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Table of Contents


AbstractImportant DatesOccupationPlacesSubjects




Archival as SubjectPublished as AuthorPublished as Subject

William Prager



May 23, 1903 – March 16, 1980

Authorized Form of Name

Prager, William, 1903-1980

Additional Forms of Names

Prager, V., 1903-1980

Prager, W. (William), 1903-1980



William Prager was Emeritus Professor of Engineering and Applied Mathematics at Brown University (1973-1980). Other institutional affiliations included University of California, San Diego, International Business Machines (IBM) and the University of Istanbul. His research interests included variational principles for stability, stress-strain relations in the plastic range inluding the effects of temperature, the theorems of limit analysis and design, minimum weight structures, geometric representation of the slip-line field in the stress plane and hodograph plane, solutions with stress discontinuities, dynamic plasticity, and the models of material behavior as kinematic hardeing and ideal locking.

Important Dates

May 23, 1903Birth, Karlsruhe (Germany).

1925Obtained Dipl. Ing., Darmstadt Technical University, Darmstadt (Germany).

1926Obtained Dr. Ing., Darmstadt Technical University, Darmstadt (Germany).

1927 – 1929Privatdozent, Darmstadt Technical University.

1929 – 1933Privatdozent, University of Göttingen.

1933Professor and Director, Institute of Mechanics, Karlsruhe Technical University.

1933 – 1941Professor of Theoretical Mechanics, University of Istanbul, Istanbul (Turkey).

1941 – 1963Professor of Applied Mechanics, Brown University, Providence (R.I.).

1943 – 1965Managing Editor, Quarterly of Applied Mathematics.

1963 – 1965Resident Consultant, Zurich Research Laboratory, International Business Machines (IBM).

1965 – 1973Professor of Applied Mechanics (1965-1968) and University Professor (1968-1973), University of California, San Diego, La Jolla (San Diego, Calif.).

1968Member, National Academy of Sciences.

1973 – 1980Emeritus Professor of Engineering and Applied Mathematics, Brown University.

March 16, 1980Death, Zurich (Switzerland).


Applied mechanician.



Karlsruhe (Germany)

Undergraduate Education

Darmstadt (Germany)

Graduate Education

Darmstadt (Germany)


Istanbul (Turkey)

Providence (R.I.)

La Jolla (San Diego, Calif.)


Zurich (Switzerland)


Applied mathematics.

Mechanical engineering.





Armstrong, J. A. (John A.)

Both employed at IBM.

Brueckner, Keith A.

Both employed at University of California, San Diego.

Carrier, George F.

Both employed at Brown University.

Gutzwiller, M. C. (Martin C.)

Both employed at IBM.

Kadanoff, Leo P.

Both employed at Brown University.

York, Herbert F. (Herbert Frank)

Both employed at University of California, San Diego.


Hohenemser, K. H. (Kurt H.)


Major Positions

Brown University. Department of Applied Mathematics

Emeritus Professor of Applied Mathematics.

Brown University. Division of Engineering

Professor of Applied Mechanics and Emeritus Professor of Engineering.

IBM Research

Resident Consultant, Zurich Research Laboratory.

İstanbul Üniversitesi

Professor of Theoretical Mechanics.

Technische Hochschule Darmstadt

Obtained Dipl. Ing. (1925) and Dr. Ing. (1926). Privatdozent.

Technische Hochschule Karlsruhe

Professor and Director, Institute of Mechanics.

Universität Göttingen


University of California, San Diego. Department of Applied Mechanics and Engineering Sciences

Professor of Applied Mechanics, and University Professor.

Professional Activities & Affiliations

American Mathematical Society

Managing Editor, Quarterly of Applied Mathematics.

National Academy of Sciences (U.S.)



Archival Resources


Oral history interview with Kurt Hohenemser, 2000 August 19 and 20.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Published Resources


Introduction to mechanics of continua.


Memorial Tributes: National academy of Engineering.