Karen Willcox (image: AIAA)

SFI External Professor Karen Willcox (UT Austin), who also serves on SFI’s Science Board, recently won the 2024 Theodore von Kármán Prize for her contributions to computational science and engineering. The Theodore von Kármán Prize was established in 1968 by the Society of Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) and is awarded every five years to a notable application of mathematics to mechanics or engineering. 

Willcox was acknowledged for her work in the development and application of model reduction methods across diverse fields, and digital twins. Willcox joined SFI as External Faculty in 2019, and has since led SFI workshops on digital twins and scientific machine learning. She currently serves as the director of the Oden Institute for Computational Engineering and Science at The University of Texas at Austin. 

“Her pioneering work in model reduction methods and their use in optimal control, optimal design, uncertainty quantification, and inverse problems has had a significant impact on aerospace engineering and, more broadly computational science and engineering,” says Omar Ghattas, director of the OPTIMUS Center at the Oden Institute.

“Receiving this prize is such a huge honor, even more because it bears the name of Theodore von Kármán, an interdisciplinary visionary who worked at the interfaces of mathematics and aerospace engineering. I am truly humbled by this award and so grateful to my students, postdocs, and collaborators who have contributed to the work being recognized,” says Willcox. 

Willcox will be awarded the prize at the SIAM Annual Meeting taking place July 8-–2, 2024, in Spokane, Washington.