News from the Institute for Mathematics & its Applications
The Institute for Mathematics and its Applications has a new director as of Aug. 27. Douglas N. Arnold, a Distinguished Professor of Mathematics at Pennsylvania State University, replaced Willard Miller, who returned to the mathematics faculty. In addition, Doug's wife, Carme Calderer, also a professor of mathematics at Penn State, joined the Minnesota mathematics faculty. Doug and Carme are very familiar with the IMA program: Doug, a numerical analyst was in residence at the IMA pursuing research in scientific computation (1986-1987) and materials science (1995-1996). He also recently served on the IMA Board of Governors. Carme, whose research interests include mathematical studies of liquid crystals, was a postdoctoral researcher (1984-1985) and a visiting researcher in 1986-1987 and 1995-1996 at the IMA.
During his four-year term as director, Willard together with associate director Fadil Santosa led the IMA through a successful recompetition for funding of math institutes by NSF. They also established the industry-related HOT TOPICS program and accelerated the Internet distribution of IMA programming.
The IMA's mission is to demonstrate the power of sophisticated mathematics in solving problems that arise in other sciences, engineering and industry. The IMA is host to more than 100 long-term postdocs, visiting scholars and other experts each year, with nearly 1,000 more attending a dozen weeklong workshops.
Through a unique industrial postdoctorate and seminar program, led by Deputy Director Fadil Santosa, the IMA helps students and other mathematical researchers learn about research opportunities in industry and allows corporate participants to benefit from the mathematicians' expertise. For details about this program see www.ima.umn.edu/ industrial/index.html .
Doug's vision for the IMA includes an increased emphasis on computation: "The digitalization of all areas of science and technology means that there is a place for computation in all programs of the IMA" (interview with Allyn Jackson of the AMS Notices, August 2001). He is very interested in continuing to develop the institute's role as a training center where people can learn about new areas of research in which the mathematical sciences can make significant contributions. He will continue the HOT TOPICS workshops and expand them to include problems coming from other sciences. We in the School of Mathematics are especially pleased to hear that Doug plans to continue the close relationship that exists between the School and the IMA.
During the 2000-2001 academic year IMA researchers focused on "Mathematics in Multimedia," including vision, speech and language modeling, digital libraries, computer graphics and geometric design. There were also industry-related "Hot Topics" Workshops on "Mathematics of the Internet: E-Auction and Markets," December 3-5, 2000, "Analysis and Modeling of Industrial Jetting Processes," January 10 - 13, 2001, "Mathematical Opportunities in Large-Scale Network Dynamics," August 6-7, 2001 and "Wireless Networks," August 8-10, 2001. The summer program was "Geometric Methods in Inverse Problems and PDE Control," July 16-27, 2001. In addition there were two special workshops intended to encourage greater participation of women and minorities in mathematics research: "Connecting Women in Mathematical Sciences to Industry," September 8-10, 2000 and "Minorities and Applied Mathematics - Connections to Industry and Government Laboratories," May 4-6, 2001. There is extensive documentation of these programs on the IMA web site www.ima.umn.edu, including copies of transparencies, power point presentations and in some cases, streaming audio and video.
The September 2001-June 2002 annual program is "Mathematics in the Geosciences." During the Fall Quarter (September-December, 2001) the focus is on Dynamical Systems and Ergodic Theory, followed by Multiscale Phenomena and Renormalization during the Winter Quarter (January-March, 2002), and Inverse Problems and the Quantification of Uncertainty during the Spring Quarter (April-June, 2002). For further details see: www.ima.umn.edu/geoscience/index.html.
IMA UPDATE, a periodic notice concerning the activities of the Institute for Mathematics and its Applications, is available as an HTML/email document. The UPDATE contains hyperlinks to information about past, present and future IMA programs, as well as links to materials presented at IMA workshops: video, audio, movies, slides, etc. If you would like to be added to the mailing list, please send a message to email@example.com.
Doug Dokken, who earned his Ph.D. from our department in 1985 under the direction of Professor Robert Ellis, was kind enough to give us a report about his work at the IMA during the current academic year, 2001-2002. His lively report gives a good picture of this year's IMA activities and their relevance to one very interesting area of applications. We note that Doug is the vice-president of the Twin Cities Chapter of the American Meteorological Society.