2009-08-23 06:18:47 UTC
International Math Olympiad (IMO) here:
China is the ONLY nation out of 104 where all 6 out of 6 participants
were awarded *gold* medals (cutoff: top 1/12 of all contestants).
And the only 2 contestants out of 565 who had perfect marks and who
scored at the 100th% percentile hail from North East Asia:
(a) Makoto Soejima of Japan
(b) Dongyi Wei of China
Now we turn our attention to the International Physics Olympiad (IPhO).
This is their 40th anniversary, and was held in Mérida, Mexico from the
11th July 2009 to the 19th July 2009. Normally students who do well in
math tend to ace physics, but due to the overlap of dates with the IMO
very few if any managed to participate in both events. In other words,
we're sampling a different talent pool here.
Participating countries will send up to 5 students (contestants) to the
IPhO. Gold Medals are awarded to 8% of the contestants; gold or silver
medals are awarded to 25% of the contestants; gold, silver or bronze
medals are awarded to 50% of the contestants; and Olympic Medals or
Honorable Mentions are awarded to 67% of the contestants. That is, the
overall criteria very closely parallels that of the IMO (with exception
of the HM category.)
70 countries participated, with 315 contestants in total (not every
country sent 5 contestants). Unlike the IMO however, the International
Physics Olympiad does not explicitly rank countries. Individual results
are as follows:
Top 5 out of 315 contestants:
1. China's Handuo Shi
2. Taiwan's Yu-An Chen
3. Korea's Donggun Kim
4. China's Qian Lin
5. China's Jin Lei
The pattern is once again so eerily familiar with the IMO: all the top
dogs hail from North East Asia.
In fact, the China team once again has a perfect 5/5 record on the gold
medal list. Casual inspection shows no other country achieving this
perfect gold medal record.