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Researchers from UT-Austin and University of Colorado discuss uncertainty in storm predictions

How can mathematical models help in the prediction of storms and hurricanes? How do they help determine the uncertainty that underlies extreme weather conditions? Understanding these answers can help reduce the human and monetary costs associated with natural disasters. Lindley Graham of the University of Texas at Austin and Troy Butler of the University of Colorado explain how such models and simulations help us better understand natural disasters in this video:

NSF-SIAM Symposium on Mathematical and Computational Aspects of Materials Science at CSE15

The 2015 SIAM Conference on Computational Science and Engineering (CSE15) will host a one-day Symposium on Mathematical and Computational Aspects of Materials Science.  The symposium is sponsored jointly by the National Science Foundation and SIAM.  CSE15 will be held in Salt Lake City, and the symposium is scheduled for Saturday, March 14, 2015. Ten leading researchers from the materials science and mathematical sciences communities will give their perspective on areas of research where mathematicians and materials scientists can find exciting opportunities for significant collaboration. A panel session is part of the symposium, where the directors of the NSF divisions for Mathematical Sciences (DMS) and Materials Research (DMR) will describe existing mechanisms for funding collaborations. Details can be found on the symposium web site



New method helps map species genetic heritage

From the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign News Bureau: 

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Where did the songbird get its song? What branch of the bird family tree is closer to the flamingo – the heron or the sparrow?

These questions seem simple, but are actually difficult for geneticists to answer. A new, sophisticated statistical technique developed by researchers at the University of Illinois and the University of Texas at Austin can help researchers construct more accurate species trees detailing the lineage of genes and the relationships between species.

The method, called statistical binning, was used in the Avian Phylogenetics Project, the subject of a Dec. 12 special issue of the journal Science.

“A species tree is a way of describing how a species evolved from a common ancestor,” said study leader Tandy Warnow, Founder Professor of Bioengineering and Computer Science at the University of Illinois. “Researchers use a species tree to do all sorts of things, like figure out when different traits came into being, and what triggered that trait evolution, and how those things may or may not have been triggered by environmental changes.” Read the rest of this entry »

Travel Awards deadline for ICIAM15 extended

The deadline for applications for travel awards to attend ICIAM 2015 is fast approaching. Due to the extension of the ICIAM15 minisymposium acceptance notification to December 15, the SIAM travel awards deadline has been extended to January 9, 2015. There’s less than a month left. Apply now!

To submit an application, go to Read the terms of the grants and follow the instructions.

Levent Alpoge to Receive 2015 AMS-MAA-SIAM Morgan Prize

From the American Mathematical Society:

Providence, RI—Levent Alpoge will be awarded the 2015 AMS-MAA-SIAM Frank and Brennie Morgan Prize for Outstanding Research by an Undergraduate Student in Mathematics.  A graduate of Harvard University, Alpoge is currently at Cambridge University undertaking Part III of the Mathematical Tripos as a Churchill Scholar.  The Morgan Prize, jointly sponsored by the American Mathematical Society, the Mathematical Association of America, and the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, will be awarded at the Joint Mathematics Meetings in January in San Antonio, Texas.

Alpoge is honored “for several contributions in the fields of number theory, probability, and combinatorics.”

Although he has yet even to begin graduate studies in mathematics, Alpoge has already authored or co-authored seven research papers and has established a substantial record of proposing innovative solutions to difficult problems.  Read the rest of this entry »

SIAM Unwrapped December 2014

News & announcements for the SIAM membership community

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This issue of SIAM Unwrapped brought to you with partial support from:


Unwrapped_icon_finalDear SIAM members,

Be sure to renew your SIAM and SIAG memberships for 2015. Free student members must renew too, and all students can get up to 2 SIAG memberships for FREE!

SIAM’s Member Get a Member promotion is ending soon! There are only a couple weeks left for an opportunity to win an iPad, a free SIAM Membership, conference registration, or book.

Do you know other mathematicians or scientists that could benefit from the value of SIAM membership?  Encourage them to join today! Read the rest of this entry »

Transforming Post-Secondary Education in Mathematics

The recently published report from the TPSEMath group (Transforming Post-Secondary Education in Mathematics) addresses the issues to be discussed at the upcoming CBMS Council meeting on December 5 and provides excellent background reading for the discussions planned for the CBMS meeting.  It frames the issues well, discusses specific findings, makes recommendations, and includes brief description of some of the ongoing efforts at transformation.  The report is available online.  We will have hard copies for all attendees at the meeting (thanks to Tara Holm for making these available).  All the slides of the presentations from last month’s CBMS Forum focusing on these issues are also available on the CBMS website.

Merck Researcher Jeff Sachs on mathematical models for drug discovery

Jeff Sachs of Merck Research Laboratories explains how mathematical models can make seemingly insurmountable amounts of data in medicine and biotechnology more manageable and informative. How can models be designed to uncover information we need from medical data in order to determine actions to be taken and decisions to be made in drug discovery and development?

Watch the video to learn how:

Chorin and Kailath receive National Medal of Science

Philadelphia, PA–On November 20th at a White House ceremony, President Obama honored the newest recipients of the National Medal of Science and the National Medal of Technology and Innovation. The highest honors bestowed by the United States government for achievements in science, technology, and innovation, the awardees are recognized for their outstanding contributions in fields such as biology, physics, and math, and their vision, creativity and intellect in technology and innovation.

Two SIAM members are among the awardees this year: Read the rest of this entry »

UMBC chapter participates in Maryland Howard County Math Festival

On Tuesday November 18, the second annual Howard County Math Festival was held at Centennial High School in Maryland.  Members of the SIAM Student Chapter at UMBC (Samuel Khuvis, Jonathan Graf and Sarah Swatski) volunteered to have a table at the event to demonstrate the real-world applications of mathematics.  We also were able to promote mathematics by sharing our experiences as young mathematicians in a Math Related Majors for College Students session. Read the rest of this entry »