Ahmad Abdi is the 2013 recipient of the Jessie W.H. Zou Memorial Award

Friday, June 7, 2013

Ahmad Abdi

Ahmad Abdi (BMath 2013) is the winner of the second Jessie W.H. Zou Memorial Award for Excellence in undergraduate research in the Faculty of Mathematics. Ahmad was an Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) undergraduate research assistant in spring 2011 and spring 2012, working with Professors Ricardo Fukasawa and Bertrand Guenin.

Ahmad worked with Professor Fukasawa on integer programming formulations for "chance-constrained linear programs". These are generalizations of the well-solved linear programming problem where some of the data is considered random with a given probability distribution. Ahmad extended and generalized the results from two recent papers, thereby deepening the understanding of when integer programming is effective in solving these problems. A research paper has been prepared and will soon be submitted to Mathematical Programming, Series A.

Working with Professor Guenin, Ahmad proved that Paul Seymour's celebrated 1979 Cycling Conjecture holds for even-cycle matroids, thereby substantially generalizing earlier work of Guenin and Geelen. The proof is around 60 pages, and uses tools from matroid theory, graph connectivity, topological graph theory, and a beautiful counting argument. A research paper is being prepared and will be submitted to Journal of Combinatorial Theory, Series B.

Ahmad completed his BMath in April 2013, majoring in Combinatorics and Optimization (C&O) and Pure Mathematics. In May 2013 he started graduate studies in the C&O department.

More information is available on the Faculty of Mathematics website.