Dr Michel van Garrel PhD

Dr Michel van Garrel

School of Mathematics
Lecturer (Assistant Professor)

Contact details

+49 1511 2986236

Dr. van Garrel is a researcher in algebraic geometry and mirror symmetry. He specializes in enumerative geometry, in particular log Gromov-Witten theory, in birational geometry, especially with regards to rationality questions and in the Gross-Siebert programme as the mechanism that explains mirror symmetry and constructs mirror families.

Among his most important contributions, Dr. van Garrel initiated new unexpected correspondences of different enumerative theories in different dimensions, relating log, open and local Gromov-Witten invariants, quiver Donaldson-Thomas invariants as well as sheaf counting invariants of local Calabi-Yau fourfolds.

Dr. van Garrel has organized 12 conferences to build on the growing research communities around these themes. Besides an online conference, these took place at Cambridge, Imperial, the Mathematical Research Institute of Oberwolfach and the Korea Institute for Advanced Study. He has given invited talks in 12 countries on 3 continents.


Lecturer of Mathematics:

  • PhD in Mathematics, California Institute of Technology, 2013
  • MSc in Mathematics, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne, 2008
  • BSc in Mathematics, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne, 2006
  • Propedeutique I in Physics, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne, 2004


Dr van Garrel grew up in the German part of Switzerland speaking French at home. He did his undergraduate studies at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne with his Master thesis in number theory done with Prof. Ken Ribet at the University of California Berkeley.

After that he went for his doctoral studies to the California Institute of Technology to work with Prof. Tom Graber, one of the pioneers of Gromov-Witten theory. The completion of his PhD was followed by some postdoctoral positions. For the first he was a member of a thematic program on Calabi-Yau varieties at the Fields Institute in Toronto. Then he was a researcher at the Korea Institute for Advanced Study in Seoul. During that time, partly through the organization of 3 conferences on it, he learned the Gross-Siebert program, which then earned him a post with Prof. Bernd Siebert at the University of Hamburg.

This was followed by an EU Horizon 2020 Marie Curie Fellowship at the University of Warwick with Prof. Miles Reid FRS. After a 4 month visitor stay at the Institute for Theoretical Studies of ETH Zurich visiting the group of Prof. Rahul Pandharipande, he started his current post at the University of Birmingham.