Emmy Noether: The Mathematician Who Developed Noether’s Theorem  

The German mathematician and philosopher Emmy Noether (1882-1935) is best known for her theorem bearing her name which related symmetries in physics with the conservation laws she discovered. Noether’s theorem has left an indelible mark on the field of mathematics, physics and other scientific disciplines. In this article, we will explore the life and work of the accomplished scientist and philosopher, Emmy Noether.


Early Life 

Emmy Noether was born as Amalie Emmy Noether on March 23, 1882 in Erlangen, Germany to a Jewish family. Her father was Doctor Max Noether, a mathematician who worked as a professor at the University of Erlangen. Noether had two brothers; Fritz Noether, and a younger brother, Kaiser Noether, both of whom studied mathematics.


Emmy Noether attended the University of Erlangen in 1900, under the direction of her father, and studied mathematics and language. She graduated with a degree in mathematics in 1907 and went to Gottingen for her doctoral studies. In 1908, she completed her Ph. D. thesis titled, On the Theory of Algebraic Invariants.


In 1915, Noether was appointed to a full-time teaching position in mathematics at the University of Gottingen, becoming the first woman ever to be appointed to such a position. She began teaching at the university in 1919 and remained there until 1933.

In 1930, Emmy Noether gave a lecture at the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore, India. This was the first lecture ever given by a woman at that institute.

Notable Work  

Noether’s Theorem 

Emmy Noether is most famous for her theorem which has come to be known as Noether’s Theorem. This theorem states that for every $A\to B$ symmetry, there exists a conservation law, and vice versa. This groundbreaking theorem explains the relationship between symmetries in physics and the corresponding conservation laws.

Noether’s theorem has far reaching implications and is widely used not just in physics, but in mathematics and other disciplines as well. It is considered one of the most important and powerful theorems in modern science.

Noether’s Idealization 

Noether developed a method known as idealization, which she first demonstrated in her work in the algebra of invariants. This method was later used, in the context of abstract algebra, by Emil Artin to develop his theory of class fields.

Noether’s Ideal Theorem 

Noether published her “Ideal Theorem” in 1931, which established the mathematical relationship between ideals and bases in fields. This provided an important link between algebra and geometry which has become an important part of modern mathematics.


In 1932, Noether was awarded the prestigious Ackermann-Teubner Memorial Prize for her work in mathematics. That same year, she was also offered a job in the United States at Bryn Mawr College.

In 1935, Noether was posthumously awarded the Albert Einstein Award for her work in mathematics, which included her revolutionary theorems and her idealization method.


Emmy Noether’s work has been an enduring influence in the world of mathematics. Her incredibly powerful theorem is a cornerstone of modern physics and mathematics, and her idealization method has been used to make significant advances in abstract algebra.

Noether is remembered as a pioneering mathematician who achieved great success and recognition in a largely male-dominated field. She was celebrated by peers and colleagues in her lifetime, and her remarkable contributions continue to be recognized today.

Emmy Noether was a remarkable mathematician and scientist who left an indelible mark on mathematics and physics with her groundbreaking theorems and idealization method. Her work has been cited by many scholars and has been foundational to the development of modern mathematics and science. Emmy Noether is a shining example of the true potential of female mathematicians and her legacy will continue to be celebrated for generations to come.