Bio: Professor Holst joined the UCSD Mathematics Department in Summer 1998. Prior to arriving at UCSD, he was an assistant professor at UC Irvine during 19971998, and from 19931997 he was a Prize Research Fellow and a von Karman Instructor of Applied Mathematics at the California Institute of Technology. Professor Holst was a UCSD Hellman Fellow in 1999, and was the recipient of an NSF CAREER Award during the period 19992004 for his research in computational and applied mathematics. He is currently PI, CoPI, and/or on the steering committees for a number of interdisciplinary research projects and centers at UCSD and elsewhere, including:
 The La Jolla Interfaces in Science Program (http://ljis.ucsd.edu);
 The Center for Theoretical Biological Physics (http://ctbp.ucsd.edu);
 The National Biomedical Computation Resource (http://nbcr.ucsd.edu);
 The Bioinformatics Ph.D. Program (http://bioinformatics.ucsd.edu);
 The Southern California Applied Mathematics Symposium (SoCAMS);
 and the Computational and Applied Mathematics Research Group within the UCSD Mathematics Department (http://cam.ucsd.edu).
Professor Holst's general research background and interests are in a broad area called computational and applied mathematics; his specific research areas are partial differential equations (PDE), numerical analysis, approximation theory, applied analysis, and mathematical physics. His research projects center around developing mathematical techniques (theoretical techniques in PDE and approximation theory) and mathematical algorithms (numerical methods) for using computers to solve certain types of mathematical problems called nonlinear PDE. These types of problems arise in nearly every area of science and engineering; this is just a reflection of the fact that physical systems that we try to manipulate (e.g., the flow of air over an airplane wing, or the chemical behavior of a drug molecule), or build (e.g., the wing itself, or a semiconductor), or simply study (such as the global climate, or the gravitational field around a black hole) are described mathematically by nonlinear PDE. In simple cases, these problems can be simplified so that purely mathematical techniques can be used to solve them, but in most cases they can only be solved using sophisticated mathematical algorithms designed for use with computers. Computational simulation of PDE is now critical to almost all of science and engineering; the mathematicians provide the mathematical tools and understanding so that scientists in physics, chemistry, biology, engineering, and other areas can confidently use the modern techniques of computational science in the pursuit of new understanding in their fields of study.
