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Archive for August 2012

Eighth IMACS International Conference on Nonlinear Evolution Equations and Wave Phenomena: Computation and Theory

This is a paid announcement that appeared in SIAM News.

March 25–28, 2013
Athens, Georgia

The Eighth IMACS International Conference on Nonlinear Evolution Equations and Wave Phenomena: Computation and Theory will be held at the University of Georgia, in Athens,  Georgia, March 25–28, 2013.

The conference will focus on computational and theoretical aspects of nonlinear wave phenomena. Interdisciplinary aspects of the subject will be emphasized, as well as interaction between computation, theory, and applications. The conference is sponsored by NSF, UGA, and IMACS.

Honorary Chair: R. Vichnevetsky (USA), (honorary president of IMACS).

General Chair and Conference Coordinator: T. Taha (USA).

Co-Chairs: R. Beauwens (president of IMACS, Belgium), G. Biondini (USA), and J. Bona (USA).

Keynote Speakers: Nicholas M. Ercolani (University of Arizona), Beatrice Pelloni (University of Reading, UK), and Harry Yeh (Oregon State University).

Two tutorials will be given.

Latest Information and AWARDS for Students:
Contact: Thiab Taha, Computer Science Department, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602; (706) 542–3477;

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Office of Naval Research to Host S&T Conference in October

The Office of Naval Research (ONR) will host its biennial Naval Science and Technology (S&T) Partnership Conference October 22-24 in Arlington, Virginia.  Similar to events hosted by ONR’s Army and Air Force counterparts, the conference provides researchers interested in ONR with the opportunity to hear from agency leadership about current priorities and to learn about how specific research ideas may align with them.  As Lewis-Burke Associates LLC has previously reported, the significant autonomy enjoyed by DOD program managers in making funding decisions enhances the importance of building personal relationships and raising profile by attending events like the S&T Conference.  Anticipated speakers at the event include Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, Chief of Naval Research Matthew Klunder, Marine Corps Commandant James Amos, and other senior Navy officials.  ONR program managers will also attend the event, which provides an excellent networking opportunity for interested researchers to engage with staff on future ONR research objectives.

Additional information on the Conference, including a complete agenda and registration information, is available on the ONR website here.

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Travel Grants for MCA 2013

The American Mathematical Society (AMS) has received funds from the National Science Foundation (NSF)  to provide  partial travel support for up to sixty U.S. mathematicians attending the inaugural meeting of the Mathematical Congress of the Americas (MCA) to be held August 5-9, 2013 in Guanajuato, Mexico.

Instructions on how to apply for support are available on the AMS website here. The application period will be September 15-October 31, 2012.  This travel grants program will be administered by the Membership and Programs Department of the AMS.

The program is open to U.S. mathematicians (who must be affiliated with a U.S. institution at the time of travel).  It is expected that the program will provide travel support for both U.S.-based invited speakers (senior mathematicians) and early career mathematicians.  Early career mathematicians (those within six years of their doctorate), women, and members of U.S. groups underrepresented in mathematics are especially encouraged to apply.  Invited speakers from U.S. institutions to MCA 2013 should submit applications, if funding is desired.

Applications will be evaluated by a panel of mathematical scientists under the terms of a proposal submitted to the NSF by the AMS.

Mathematicians accepting grants for partial support of travel to MCA 2013 may not supplement them with any other NSF funds.  Currently, it is the intention of the NSF’s Division of Mathematical Sciences to provide no additional funds on its other regular research grants for travel to MCA in 2013.  However, an individual mathematician who does not receive a travel grant may use regular NSF grant funds, subject to the usual restrictions and prior approval requirements.

All information currently available about the MCA 2013 program, organization and registration procedure is located on the Congress website.

For questions or more information, contact Steven Ferrucci at, 800-321-4267, ext. 4113 or 401-455-4113.

SIAM is a sponsor of MCA 2013.


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DMS Name Change. Or Not.

The mathematical sciences community was embroiled in discussions since the fall of 2011 about whether the name of the Division of Mathematical Sciences (DMS) should be changed to include statistics in the title. Societies, including SIAM, became involved in the discussions through the advisory committee for math and physical sciences (MPS Advisory Committee) at NSF. SIAM, along with its sister societies, sought opinions from the community and provided the MPS AC with the commentary we received.

In his letter to the advisory committee, Associate Director for MPS Ed Seidel states that he has decided to retain the DMS name, but will take other steps to recognize the important role of statistics in the mathematical sciences. In particular, Seidel states that say “whenever appropriate, we will specifically mention ‘statistics’ alongside ‘mathematics’ in budget requests and in solicitations in order to recognize the unique and pervasive role of statistical sciences….”


Documentation on the charge to the advisory committee on this issue, along with a summary of responses, and Seidel’s letter announcing his decision may be found here.

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SIAM John von Neumann Lecture awarded to John Ball

The Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) awarded the 2012 John von Neumann Lecture to Sir John Ball of the University of Oxford in recognition of his deep contributions to our understanding of the mechanics of materials via the calculus of variations and other branches of mathematical analysis.

The citation especially notes his pioneering work on existence theorems and constitutive models for nonlinear elasticity, cavitation in solids, irregular minimizers and material microstructure, and, more recently, defects in liquid crystals.

The John von Neumann Lecture is awarded each year by SIAM to a mathematician or scientist for outstanding contributions to the field of applied mathematical sciences and their effective communication to the community. Established in 1959, SIAM’s flagship lecture is given in honor of the Hungarian-American mathematician after whom it is named, and whose pioneering research encompassed the fields of mathematics, physics, economics, computer science, and statistics.

Professor Ball accepted the prestigious award from SIAM President Nick Trefethen at the Prizes and Awards Luncheon, following which, he delivered The John von Neumann Lecture, Liquid Crystals for Mathematicians, on Tuesday, July 10, at the SIAM Annual Meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

An important and versatile interface for electronic visual displays in a wide range of equipment from calculators to television screens, liquid crystals are the working substance behind a multi-billion dollar industry. Representing a class of soft matter systems that exhibit properties intermediate to solid crystals and isotropic fluids, they present an intriguing subject for mathematical analysis. In a very engaging lecture, Dr. Ball described various branches of mathematics, including partial differential equations, the calculus of variations, multiscale analysis, scientific computation, dynamical systems, algebra and topology, that can explain the math behind liquid crystals. Watch a brief video recapping his prize lecture:

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Barbara Keyfitz receives awards for research and service in applied mathematics

The Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) awards the SIAM Prize for Distinguished Service to the Profession to an applied mathematician who has made noteworthy contributions to the furtherance of applied mathematics on the national level. The 2012 award goes to Barbara Lee Keyfitz of The Ohio State University.

Professor Keyfitz is a fitting recipient of the prize, as evidenced by her long-term and pervasive advocacy of applied mathematics in a career spanning several leadership roles. As the Director of the Fields Institute in Toronto (2004-2008), Keyfitz revitalized applied mathematics programming with initiatives such as the successful Fields-MITACS Industrial Problem-Solving workshops. An innovative graduate industrial research internship program was created for students all over Canada during her term on the Board of Directors of MITACS-NCE (Network of Centres of Excellence), a program that has since expanded to cover all disciplines.  Closer links between SIAM’s US and Mexican communities are owed in part to Keyfitz’s efforts in organizing numerous SIAM-SMM (Mexican Mathematical Society) conferences.  She has served as President of the Association for Women in Mathematics (2005-2006), as SIAM Vice President for Programs (1998-2003), and is currently the President of ICIAM.

If her contributions to the field need any reinforcing, Professor Keyfitz also received this year’s AWM-SIAM Sonia Kovalevsky Lecture for her pioneering and seminal contributions to the field of hyperbolic conservation laws.  In collaboration with Herbert Kranzer, she introduced the novel and important notion of singular shocks and made the original study of their properties.  Her research group also spearheaded the revival of the rigorous treatment of transonic gas flow, now a very active research area.  Important applications of her work include aerodynamics and multiphase flow models in porous media. The AWM-SIAM Sonia Kovalevsky Lecture is awarded annually at the SIAM Annual Meeting to highlight significant contributions of women to applied or computational mathematics.

The Dr. Charles Saltzer Professor of Mathematics at the Ohio State University, Dr. Keyfitz was recognized for her contributions at the SIAM Annual Meeting held in Minneapolis, Minnesota from July 9-13. Dr. Keyfitz delivered the AWM-SIAM Sonia Kovalevsky Lecture, The Role of Characteristics in Conservation Laws, on Monday afternoon and accepted her awards the following day at the Prizes and Awards Luncheon. Watch a brief video recapping her prize lecture:

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IMA workshop and short course

The IMA workshop “Mathematics and the Materials Genome Initiative” will take place September 12-15, 2012.  The goal of the workshop is to inform the mathematical sciences community about research opportunities in MGI and the funding opportunities at NSF under MGI.  The workshop will consist of research presentations, panel discussions, and information sessions.  NSF is planning to send 2 representatives to the workshop. More information about the workshop is available here. Please apply on line for participation.  Funding to attend the workshop is still available.

The IMA will conduct a short course on “Mean Field Games” on November 12-13, 2012.  Yves Achdou, Pierre Cardaliaguet, and Pierre-Louis Lions will be the main lecturers for the course, which will include talks on current research. Online applications are being accepted. More information is available on the IMA site.

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Six outstanding students receive SIAM prizes for math and computing research

The Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM)’s Student Paper Competition selects the best paper submissions each year to recognize noteworthy research work and scholarship by students in applied mathematics and computing. The awards are made based solely on the merit and content of student contributions to the submitted papers. Winners of the SIAM Student Paper Prize are awarded a cash prize of $1000 each, a SIAM Student Travel Award, and a framed, hand-calligraphed certificate.

The 2011 prizes were awarded to Necdet Serhat Aybat (Pennsylvania State University, USA) for the paper, “Unified Approach for Minimizing Composite Norms;” Sungwoo Park (Knight Capital Group, USA) for “Portfolio Selection Using Tikhonov Filtering to Estimate the Covariance Matrix;” and Xiangxiong Zhang (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA) for a paper titled “On Maximum-Principle-Satisfying High Order Schemes for Scalar Conservation Laws.”

The 2012 prizes were awarded to Brittany D. Froese (Simon Fraser University, Canada) for “Convergent Finite Difference Solvers for Viscosity Solutions of the Elliptic Monge-Ampère Equation in Dimensions Two and Higher;” Stefanie Hollborn (Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Germany)  for the paper, “Reconstructions from Backscatter Data in Electric Impedance Tomography;” and Marina Moraiti (University of Pittsburgh, USA) for “On the Quasistatic Approximation in the Stokes-Darcy Model of Groundwater-Surface Water Flows.”

The prize recipients were in attendance to receive their awards at the Prizes and Awards Luncheon held Tuesday, July 10, and presented their winning papers in a Student Days session the following evening as part of the SIAM Annual Meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

For abstracts and more details on the papers, please visit the SIAM Student Paper Prize presentations page.

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SIAM awards undergraduates for exemplary mathematical modeling

The Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) gives the SIAM Award in the Mathematical Contest in Modeling (MCM) to two undergraduate teams judged “outstanding” among hundreds of participants worldwide in the annual MCM administered by the Consortium for Mathematics and Its Applications (COMAP).

The contest inspires students to develop solutions involving mathematical modeling to open-ended problems in two categories: continuous and discrete. SIAM judges pick a winner in each of the two categories among teams determined “outstanding” by COMAP judging.

Both 2011 and 2012 recipients were awarded prizes at the Prizes and Awards Luncheon held on Tuesday, July 10, at the SIAM Annual Meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Enhao Gong, Rongsha Li, and Xiaoyun Wang of Beijing’s Tsinghua University, mentored by their faculty advisor, Jimin Zhang, were winners of the 2011 Continuous Problem “Snowboard Course.” Li was present to accept the award from SIAM President Nick Trefethen.

The award for the 2011 Discrete Problem, “Repeater Coordination,” went to California’s               Harvey Mudd College students Daniel Furlong, Dylan Marriner, and Louis Ryan. Their faculty advisor was Susan Martonosi. Ryan accepted the award on behalf of his team.

The award for the 2012 Continuous Problem, entitled “The Leaves of a Tree,” went to the team from Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, China. Team members Cheng Fu, Hangqi Zhao, Danting Zhu received their awards at the luncheon. Their advisor for the contest was Zhiyi Tan.

The Discrete Problem for 2012 was titled “Camping Along the Big Long River.” University of Louisville students James Jones, Suraj Kannan, and Joshua Mitchell nabbed the SIAM award in this category. They were coached by Changbing Hu. Kannan and Mitchell received the award for the team.

Winners presented their papers in a session of Student Days on Wednesday, July 11.

Student recipients each received a cash award of $300, a SIAM Student Travel Award, complimentary SIAM membership for three years, and a framed, hand-calligraphed certificate for their schools.

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Sergey Nadtochiy of Oxford University is the 2012 SIAG/FME Junior Scientist Prize recipient

The Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) Activity Group on Financial Mathematics and Engineering (SIAG/FME) awards its Junior Scientist Prize to an outstanding junior researcher for distinguished contributions to the mathematical modeling of financial markets. Established in 2010, the prize gives awardees a hand-calligraphed certificate and a plaque.

Sergey Nadtochiy of Oxford University has been awarded the 2012 prize for his impressive contributions to mathematical finance and his original, sophisticated, and rigorous mathematical analysis of challenging problems in volatility modeling and derivative pricing theory.

Nadtochiy delivered the associated prize lecture, Market-Based Approach to Modeling Derivatives Prices on the morning of Tuesday, July 10, and accepted the prize at the Prizes and Awards Luncheon that followed, at the SIAM Annual Meeting held in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

He is a senior postdoctoral research fellow at the Oxford-Man Institute of Quantitative Finance and the Mathematical Institute of the University of Oxford.  He earned a Specialist (MSc) Degree in mathematics from Moscow State University, in addition to an MA and PhD in Operations Research and Financial Engineering from Princeton University.

His research interests are in the areas of market-based models for derivatives prices; optimal investment; static hedging; inverse problems; stochastic analysis; and PDE.


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