult theory both of formal and of analytical structure. This is a kind of Koszul complex theory, taken up by numerous mathematicians during the 1960s. In particular a theory for Lie equations formulated by Malgrange emerged, giving a very broad formulation of the notion of integrability.

After his death, a mountain peak outside of Silverton, Colorado was named in his honor.[1]

See also

  • Kodaira–Spencer mapping


  1. ^ Pankratz, Howard (8/18/2008). "Spencer peak added to Colorado mountain lexicon". Denver Post. Retrieved 7/23/2011. 

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Donald Andrew Spencer, Sr. — Donald Andrew Spencer, Sr. (March 5, 1915 May 4, 2010) was one of the first African American realtors in Cincinnati, the first African American broker to join the Cincinnati Board of Realtors, the first African American broker to serve as… …   Wikipedia

  • Donald Spencer — Donald Clayton Spencer (* 25. April 1912 in Boulder, Colorado; † 23. Dezember 2001 in Scottsdale in Arizona) war ein US amerikanischer Mathematiker, der vor allem in algebraischer Geometrie und Analysis (u.a. partielle Differentialgleichungen)… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Spencer (surname) — Spencer (also Spenser) is a British surname. Its earliest occurrence is traced to Leicestershire.It derives from Middle English spenser butler, steward , from Old French despencier larder , ultimately from Middle Latin dispensa .The surname first …   Wikipedia

  • Donald Knuth — Donald Ervin Knuth Donald Knuth at a reception for the Open Content Alliance, October 25, 2005 Born …   Wikipedia

  • Donald J. Cram — Donald James Cram Born April 22, 1919 Chester, Vermont Died June 17, 2001 (aged 82) Palm Desert, California[1] …   Wikipedia

  • Donald Henderson — This article is about the physician. For the writer, see Donald Henderson (Writer). Donald Ainslie Henderson D.A. Henderson with his Presidential Medal of Freedom in July 2002 …   Wikipedia

  • Spencer Abraham — Edward Spencer Abraham, né le 12 juin 1952 à East Lansing (Michigan), est un homme politique américain, fils d immigrants libanais, membre du Parti républicain, ancien sénateur du Michigan au Congrès et 10e …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Donald Justice Poetry Prize — The logo as it appears on books that have won Awarded for unpublished 50 100 typed page manuscript of formal poetry Presented …   Wikipedia

  • Donald Crisp — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Donald Crisp Escena de Shining Victory (1941) Nombre real George William Crisp …   Wikipedia Español

  • Donald McDonald (footballer) — Donald McDonald (born 10 May 1962) is a former Australian rules footballer and coach.[1] Playing career Recruited from St. Brendan s, McDonald debuted with the North Melbourne Football Club in the VFL in 1982. He was a tall player who could play… …   Wikipedia