The 2015 Sacks Prize of the Association for Symbolic Logic for the best doctoral dissertation in Logic will be shared by Omer Ben-Neria, University of California, Los Angeles, and Martino Lupini, California Institute of Technology. The prize citations can be found here and are also appended to this post for ease of reference. Congratulations to the prize recipients!
Omer Ben-Neria received his Ph.D. in 2015 from Tel Aviv University under the supervision of Moti Gitik.
Martino Lupini received his Ph.D. in 2015 from York University, Toronto under the supervision of Ilijas Farah. He received his bachelor degree at the University of Parma (under the supervision of Celestina Cotti Ferrero) and a master degree from the University of Pisa advised by Mauro Di Nasso with a thesis entitled Recurrence and Szemerédi’s Theorem.
Martino Lupini is the second Italian young researcher to receive this accolade; the first was Matteo Viale in 2006. The successes of young Italian logicians witness the quality of the research in logic in Italy. This is yet another vindication of the analysis of the European Commission on the quality of research in Italian universities, compared with the resources available to Italian researchers: "Strong public science base despite an overall underinvestment in research and innovation." The executive report on Italy also states "R&D investment has slightly increased in recent years but the gap with the EU average is still quite significant." I hope that Italy will devote more of its budget to supporting its universities and research in the future. A starved system cannot continue producing young researchers like Martino Lupini for much longer.
Ben-Neria received his Ph.D. in 2015 from Tel Aviv University under the supervision of Moti Gitik. In his thesis, The Possible Structure of the Mitchell Order,
he proved the remarkable result that, under suitable large cardinal
assumptions on the cardinal $\kappa$, every well-founded partial order
of cardinality $\kappa$ can be realized as the Mitchell order of
$\kappa$ in some forcing extension. The Prizes and Awards Committee
noted that the proof is a tour de force combination of sophisticated
forcing techniques with the methods of inner model theory.
Lupini received his Ph.D. in 2015 from York University, Toronto under the supervision of Ilijas Farah. His thesis, Operator Algebras and Abstract Classification,
includes a beautiful result establishing a fundamental dichotomy in
the classification problem for the automorphisms of a separable unital
$C^*\/$-algebra up to unitary equivalence, as well as a proof that the
Gurarij operator space is unique, homogeneous, and universal among
separable 1-exact operator spaces. The Prizes and Awards Committee noted
that his thesis exhibits a high level of originality, as well as
technical sophistication, in a broad spectrum of areas of logic and