Dusa McDuff (nee Margaret Dusa Waddington) was born
on October 18, 1945 in London, England. She received her
Bachelor's degree from the University of Edinburgh in 1967
and her Ph. D. from the University of Cambridge in 1971. During
her graduate school years she traveled to Moscow, where she was
greatly influenced by I. M. Gel'fand.
After finishing her doctorate, she held a two-year Science Research Council Fellowship at Cambridge. She was then appointed lecturer at the University of York (1973-1976) and then at the University of Warwick (1976-1978). In 1978 she came to the United States to take a positon at the State University of New York at Stony Brook, where she is currently Professor of Mathematics. She has held visiting positions at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1974-1975) and at the Institute for Advanced Study (1976-1977).
Professor McDuff was invited to address the International Congress of Mathematicians in Kyoto, 1990, and the annual meeting of the American Mathematical Society in 1988. During the Joint Mathematics Meetings in Boulder in August 1989, she delivered the first American Mathematical Society Progress in Mathematics lecture. In 1991 she was awarded the Satter Prize of the American Mathematical Society, and in 1993 she was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society.
McDuff's thesis was in Operator Theory: she solved a well-known problem about von Neumann algebras, by constructing infinitely many different factors of type ``II-sub-one.'' After her study of Gel'fand-Fuchs cohomology in Moscow, she worked on the relation between groups of diffeomorphisms and the classifying space for foliations. For the past twelve years she has worked on global symplectic geometry.
At Stony Brook, Dusa McDuff has been a major participant in Calculus reform; she currently has four graduate students writing theses under her supervision; and she has been very active in the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) program, which offers academic, financial and social support to women undergraduate students in those fields.