John von Neumann is probably the most impactful Hungarian-born scientist in the United States. He was one of the founding professors of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton along with Albert Einstein and Oswald Veblen. In 1999, he was named "Person of the Century'' by the Financial Times. He was part of the group of Hungarian scholars referred to as "Martians'' who found a new and welcome home in the United States during the dark period in Europe before and after World War II. This group included Paul Erdős, Paul Halmos, Theodore von Kármán, John G. Kemeny, John von Neumann, George Pólya, Leo Szilard, Edward Teller, Eugene Wigner, Franz Alexander, Peter Carl Goldmark, John Harsanyi, Peter Lax, George Olah, Egon Orowan, John Polanyi, Valentine Telegdi, Cornelius Lanczos, many of theme either won Nobel prize, or invented something unique and contributed to the advancement of all humanity.
Von Neumann was born 120 years ago in 1903, and we have chosen to celebrate this anniversary with several events honoring his legacy and contributions to science and innovation in the United States and around the world. Von Neumann undertook to solve the most difficult challenges by working in parallel on the most abstract and practical aspects of the problem, in an interdisciplinary approach within mathematics, across sciences and cultures. Specific cross-connections between science and practice include digital computing, game theory, general equilibrium, artificial intelligence, and many other areas based on his earlier research. A number of Nobel laureates have learned and used many of Neumann's theories in the fields of economics, mathematics, chemistry, and physics.
To celebrate the 120th anniversary of Neumann’s birth, several organizations in Hungary are preparing a series of commemorative events to make Neumann's legacy as accessible as possible. The lead institution in organizing these events is the Janos Neumann Computer Society. In close collaboration with it and many other experts in theoretical and applied sciences, the Science and Innovation Section of the Consulate General of Hungary is committed to promoting Neumann's scientific legacy in every possible forum. Thanks to the close cooperation with many stakeholders, there will be conferences, exhibitions, cultural and educational programs in New York, Philadelphia and many other cities in the United States in the fall of 2023 and spring of 2024.