Welcome to the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications (IMA) blog. The IMA is the UK's learned and professional society for mathematics and its applications. We promote mathematics research, education and careers, and the use of mathematics in business, industry and commerce. Among our activities we produce academic journals, organise conferences and engage with government.

In this blog we will publish mathematical articles and news to reflect the interests of our members who come from a multiplicity of different organisations including university academics, industrial mathematicians, financiers, school teachers, scientists, civil servants etc.

Monday, 1 October 2012

Friendly, informative and entertaining: the IMA Early CareerMathematicians Autumn Conference 2012

I am chairing the next IMA Early Career Mathematicians' conference for autumn 2012 at the University of Greenwich. I am organising this with Noel-Ann Bradshaw at Greenwich and Lizzi Lake at the IMA. As this gets closer I am increasingly excited about it and we have just agreed the programme so I wanted to share that with you here.

This conference will bring together mathematicians from all walks of life for a day of entertaining and interesting mathematics. This will be the tenth in this series of conferences that I have attended (and the 17th in the series to take place) so I know they are a great opportunity for early career mathematicians and students to meet others in similar career stages. Friendships are formed and everyone has a good time. Previous conferences have been described in Mathematics Today reports as "lively and informative", "a friendly and relaxed atmosphere" and "educational, informative and entertaining".

I believe the Early Career conferences have a useful role to play. Many mathematicians find themselves as the only mathematician in their team, or at their company, and the chance to meet others in similar situations in a friendly, mathematically-themed environment can be very valuable. Another beneficiary can be students, by coming into contact with near-peers in employment (both speakers and other delegates). This might help them with a career choice or certainly can get them talking to others who have been through what they are about to go through - getting a job or further study.

The schedule of talks is given at the bottom of this blog post. You will see we start with a hands-on session of puzzles, games and recreational maths, to wake us up and get everyone talking. After lunch, we will hear from four interesting early career mathematicians talking about their work in some diverse areas of mathematics and its applications. Talks will not be maths-heavy (it is the weekend, after all!) and the conference is suitable for anyone with an interest in mathematics.

Hopefully the schedule is flexible enough that people can make it from quite far away; the conference is on a Saturday starting at 11am (and there is a reasonable hostel in Greenwich for those who need to travel the day before).

Please consider attending the conference, and please help us out by promoting it to as many people as possible.

You can register for the conference via a form, available on the IMA website

I look forward to seeing you in Greenwich!

Peter Rowlett MIMA, Conference Chair, IMA Early Career Mathematicians' Autumn Conference 2012.

IMA Early Career Mathematicians' Autumn Conference 2012

Date: Saturday 24 November 2012
Location: University of Greenwich, Old Royal Naval College, Park Row,London SE10 9LS

10:30-11:00Registration, tea and coffee
11.00-11.10Welcome, Peter Rowlett
11.10-11.30Mathematical thinking through puzzles and games, Noel-Ann Bradshaw (University of Greenwich)
11.30-13.00Maths puzzles and games session, Noel-Ann Bradshaw (University of Greenwich), Prof David Singmaster (London South Bank University, retired), Laurie Brokenshire CBE (Royal Navy, retired) and Danny Brown (Greenwich Free School)
14.00-14.30Infection control – how are mathematical models useful? Dr Deirdre Hollingsworth (Imperial College)
14.30-15.00Working as an actuary in insurance, Justin Williams (Hiscox)
15.00-15.30Break, tea and coffee
15.30-16.00Modelling in the railway and energy industries, Geoff Bunce (Matrix Control Solutions)
16.00-16.30The use of uncertainty calculations in nuclear materials accountancy and safeguards, Jacqueline Bishop (Sellafield)
16.30-16.45IMA update, Erica Tyson
16.45-17.00Early Career Mathematicians Group update, Stephen Lee

Following the conference, those who want to will enjoy an informal post-conference dinner nearby. Please say when registering if you will join us for this.


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