Dr. Jonathan Borwein Mathematics Ambassador Award Winners


 Dr. Nathalie Sinclair  2017

Dr. Sinclair is a Professor in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University and holds the Canada Research Chair in Tangible Mathematics Learning. She has authored and/or edited several books, some of which serve to develop Teachers’ skills in Mathematics education and others that contribute to the appreciation of the impact of mathematics on our society. Dr. Sinclair’s research has been widely influential, nationally and internationally, generating collaborations in Italy, the UK, Israel, Australia, and the USA. Based on her research, Dr. Sinclair has designed several novel tools that enable learners to interact with mathematics concepts in tangible ways, facilitating a deeper understanding—in her words, giving students “the freedom to think both about the microworld and with it”. Most recently, she co-developed the free iPad app, TouchCounts, which has been shown to develop young children’s fluency in counting and adding and has been downloaded over 800,000 times across ten countries, in six languages. Most importantly, Dr. Sinclair’s research and outreach efforts are tapping into children’s natural abilities in spatial reasoning to engage and motivate them, ensuring that “students can experiment, ask questions, and delight in the wonder of mathematics.”


 Dr. Donna Kotsopoulos 2016

Dr. Kotsopoulos is a professor in the Faculty of Education, cross appointed to the Department of Mathematics in the Faculty of Science at Wilfrid Laurier University. Dr. Kotsopoulos is the director of the Mathematical Brains Laboratory. She is an Ontario Certified Teacher (OCT). She was recently awarded the Hoffman-Little Award for Faculty for excellence in teaching, research, and professional endeavor. She was also recently awarded an OCUFA teaching award. Dr. Kotsopoulos’s research focuses on early mathematical cognition and learning. She founded and developed LittleCounters®, along with Dr. Joanne Lee, at Wilfrid Laurier University, This community-based program for families and early childhood educators encourages mathematical learning for young children through play and every day activities. The program is widely offered in Ontario through community agencies such as the Ontario Early Years Centres. Her research and community outreach aims to improve the lives and futures of Canadians.

 Dr. Robert Smith?  2015

Robert Smith? is a professor of biomathematics at the University of Ottawa. He once combined his day job with pop culture and in doing so accidentally invented the academic sub-discipline of mathematical modeling of zombies. He uses mathematical models to predict the spread of diseases, from HIV to malaria to Ebola. He’s also the foremost authority on the spread of Bieber Fever, but let’s not worry about that one. He has nine books on academia and/or pop culture to his name, most recently “Mathematical Modelling of Zombies” and “Who’s 50: The 50 Doctor Who Stories to Watch Before You Die”.

 Dr. Lynda E. C. Colgan  2014

Dr. Lynda Colgan, Associate Professor and Director at Queen’s Community Outreach Centre, Queen’s University, and recipient of the Mathematics Ambassador Award. The common denominator throughout Dr. Colgan’s career has been her mission to dispel the myth that math is the bad guy! Her life goal is to show as many people as possible that math is everywhere…in flowers and snowflakes, music and dance, wallpaper and floor tiles, Morse Code and Braille, thumbs and feet; and, to convince those same people that math is the most interesting, engaging and important subject in the universe.

 Dr. Peter Taylor  2013
My main interest is in the relationship between inclusive-fitness models and other standard measures of trait (allele) fitness, for example, invasion fitness and fixation probability. Principal collaborators are Corina Tarnita (Princeton), Alan Grafen (Oxford) and Danny Krupp (One Earth Future).Game Theory:My long-time interest in evolutionary game theory has morphed into a fascination in how humans behave and I feel that the time has come for a much more mainstream evolutionary point of view. To begin this quest in a simple way I am looking at interactive games such as prisoner’s dilemma and the ultimatum game. At one time this was the domain of economists and psychologists, and the biologists looked after the animals. But now both sides are interested in both sides. It needs to be said that humans add a significant new flavour to the these contests, and here I am not thinking of rationality, but rather something akin to what is called “fairness.” My principal collaborators are Andrew McEachern (Queen’s) and Danny Krupp (One Earth Future).