IHES was recognized in 1958 at a pivotal period in the history of the world and the sciences. LÃ©on Motchane, an industrialist of Russian origin, is a fervent mathematician; He even supported a thesis at the age of 54 years. Determined to provide exceptional scientists with a space for the free development of their research, he is enthused by the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) model in Princeton and created the IHES, dedicated to the theoretical sciences, Both mathematical and physical, and their interactions. From the founding of the Institute, Motchane secured the emblematic support of Robert Oppenheimer, then director of the IAS, who returned to the scientific council and remained there until his death. Convinced of the interest of the scientific project, the first contributors come from the public as well as from the private sector, from France and abroad. This variety of supporters of the Institute reflects a universal vocation that has never faded. Funding As a recognized Foundation of Public Utility in 1981, IHES has to find various funding levers to ensure its functioning and scientific development. Today, the Institutes funding reflects its essence: a French research center with an international reputation Guest professors and researchers Based on people and not on programs, the research carried out at the Institute is distinguished by its interdisciplinarity, deeply rooted in its DNA. While the five permanent professors form the identity of IHES over time, the 200 or so visitors who attend each year guarantee the multiplicity of themes and thus contribute to the scientific vitality of the Institute. â¢ Thibault Damour, physicist Permanent professor since 1989 Thibault Damour is a theoretical physicist working on relativistic gravitation (Einsteins theory of general relativity), cosmology and the new concepts of gravitation suggested by the unification of general relativity and quantum theory defined by the theory of Strings. â¢ Maxim Kontsevitch, mathematician Permanent professor since 1995, holder of the AXA-IHES chair of mathematicsMaxim Kontsevitch belongs to a new generation of mathematicians who have been able to import into their discipline the points of view of quantum physics, opening radically new perspectives.