The extraordinary theorems of John Nash

7.50pm to 9.15pm, Friday 29 April

The Theatre

The Royal Institution of Great Britain GB United Kingdom W1S 4BS 21 Albemarle Street London

This event has already taken place


Standard £18


Concession £15


Discounts for Members

Event description

On 23 May 2015, John Forbes Nash tragically died in a taxi accident, just after receiving the most prestigious award that a mathematician can dream of, the Abel Prize. This tragic episode was the last event in a life which was so full of amazing events that Nash became an icon of human genius, recipient of the Nobel Prize and hero of a Hollywood movie looking at his life marked by mental illness.

But most of all, Nash was a prophet who founded several new chapters of game theory and geometric analysis in just a few revolutionary contributions that seemed to come from nowhere. Fields medal winner, Cédric Villani will take us through this very special world of mathematical creation.

About the speaker

Cédric Villani is a French mathematician who works primarily on partial differential equations, Riemannian geometry and mathematical physics. He was awarded the prestigious Fields Medal in 2010 – an award often viewed as the highest honour a mathematician can receive.

He is a member of the Science and Technology Advisory Council and DIrector of the Institut Henri Poincaré.

Dress code

The dress code for this event is smart.

Food and Drink

The Discourse is a perfect occasion to meet like-minded people who share an enthusiasm for science and technology!

Our Discourse drinks reception in the Atrium provides a vibrant and welcoming social space where Ri members and their guests can meet each other, share a drink or two with canapés and explore 200 years of science innovation in the Faraday Museum before attending the Discourse in our famous lecture theatre. The reception runs from 6.30pm – 7.30pm and tickets are £15 per person for Ri Members and their guests.

A fine dining menu is also served before and after the Discourse in our restaurant and restaurant reservations are open to Ri Members and non-members.

To book your table or the Discourse drinks reception, please call
020 7670 2973 or email

More about Discourses

If you haven't been before, Discourses are traditional events that date back to 1825. There is also a certain level of tradition and ceremony during the event, including: the speaker and host walk through the doors as the clock bell rings at exactly 8pm; the speaker starts the talk with no introduction or hellos, and should finish at 9pm as the clock bell rings again; the speaker is locked in a room 10 minutes before the talk begins to prevent them running away (legend has it that once a speaker escaped just before the discourse). 

Find out more about the history of the Friday Evening Discourses on our blog.


This event will be filmed and on the Ri Channel within a few months. Subscribe for free to hear when new videos are released.

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