IMU-Net 22: March 2007
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IMU-Net 22: March 2007

A Bimonthly Email Newsletter from the International Mathematical Union
Editor: Mireille Chaleyat-Maurel, Universit&eacute René Descartes, Paris, France


  1. Editorial
  2. Programm Committee Chair for ICM 2010
  3. IMU on the Web
  4. Abel Prize
  5. Ramanujan Prize 2007
  6. ICIAM and developing countries
  7. Lars Ahlfors Centennial Celebration
  8. Euler Year
  9. MathDoc news
  10. Subscribing to IMU-Net


Dear Reader,

As a new Member-at-Large of the IMU Executive Committee, it is my
privilege to welcome you to the March 2007 issue of IMU-NET, the
electronic newsletter of the IMU.

The new Executive Committee began its four-year term on January 1,
2007, and so far it has involved almost daily electronic contact
between members. The Executive Committee looks forward to
communicating through this newsletter information on important
decisions and initiatives it makes. For example, an issue of concern
to mathematicians in many countries is the use, and possible misuse,
of various measures of research quality such as journal impact
factors. This was raised during the IMU General Assembly in Santiago
de Compostela. The Executive Committee is moving towards establishing
a joint committee of the IMU, the International Council for Industrial
and Applied Mathematics, and the Institute of Mathematical Statistics
to consider and report on the "quantitative assessment of research".
More on this initiative is sure to appear in a later issue of IMU-NET.
The Executive Committee, with a rich diversity of members, is
enthusiastically embracing its work. For the first time the Committee
has more than one woman member, and for the first time includes
someone based in Australia, namely me.
In common with many other IMU-NET readers, I appreciate the timely and
informative nature of IMU-NET. I thank the editor, Professor Mireille
Chaleyat-Maurel for the opportunity to write this editorial and wish
her continued success in her role as editor.

Cheryl E. Praeger
Member-at-Large, IMU Executive Committee
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Hendrik W. Lenstra has been appointed Chair of the
Program Committee of the International Congress of Mathematicians 2010
in Hyderabad, India, 19-27 August 2010 by IMU President L. Lovasz.
His coordinates are as follows

Prof. Hendrik W. Lenstra
Mathematisch Instituut, Universiteit Leiden, Postbus 9512
2300 RA Leiden
The Netherlands
e-mail: hwlicm at

If you have proposals concerning the scientific program of ICM 2010
please contact Prof. Lenstra by e-mail.
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Papers and Books on the Internet

Media massaging is not the same thing as media messaging.

An amusing article in Nature, placed on line on January 24, 2007 and
corrected on January 25, suggests that academic journal publishers may
choose to fight the widespread moves to require publicly funded
research to be openly available. I was particularly amused by the
boxed aside quoting a spokesperson as advising that publishers should
issue retaliatory sound bites, misquoted as "Media massaging is not
the same as intellectual debate", and quickly corrected to the
original "Media messaging ... ". My take: this is all just for show.
There's little evidence that preprint publication in open archives or
on university websites inhibits authors' desire for formal journal
publication or the demand of readers for the imprimatur of peer
review. More, recall "The devil you don't know" mentioned at IMU on
the Web #5, where Joseph J. Esposito explains why open access
publishing is more likely a boon than a bane for traditional publishers.

By happenstance, I was also recently alerted to remarks of Klaus
Peters (A. K. Peters Ltd. 'Publishers of Science and Technology')
providing an instructive reminder of the services that publishers can
and do offer us. The principal content of this IMU on the Web is those
remarks turned into a useful essay "Textbooks on the Internet".

For that essay (and for details of my opening remarks) see

Alf van der Poorten (, member of the CEIC.
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4. ABEL PRIZE 2007

The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters has decided to award the
Abel Prize for 2007 to Srinivasa S.R. Varadhan, Courant Institute of
Mathematical Sciences, New York.
He receives the prize for "his fundamental contributions to
probability theory and in particular for creating a unified theory of
large deviation".
The Prize will be presented by His Majesty King Harald of Norway on 22
May 2007.

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The Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) is
pleased to invite nominations for the 2007 Ramanujan Prize for young
mathematicians from developing countries. The Prize is funded by the
Niels Henrik Abel Memorial Fund. The Prize carries a $10,000 cash
award and an allowance to visit ICTP for a meeting where the Prize
winner will be required to deliver a lecture.
The deadline for receipt of nominations is 31 July 31 2007.

The 2005 Prize was awarded to Professor Marcelo A. Viana from IMPA,
Brazil. The 2006 Prize was awarded to Professor Ramdorai Sujatha, Tata
Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai, India.

Please send nominations to describing the
work of the nominee in adequate detail. Two supporting letters should
also be arranged.
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Professor Ian Sloan, President of the International Council for Industrial
and Applied Mathematics, has announced a new scheme to help in promoting
mathematics and its applications in developing countries.  Financial
support is to be given to the organisers of approved conferences
(currently to the extent of $3,000 (US) per conference, for two
conferences per year).  The funds are to be used to provide ICIAM
Fellowships to assist mathematicians from developing countries or regions
to attend the conference.
For full details of the scheme see the ICIAM web site:
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Finland celebrates this year the 100th anniversary of the birth of
Lars Ahlfors, the Finnish Fields medalist of 1936. There will be a
major conference in Helsinki (Finland), 20-24 August 2007, and
considerable public outreach
in conjunction with this event.
See the website:
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On 15 April 2007, the birthday of the great Swiss mathematician and
scientist Leonhard Euler (1707-1783) will recur for the 300th time;
this presents a good occasion for reflecting on his life and his works
in their historical context and in their implications for our time.

During the whole Euler Tercentenary year, the general public will have
various opportunities for encounters with mathematics, the exact
sciences, and their history. These activities are being planned by a
Program Committee under the patronage of the Swiss Academy of Science.
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1. At the end of March 2007, NUMDAM will host the entire digitised archives
of Annali della scuola normale superiore di Pisa, classe di scienze; this
adds 1727 articles, 43249 pages and 3500 links from bibliographies to
articles' full texts. See

2. The CEDRAM (publishing the current electronic edition of some of
the journals at NUMDAM) has completely changed its internal format and
the metadata now lives entirely in two versions: HTML+TeX and
XHTML+MathML, see
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last updated: 2012-07-31