The DMV Presidium selected Esnault for her outstanding scientific achievements in mathematics. The members of the committee described her as one of the world's most prominent personalities in mathematics today, and commended her for her profoundly impressive results in algebraic geometry and their impact on other scientific areas.
Esnault was born in Paris and has dual French-German citizenship. She got her PhD in 1976 from the University of Paris VII and did her habilitation at the University of Bonn in 1985. After holding positions at Paris VII, MPI Bonn and the University of Duisburg-Essen, Esnault joined the FU Berlin in 2012 as its first Einstein Professor, where she is head of the algebra and number theory research group. Her awards and honors include the Paul Doisteau-Emile Blutet Prize (2001), the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize jointly with Eckart Viehweg (2003), two honorary doctorates, and full membership of four science academies. Esnault was also an invited speaker at the 2002 ICM in Beijing and the 2012 ECM in Krakow.
The Cantor Medal is the most important scientific prize awarded by the DMV and candidates must be associated with the German-speaking area. The medal will be presented to Esnault at an official ceremony during the DMV Annual Meeting in September 2019 and comes with prize money in the sum of 4000 euros.
Written by S. E. Sutherland-Figini