George Leitmann

George Leitmann

Affiliation
University of California, Berkeley
(
Country
US
)

George Leitmann is a Professor Emeritus of engineering science and associate Dean for International Relations at the University of California, Berkeley. His 50+year Berkeley career has included everything from research and teaching to serving as the first ombudsman in the UC system. During seven years at the US Naval Ordnance Test Station, China Lake, he worked mostly on rocket trajectory optimization and testing. He joined the Berkeley faculty in 1957. With the beginning of his appointment at UC in 1957 he began to extend his work in variational calculus and optimal control theory, both in theory and applications, some of which is contained in an introductory text (1967) and two edited volumes (1965 and '69), later expanded to a basic text (1981). This work was awarded the Goddard aerospace and the flight mechanics awards of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. That in turn led to research in dynamical game theory and its applications, which can be found in three books (1966, 1967 and 1974) and numerous edited volumes. In the early 1970's and extending into the 1990's, this led to research on robust control with applications to uncertain systems in engineering, science, economics and management for which he was awarded the Levy medal of the Franklin Institute and more recently the first Isaacs Award of the International Society of Dynamic Games. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering as well as of six foreign academies of science and engineering, and he holds three honorary doctorates. Since emeritation in 1991, he has returned to earlier work in the calculus of variations, especially numerous extensions of a 1967 paper, which are based on the methodology of equivalent problem solutions and regularizing transformations, which simplify the classical approach of Caratheodory. Lately, he has also turned to topics of more recent interest such as an analysis of the dynamics of terrorism. Professionally, he edited or co-edited over a dozen journals including the largest and arguably the most prestigious journal of mathematical analysis and applications founded by Richard Bellman, the latter as editor for sixteen years. Since so many of Professor Leitmann's doctoral students and post-doctoral fellows were international ones and his interests always transcended the US border, he became very involved with international collaborations, was awarded an Alexander von Humboldt Prize in 1980 and subsequently the A. von Humboldt medal and the Werner Heisenberg medal of the A. von Humboldt Foundation.

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