An anonymous reader writes: Mirzakhani is the first woman to win a Fields Medal. The gender imbalance in mathematics is long-standing and pervasive, and the Fields Medal, in particular, is ill-suited to the career arcs of many female mathematicians. It is restricted to mathematicians younger than 40, focusing on the very years during which many women dial back their careers to raise children.
Mirzakhani feels certain, however, that there will be many more female Fields medalists in the future. “There are really many great female mathematicians doing great things,” she said.