School of Mathematics and Statistics

MathWest Workshop 2011


Cheryl Praeger

Proudly supported by

The Faculty of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics and the Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute (AMSI).

AMSI logo

You are invited to attend the MathWest Workshop 2011, a celebration of the first International Mathematical Union (IMU) Executive Committee Australian visit.

The two day workshop contains a dazzling line-up of lectures from the IMU Executive Committee. Don't miss this opportunity to hear from some of the world's most renowned and respected mathematicians in the surrounds of the beautiful University of Western Australia.

Workshop venue

The University Club of Western Australia: Auditorium. Registrations open at 9.30 in the ground floor foyer.

Workshop agenda

Day One - 1 March

Time Activity
10.00am-10.45am Wendelin Werner: Random Surfaces and Fractal Carpets
Download Lectopia recording - note: lecture starts 08:00 minutes in.

10.45am-11.15am Morning Tea
11.15am-12.00pm John Toland: Waves With Prescribed Distribution Vorticity
Download Lectopia recording - note: lecture starts 07:35 minutes in or view the presentation slides

12.00pm-2.00pm Lunch Break
2.00pm-4.00pm Mathematics: How a Nation Plans for the Future - the Spanish,        
Indian and Chinese Experience
Download Lectopia recording - note: lecture starts 03:40 minutes in.

4.00pm-4.30pm Afternoon Tea
6.30pm Dinner at Matilda Bay Restaurant (optional extra)

Day Two - 2 March

Time Activity
10.00am-10.45am László Lovász: General Questions About Extremal Graphs
Download Lectopia recording - note: lecture starts 04:05 minutes in.
10.45am-11.15am Morning Tea
11.15am-12.00pm Marcelo Viana: Entropy, Old and New
Download Lectopia recording - note: lecture starts 04:40 minutes in.
12.00pm-2.00pm Lunch Break
2.00pm-2.45pm Christiane Rousseau: Mathematics of Planet Earth
Download Lectopia recording - note: lecture starts 04:40 minutes in.
2.45pm-3.15pm Afternoon Tea
3.15pm-4.00pm Ingrid Daubechies: Comparing Surfaces Using Mass Transportation
Download Lectopia recording - note: lecture starts 06:00 minutes in.

Key speakers and topics

  • Ingrid Daubechies (Duke University, US) - "Comparing surfaces using mass transportation"
    • Abstract: This talk presents a new approach to define distances between pairs of 2-dimensional surfaces (embedded in 3-dimensional space) that use local structures and global information contained in inter-structure geometric relationships, and that are paired with algorithms that determine these distances (as well as geometric correspondences) automatically. At present, scientists using physical traits to study evolutionary relationships among living and extinct animals analyze data extracted from carefully defined anatomical correspondence points (landmarks). The distance/similarity analysis in our approach bypasses the necessity for this time-consuming procedure, and makes pairwise comparisons feasible for significantly larger numbers of digitized surfaces.

  • László Lovász ( Eötvös Loránd University, Hungary) - "General Questions About Extremal Graphs"
    • Abstract: In the last 60-70 years, many different questions in extremal graph theory have been solved or at least studied. It is now possible to formulate some general questions:
      Is there always a "template" for extremal graphs? Is every extremal graph problem decidable? Is every proof in extremal graph theory just a tricky application of Cauchy-Schwarz? Through many examples and explaining an incomplete analogy with polynomials, Laszlo will sketch some partial answers and conjectures.

  • Christiane Rousseau ( Université de Montréal, Canada) - "Mathematics of Planet Earth"
    • Abstract: MPE 2013 is the acronym of a special year of emphasis on the Mathematics of Planet Earth. The partners are research institutes, learned societies, scientific unions, scientific journals, etc., which will organise both scientific activities and outreach activities. The lecture will start by presenting the initiative, its goals and the different ways to participate. The second part of the lecture will present different mathematical research subjects related to the theme and will go into more detail in one or two.

  • John Toland ( University of Bath, UK) - "Waves with prescribed distribution of vorticity"
    • Abstract: John will discuss a variational theory of steady periodic surface waves in which the distribution function of vorticity in the underlying flow is prescribed. Waves arise from minimizing the total energy and the functional dependence (which is not specified a priori) of vorticity on the stream function emerges as the Lagrange multiplier that comes from constraining the vorticity distribution. The theory does not distinguish between irrotational waves and waves with locally square-integrable vorticity.
  • Marcelo Viana ( Instituto de Matemática Pura e Aplicad, Brazil) - "Entropy, Old and New"
    • Abstract: The notion of entropy (either measure-theoretical or topological) plays an important role in Dynamics, as a conjugacy invariant that measures the system's dynamical richness. Marcelo will introduce the main notions, outline the history of this concept, and discuss some old and new results relating entropy to other parameters of dynamical complexity.

  • Wendelin Werner ( Université Paris-Sud 11, France) - "Random surfaces and fractal carpets"
    • Abstract: Wendelin will discuss various equivalent constructions of a class of natural conformally invariant random fractals. This survey talk is mostly based on joint work with Scott Sheffield, and will be accessible to non-specialists.

A forum entitled "Mathematics: how a nation plans for the future – the Spanish, Indian and Chinese experience" will also feature on the agenda, chaired by Nalini Joshi (University of Sydney), with presentations from:

Lunch and morning and afternoon tea will be provided both days for all registrants and an optional workshop dinner will follow the day's proceedings on 1 March, 6.30pm at Matilda Bay restaurant.


Registration fee for the two days is $55 (incl GST). If you wish to attend the optional dinner, the registration fee is $135 (incl GST). Register now.

Accommodation suggestions

For those who are travelling to Perth, please find a list of recommended places to stay, all within close proximity to The University of Western Australia.

  • Trinity College: motel rooms | from $105/night
  • Located across the road from The University of Western Australia, the motel rooms offer comfort and convenience.

  • Kings Park Motel: 3 star | from $150/night
  • This motel is situated across the road from Kings Park and Botanical Garden and is a 10 minute bus or taxi ride to The University of Western Australia.

  • Sullivan's Hotel: 3 star | from $175/night
  • This hotel overlooks the city centre, Swan River and adjoining Kings Park and Botanical Garden. The University of Western Australia is a 10 minute bus or taxi ride away.


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Last updated:
Friday, 8 April, 2011 3:53 PM