Archive for December 2010

New SIAG Officers elected

SIAM is pleased to announce the election results for its activity groups. We would like to express our thanks to everyone who stood for election and to those who participated. It is indeed a great honor to be chosen to run for office.

Please continue reading to get an introduction to the affiliations and research interests of the newly-elected officers, who will serve a two-year term starting January 1, 2011.

SIAG on Geosciences

Malgorzata Peszynska, Associate Professor of Mathematics at Oregon State University will be the new Chair of SIAG Geosciences. Professor Peszynska’s research is in the area of mathematical and computational modeling of flow and transport in porous media, and other similar phenomena defined by nonlinear coupled PDEs with highly heterogeneous and multiscale data.

Ivan Yotov of the University of Pittsburgh has been elected as the SIAG’s Vice Chair. A Professor of Mathematics, Dr. Yotov’s research interests include numerical analysis and solution of PDEs, in addition to large scale scientific computing that has applications in fluid flow and transport.

Jennifer Niessner, a private docent at the Institute of Hydraulic Engineering at the University of Stuttgart, Germany, has been elected as Secretary for SIAG Geosciences. She studies multi-scale, multi-physics, numerical models for flow and transport in porous media. Read the rest of this entry »

New SIAM Board and Council members elected

The following people have been elected for three-year terms beginning January 1, 2011.

Board of Trustees

C. T. Kelley

Robert V. Kohn

Council Members-at-Large

Oscar P. Bruno

Angelika Bunse-Gerstner

Margot Gerritsen

Mary Silber

The 2010 SIAM election closed on November 1. We are grateful to all who ran as candidates in this election.

Making math real with Moody’s Mega Math Challenge

As America strives to become more competitive in the global economy, many schools across the U.S. are increasing their focus on math and science education and pushing for higher standards in science, technology, engineering, and math courses. Of equal importance, however, is the students’ ability to apply their knowledge to real-world issues: a skill that will eventually allow them to translate their education to successful careers in research and industry.

That is the idea behind Moody’s Mega Math (M3) Challenge, an applied math modeling contest for high school juniors and seniors funded by The Moody’s Foundation and organized by the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM).

The realistic focus of the contest–which is different from what students routinely encounter in standard school curricula–spotlights math as a powerful problem solving tool and educates participants on its relevance to worldly issues. For instance, participating teams in past years have pondered the effectiveness of ethanol as biofuel and have proposed ideas to improve the U.S. Census count.

“Being involved in this project (the M3 Challenge), I saw how pertinent [math] is to the everyday life of the average American citizen,” said Scott Yu, whose team won the top prize in the 2010 Challenge. “Seeing the tremendous role statisticians and mathematicians can have on American society–that was tremendously valuable and important to me.” Read the rest of this entry »

The Mathematical Sciences in 2025

At the request of the NSF Division of Mathematical Sciences, the National Academies Board on Mathematical Sciences & Their Applications is conducting a study of the health of the mathematical sciences. The study – called The Mathematical Sciences in 2025 – is a forward-looking examination of our field. Find more information about the study committee and its meetings here.

On Saturday, January 8, 2011, the chair and vice-chair of the study–Thomas Everhart, President Emeritus of Caltech, and Mark Green, Professor of Mathematics at UCLA–will lead a Town Hall session at the Joint Mathematics Meetings in order to collect input from the community.

They will explain the purpose of the study and then open the floor for perspectives from audience members. They are requesting 3-minute statements on (a) major research trends and opportunities over the next 15 years and/or (b) stresses affecting the mathematical sciences.

The session, which will run from 4:30-5:20 PM in Balcony L, 4th Floor, of the New Orleans Marriott, may be of particular interest to those attending the Joint Mathematics Meetings and will give them an opportunity to present their views.

National Research Council Committee on Research Universities Holds Second Meeting

On November 22, the National Research Council (NRC) convened the second meeting of the Committee on Research Universities.  The Committee is conducting a study requested by Congress in June 2009 to answer the question “What are the top ten actions that Congress, the federal government, state governments, research universities, and others could take to assure the ability of the American research university to maintain the excellence in research and doctoral education needed to help the United States compete, prosper, and achieve national goals for health, energy, the environment, and security in the global community of the 21st century?”  During the three day meeting, the Committee heard from Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN), one of the congressional requesters of the report; several federal agency representatives including from the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the Department of Energy (DOE); and convened three different “focus groups” to discuss issues facing research universities. Read the rest of this entry »

SIAM Student Chapters Awarded Funding for 2010-2011

SIAM awarded a total of $31,608.22 to the following 65 chapters for activities taking place during the 2010-2011 academic year. Activities include seminars, workshops, regional student conferences, guest lectures, special presentations and field trips. For more information, go to the SIAM Student Chapters page and click on the school name for SIAM’s Information Page or click on to go to the Chapter’s own homepage. Read the rest of this entry »

Pacific Institute for Mathematical Sciences

International Graduate Training Centre in Mathematical Biology

The PIMS International Graduate Training Centre in Mathematical Biology invites applicants for IGTC fellowships for the 2011–2012 academic year. Fellowships are worth up to $10K a year and are for students working in mathematical biology at PIMS universities (Alberta, British Columbia, Calgary, Regina, Saskatchewan, Simon Fraser, and Victoria).

Faculty members who know of students who have demonstrated excellence and who are currently applying to or are already enrolled in PIMS graduate programmes are urged to encourage these students to apply.

There are also opportunities for students to enroll in the programme. All students can benefit from IGTC graduate training elements, including annual research summits, summer courses, new term-time courses, seminars, graduate student exchanges, and international visitors.

Full details about the IGTC Programme and the application process can be found at:

Students with further questions can contact: IGTC coordinator, Maryna Yaskina,, or programme director Mark Lewis,

The application deadline is February 8, 2011.