Erica Klarreich

Freelance Mathematics and Science Journalist

Berkeley, California

Erica Klarreich

My work has appeared in Quanta, Nature, The Atlantic, New Scientist, Science News, Wired and many other publications, and has been reprinted in the 2010, 2011, 2016 and 2020 volumes of "The Best Writing on Mathematics."


A Number Theorist Who Solves the Hardest Easy Problems

July 1, 2020 — In his rapid ascent to the top of his field, James Maynard has cut a path through simple-sounding questions about prime numbers that have stumped mathematicians for centuries.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story

In a Single Measure, Invariants Capture the Essence of Math Objects

June 2, 2020 — To distinguish between fundamentally different objects, mathematicians turn to invariants that encode the objects’ essential features.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story

Graduate Student Solves Decades-Old Conway Knot Problem

May 19, 2020 — It took Lisa Piccirillo less than a week to answer a long-standing question about a strange knot discovered over half a century ago by the legendary John Conway.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story

‘Amazing’ Math Bridge Extended Beyond Fermat’s Last Theorem

April 6, 2020 — Mathematicians have figured out how to expand the reach of a mysterious bridge connecting two distant continents in the mathematical world.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story

What Is the Geometry of the Universe?

March 16, 2020 — In our mind’s eye, the universe seems to go on forever. But using geometry we can explore a variety of three-dimensional shapes that offer alternatives to “ordinary” infinite space.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story

Multiplication Hits the Speed Limit

January, 2020 — A paper posted online in March 2019 presents what may be essentially the fastest possible algorithm for one of the oldest problems in mathematics: whole number multiplication.
Communications of the ACM Link to Story

A Breakthrough in Graph Theory

December 23, 2019 — A counterexample to Hedetniemi's conjecture
Numberphile Link to Story

How Do We Think About Higher Dimensions?

November 4, 2019 — Panel discussion with Alex Eskin, Emmy Murphy and Terry Tao
Breakthrough Prize Symposium Link to Story

Decades-Old Computer Science Conjecture Solved in Two Pages

July 25, 2019 — A paper posted online this month has settled a nearly 30-year-old conjecture about the structure of the fundamental building blocks of computer circuits. This “sensitivity” conjecture has stumped many of the most prominent computer scientists over the years, yet the new proof is so simple that one researcher summed it up in a single tweet.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story

Good Algorithms Make Good Neighbors

July 2019 — A host of different tasks—such as identifying the song in a database most similar to your favorite song, or the drug most likely to interact with a given molecule—have the same basic problem at their core: finding the point in a dataset that is closest to a given point.
Communications of the ACM Link to Story

53-Year-Old Network Coloring Conjecture Is Disproved

June 17, 2019 — In just three pages, a Russian mathematician has presented a better way to color certain types of networks than many experts thought possible.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story

Out of a Magic Math Function, One Solution to Rule Them All

May 13, 2019 — Mathematicians have used “magic functions” to prove that two highly symmetric lattices solve a myriad of problems in eight- and 24-dimensional space.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story


Erica Klarreich

I have been writing about mathematics and science for a popular audience for more than fifteen years. A mathematician before I became a full-time journalist, I try to convey the essence of complex mathematical ideas to non-mathematicians, and give them a sense of the beauty and depth of mathematics.

I also enjoy plunging into topics far from my mathematical roots, and have written about fields such as economics, computer science, medicine, and biology — often as these fields relate to mathematics, but often simply for their own sake.

As a freelance journalist based in Berkeley, California, I have written for many publications, including Quanta Magazine, Nature,, New Scientist, American Scientist,, Nautilus, and Science News, for which I was the mathematics correspondent for several years. I was also the Journalist in Residence at the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute in Berkeley. My work has been reprinted in the 2010, 2011, 2016 and 2020 volumes of "The Best Writing on Mathematics."

I am a graduate of the science writing program at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and I have a Ph.D. in mathematics from Stony Brook University.

For the Fall 2016 semester, I was the Journalist in Residence at the Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing at the University of California, Berkeley.

Contact me at

Follow me on Twitter at @EricaKlarreich