Samuel S. Watson

Samuel S. Watson

Uniform spanning forest headshot

I am a Tamarkin Assistant Professor in the pure mathematics department and the Director of Graduate Studies in the Data Science Initiative at Brown University. I'm a co-organizer of the discrete math seminar.

Research

My research area is theoretical probability. I study conformally invariant two-dimensional statistical physics models and their continuum scaling limits. I work on problems related to percolation, conformal loop ensembles, and the Gaussian free field.

If you're interested in learning about my field of research and you aren't a mathematician, please read this non-technical overview of the key idea which drives much of the current research in conformally invariant probability. It discusses why this idea is so compelling and how it has been mathematically fruitful (accounting for two recent Fields medals).

Teaching

I have written notes for Brown courses on multivariable calculus, third-semester calculus (including complex variables, differential equations, and Fourier series), and probability. In the fall, I will be teaching DATA 1010, which is a probability and statistics course for students in the Data Science Master's Program. I use a variety of technologies in the classroom and was the recipient of the 2018 Teaching with Technology award at Brown.