International Conference focuses on Women in Mathematics
For the first time, an International Conference of Women Mathematicians (ICWM 2010) is being organized on the sidelines of the International Congress of Mathematicians (ICM 2010). It will take place from August 17 to 18, 2010, at the University of Hyderabad in Hyderabad, India.
In the earlier ICM’s there have always been women mathematicians and women speakers, panel discussions on women in mathematics, their achievements, and the problems they face in the profession. However, this year marks the first time that a separate conference is being held with a focus on women in mathematics.
The European Women in Mathematics (EWM) approached the organizing committee of the International Congress of Mathematicians with a proposal to hold a two-day conference prior to ICM 2010. The organizing committee accepted the proposal whole-heartedly and set up a committee of Indian mathematicians (both women and men), with Professor Shobha Madan (Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur) as the chair, to plan and to hold the conference. An international scientific committee with Professor Ulrike Tillmann (Oxford University, UK) as the chair was entrusted with the task of drawing up the scientific schedule of the conference as well as arrange a panel discussion on women in mathematics.
As a prelude to the ICWM 2010, the Indian organizing committee felt that a start had to be made in India to bring women mathematicians together. Such a conference was organized in October 2009 at the Jawaharalal Nehru University, Delhi of women mathematicians in India. This meeting, though aimed at women mathematicians, was attended by a sizable number of men too and although the talks were primarily by women, there were men too who presented talks as well as participated in the discussion on the problems facing women in mathematics in India.
ICWM 2010 is aimed principally at women mathematicians attending the ICM (though men are also very welcome to attend), young women mathematicians from Asia and developing countries in particular. There will be nine colloquium-style lectures aimed at a general mathematical audience. It is hoped that participants will have an opportunity to interact with other women mathematicians about to take part in the ICM as well.
A panel discussion titled `Women mathematicians around the world’ will be held on August 17, which will be co-ordinated by Professor Beatrice Pelloni, University of Reading, UK. This session will focus on the diverse problems and challenges facing women mathematicians in different parts of the world. Panellists from a variety of backgrounds will briefly describe the situation in their region and talk about initiatives that have been taken to bring women together and help advance their careers. The general discussion, which this would generate, will provide a chance to understand and share the varied situations of women in different cultures, and to explore possible initiatives that might be helpful.
For further information: http://www.iitk.ac.in/icwm2010