Robert L. Bryant

Director of MSRI

Robert Bryant became the fifth Director of MSRI on August 1, 2007. Previously, he had served on the Board of Trustees of the MSRI beginning in 1999, becoming the chair of the board in 2001, and serving in that capacity until the end of his term in 2004.

A North Carolina native, Robert Bryant received his PhD in mathematics in 1979 at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, working under Robert B. Gardner. After serving on the faculty at Rice University for seven years, he moved to Duke University in 1987, where he held the Juanita M. Kreps Chair in Mathematics until moving to the University of California at Berkeley in July 2007. He has held numerous visiting positions at universities and research institutes around the world. During the 2001–02 academic year, he visited MSRI as a Clay Mathematics Visiting Professor, and he was in residence at MSRI during the Fall 2003 term as a co-organizer of the program in Differential Geometry.

His research interests center on exterior differential systems and the geometry of differential equations as well as their applications to Riemannian geometry, special holonomy, and mathematical physics.

In 2002, he was appointed by then-President Bush to serve on the Board of Directors of the Vietnam Education Foundation, and he currently serves on the International Committee for the National Mathematics Center of Nigeria. He has served as the director of the Park City/IAS Mathematics Institute and as a Vice President of the American Mathematical Society.

He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a member of the National Academy of Sciences.

Curriculum Vitae


• Phone: 510-642-8226 (rings to the Director's Assistant)
• Fax: 510-642-8609
• Email: director at