Public Lectures

Leonhard Euler: His Life, the Man and His Work


On the occasion of the 300th anniversary of Euler’s birth (on 15 April 2007), an attempt is made to bring Euler’s genius to the attention of a broad segment of the educated public. The 3 stations of his life – Basel, St Petersburg and Berlin – are sketched and the principal works identified in more or less chronological order. To convey a flavour of his work and its impact on modern science, a selection of some of Euler’s memorable contributions is discussed in more detail. Remarks on Euler’s personality, intellect and craftsmanship, will round out the talk.


Prof Walter Gautschi
Professor Emeritus
Mathematics & Computer Science, Purdue University

Prof Walter Gautschi is Professor Emeritus of Mathematics and Computer Science at Purdue University since 2000. He graduated in 1953 with a Ph.D. in Mathematics under Professor Ostrowski at the University of Basel. As a Janggen-Pöhn Research Fellow, he did two years of postdoctoral work the first at the Istituto Nazionale per le Applicazioni del Calcolo in Rome, the other at Harvard University. Prior to his appointment in 1963 as Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science at Purdue University, he held positions at the National Bureau of Standards (now the National Institute of Science and Technology) in Washington, D.C. and at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Among his present and past editorial activities are editorships on Numerische Mathematik, SIAM Journal on Mathematical Analysis, Calcolo, Mathematics of Computation, and special editor for Linear Algebra and its Applications. In 2001, Professor Gautschi was elected a Corresponding Member of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities and, in the same year, a Foreign Member of the Turin Academy of Sciences. He has published two books and some 200 research papers.



29 August (Wednesday) 2007 / 4pm


The Maxwell Auditorium

Singapore Science Centre

Registration Fee

Attendance is free of charge but pre-registration is required.


Reservations are accepted on a first-come-first-served basis due to limited seating. Please make your reservations online through or via e-mail ( on or before 27 August 2007 by 4pm.

An exhibition on the life and amazing works of Leonhard Euler is displayed on the second level overlooking the Atrium of the Science Centre. This exhibition is generously brought to Singapore and the Science Centre by Swiss House Singapore and has been open since April 2007.

Experiencing Mathematics
… is an exhibition conceived first and foremost for young people, their parents and their teachers. The exhibition invites you to approach mathematics in a playful and interactive way. It is initiated by UNESCO and designed by Centre•Sciences, (CCSTI Centre region, Orléans, France) in collaboration with Tokai University (Tokyo, Japan) and the Ateneo, Manila University (Philippines). It is brought to the Singapore Science Centre through the generosity of Swiss House Singapore. This exhibition opens on 18 July 2007 and will remain at the Science Centre until October 2007.

The Swiss House Singapore
… is a platform of the Swiss Embassy. Its objective is to foster partnerships between Switzerland and Southeast Asia in the field of Education, Research and Innovation. It operates in synergy with academic, governmental and economic networks, and provides partnering opportunities by organizing innovative events, and providing a knowledge network to its users.

Singapore Mathematical Society
… is the national body representing the interests of the mathematical community in Singapore. It is a constituent body of the Singapore National Academy of Science SMS organizes the annual Singapore Mathematical Olympiad and the Singapore Mathematics Project Festival, and supports the Singapore International Mathematical Olympiad. The Society also supports international mathematical conferences held in Singapore, and engages in outreach activities such as public lectures and workshops.