Stefaan De Winter

Stefaan De Winter
"Mathematics is like cooking, it requires confident guesswork and improvisation, experimentation and substitution, dealing with failure and uncertainty in a creative way."
—Paraphrased from "Sir Vidia's Shadow" by Paul Theroux


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  • Professor, Mathematical Sciences
  • Rotating Program Director at NSF
  • PhD, Mathematics, Ghent University in Belgium


I was born and raised in the beautiful medieval city of Bruges (the city where the famous mathematician Simon Stevin was born), in Belgium (the country famous for chocolate, beer, and Tintin). As early as kindergarten I fell in love with numbers, and it was very quickly clear to me that mathematics would play a major role in my life. I studied pure mathematics at Ghent University, and pursued my graduate studies in its Research Group on Incidence Geometry under the guidance of Frank De Clerck and Jef A. Thas. After obtaining my PhD degree I worked as a postdoctoral researcher for the Research Foundation - Flanders in Belgium. During this time I also worked as a Teaching Visitor at the University of California San Diego (visiting Jacques Verstrate), and as a Visiting Assistant Professor at Ohio University (visiting Sergio Lopez). In August 2011 I joined the Department of Mathematical Sciences at Michigan Tech. In August 2014 I received early tenure and promotion to associate professor.

I am currently serving as Program Director in Combinatorics at the National Science Foundation.

Areas of Expertise

  • Projective geometry
  • Algebraic and geometric combinatorics
  • Groups acting on geometries and graphs