He founded both the Journal of Combinatorial Theory (1966) and the Journal of Graph Theory (1977, when it won the American Association of Publishers award for “Best new journal of the year”). He is a member of the editorial board of 16 scholarly journals. He has published over 700 papers on the graph theory and it applications, not only in mathematics and computer science journals, but also in the fields of anthropology, art , biology, chemistry, geography, linguistics, mechanical engineering, operations research, physics, psychology, and statistics. He has written eight books and edited 10 others. His 1969 book, “Graph Theory,” has become the fifth most cited work in the mathematical research literature during 1978-79 and is still in print. His latest, “Graph theory and geography” was published by Wiley as an electronic interactive book in 2002. His 1970 paper “A formal system for information retrieval from files” was included in the 1996 book, “Great papers in computer science.”
He has delivered over one thousand invited lectures at conferences and universities in 87 countries to date. In particular, he has spoken in all 50 states of the USA, all 10 provinces of Canada, and all 6 states of Australia. He has completed five alphabetical lists from A to Z, in which the last three tell where invited lectures have been delivered, namely:
The two most recent countries are Uruguay, where he taught Spanish at La Universidad de la Republica in Montevideo in August 2000 and Harare, Zimbabwe in November 2000. He also lectured at every university in Denmark(7), Israel (9), Netherlands(11), New Zealand(6), Norway(4), Scotland(4), as well as the smaller countries Aruba(1), Barbados(1), Curacao(1), Jamaica(1), Macedonia(1), Papua New Guinea(21), Singapore(2), Trinidad and Tobago(1).
He had the good fortune to spend two years 1957-59 at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, and also was a research mathematician at Bell Telephone Laboratories in 1957-58 and a Visiting Assistant Professor of Mathematics at Princeton University in 1958-59. He was designated a Distinguished Alumnus at Brooklyn College in 1962 for his applications of mathematics to social psychology and received their Lifetime Achievement Award in 2001 on the 60th anniversary of his B.A degree. He holds fellowships at both Cambridge U (Churchill College) 1980-81, and Oxford U (Wolfson College) 1973-74. He is also an Honorary Fellow of the India National Academy of Sciences as well as a Vice-President of the Calcutta Mathematical Society. He was awarded a Humboldt Senior Fellowship Prize in 1978 in Munich, Germany. Since 1990, he is invited each year to the annual reunion of Nobel Laureates held in Lindau, Germany. He has Erdos number 1, having written two papers with the most prolific mathematician of our times.
In 1955, at the University of Michigan, he taught the first courses on combinatorial theory and on graph theory in the world. He founded both the Journal of Combinatorial Theory (1966) and the Journal of Graph Theory (1977). He is a member of the editorial board of 18 scholarly journals. He has published over 700 papers, mainly on graph theory and its applications, not only in mathematics and computer science journals, but also in the fields of anthropology, art, biology, linguistics, operations research, physics, and the following subjects in which he has been a Visiting Professor: chemistry (Paris, in French), electrical engineering (Santiago, Chile, in Spanish), geography (Lagos), mathematics (Catania, Sicily, and Rome, in Italian), mechanical engineering (Tainan, Taiwan), psychology (Melbourne), computer engineering (Hoboken, Austin, Rolla), and statistics (London). In 1982, he held the Ulam Chair of Mathematics at the University of Colorado in Boulder.
He completed (without tiring) two weeks of lectures on hypercube theory, five hours per day, teaching in 1993 at the U of Tampere and 1996 at the U of Jyvaskyla, Finland. During summer 1996, he was a visiting professor at the Copenhagen Business School. During October 96, he was a visiting professor of mathematics at the U of Papua New Guinea and of computer science at the U of South Australia. In July 97 he was a visiting professor of computer science at Ege E in Izmir and of mathematics a Bilkent U in Ankara, Turkey. He was a Visiting Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Irvine in February 1998. In February 99, he was a visiting professor of engineering in Quito at the U Central del Ecuador. During the spring 2000 semester, he was the Visiting Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the U of Missouri-Rolla.
Not an academic honor, but rather an unusual form of recognition (although anonymously), occurred when the successful film “Good Will Hunting” displayed formulas he had published in a paper in the enumeration of various types of abstract trees. In the film, these formulas were supposed to show a fiendishly difficult unsolved mathematical problem which the star, Matt Damon, playing the role of a janitor, solved effortlessly!
From the University of Michigan he is Professor Emeritus of Mathematics. He is also Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Computer Science at New Mexico State University . He keenly misses teaching and in August 1996, he presented completed two weeks of lectures on hypercube theory, five hours per day, at the University of Jyvaskyla, Finland – without tiring! He spent June and July 1996 as a visiting professor at the Copenhagen Business School.
Revised February 18, 2004.