Report for 1995 of the
International Mathematical Union
Professor Jacob Palis
The International Mathematical Union was founded in its present form in
1951. The purpose of the Union is to promote international cooperation in
mathematics, to support and assist the International Congress of
Mathematicians and other international meetings and to encourage and support
other international mathematical activities considered likely to contribute
to the development of mathematical science in any of its aspects , pure,
applied, or education. IMU has two commissions, the
International Commission on Mathematical Instruction
Commission on Development and Exchange.
The International Commission on the History of Mathematics is a joint
commission with the International Union of the History and Philosophy of
The members of IMU are countries. At the moment IMU has
In 1995 information concerning IMU can be found IMU-pages on the World Wide
Web. The pages are located through URL:
Gopher access is possible through the following address:
The IMU server can be accessed via telnet as follows:
no password required
Conferences supported by IMU - 1 9 9 5
The following conference was supported by IMU in 1995, but without
- WORKSHOP ON DYNAMICAL SYSTEMS, held in Montevideo, Uruguay, March 1995.
IMU representative - J.Palis
- 16th ROLF NEVANLINNA COLLOQUIUM IN JOENSUU, Finland, August 1-5, 1995
IMU representative: Olli Lehto
- MODELLING AND OPTIMIZATION OF DISTRIBUTED PARAMETER SYSTEMS WITH
APPLICATIONS TO ENGINEERING, held in Warsaw, July 17-21, 1995
IMU Representative: B.Engquist
- FOURTH AMU PAN-AFRICAN CONGRESS OF MATHEMATICIANS, IFRAM, held in
Marocco, September 18-26, 1995
IMU Representative: J.L.Lions
- VI LATIN AMERICAN CONGRESS ON PROBABILITY AND MATHEMATICAL STATISTICS
(CLAPEM) held in the Univ. Catolica de Valparaiso, Chile, November 20-24, 1995
IMU Representative: K. Parthasarathy
- 3rd INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON APPROXIMATION AND OPTIMIZATION, held in
the Caribbean, Puebla, Mexico, October 8-14. 1995
IMU Representative: J.Palis
- 2nd INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON OPERATIONS RESEARCH held in Havana, Cuba,
October 3-5, 1995
IMU Representative: J. Palis
- MATHEMATICS OF NUMERICAL ANALYSIS - REAL NUMBER ALGORITHMS,
four-week conference held in the summer of 1995, in Park City, Utah
IMU Representative: J.L.Lions
International Commission on Mathematical Instruction - ICMI
Report prepared by Mogens Niss, Secretary
On the 1st January 1995, the new
Executive Committee of ICMI,
elected at the
IMU General Assembly in Switzerland (in August 1994), took office. In 1995
the EC met in Madrid (Spain), 26-27 February. A sub-set of the EC met
informally at the ICMI Study Conference on geometry (see below) held in
Catania, Sicily (Italy) 28 September - 2 October 1996. Beside in meetings,
the work in the EC is conducted by correspondence and electronic
communication under the direction of the President and the Secretary.
In 1995 no new member state joined ICMI, but applications from a number of
countries to do so were received by the EC. Decisions concerning these
applications will be made in 1996.
ICMI continues to have four affiliated study groups, HPM (The International
Study Group for the Relations Between the History and Pedagogy of
Mathematics), IOWME (The International Organisation of Women and Mathematics
Education), and PME (The International Group for the Psychology of Learning
Mathematics), and WFNMC (The World Federation of National Mathematical
The planning of ICME-8, to be held in Sevilla (Spain), 14-21 July 1996, is
in full progress. The Second Announcement with registration forms etc. was
disseminated internationally, on paper and in electronic form, during the
last months of 1995.
In October 1995, the EC decided unanimously, and with great pleasure and
gratitude, to accept the bid submitted by Japan to host ICME-9 in the year
2000. The Congress will be held in Chiba, near Tokyo. Informal contacts
between the Japanese Invitation Committee and ICMI to initiate the
organisation and planning of ICME-9 were established at the end of 1996.
3. ICMI Studies
The mounting and conducting of so-called ICMI studies on crucial themes and
issues in mathematics education was continued in 1995.
The proceedings of the ICMI study conference on Gender and Mathematics
Education, held in Höör (Sweden), 7-12 October 1993, were published in 1995
by Lund University Press. The proceedings are edited by Barbro Grevholm and
Gila Hanna. The final outcome of the ICMI Study, the book Towards Gender
Equity in Mathematics Education - An ICMI Study, edited by Gila Hanna, is to
appear in the ICMI Study Series, published by Kluwer Academic publishers,
early in 1996.
The ICMI Study volume What is Research in Mathematics Education, and What
Are Its Results? (the study conference for which was held in College Park,
Maryland, USA, in May 1994), edited by Jeremy Kilpatrick and Anna
Sierpinska, will be published in the ICMI Study Series (by Kluwer Academic
Publishers). It is expected to appear in the course of 1996.
The study conference for the ICMI Study Perspectives on the teaching of
geometry for the 21st century was held at Università di Catania, Sicily
(Italy) 28 September - 2 October 1995. The International Programme
Committee, appointed in 1994, was chaired by Vinicio Villani, Pisa (Italy).
The Local Organising Committee was chaired by Carmelo Mammana, Catania. The
Discussion Document for this study was published officially in
l'Enseignement mathématique 40, fasc. 3-4, juillet-décembre 1994, pp
345-357, and in the ICMI Bulletin, No. 37, December 1994, pp 6-16. About 75
participants from more than 30 countries attended the conference. ICMI is
grateful to the UNESCO/ROSTE office in Venezia (Italy) which sponsored the
conference with a grant of US$ 3.000.
Reports on each of these studies will be given at ICME-8 in Sevilla.
The EC has decided to devote the next study in the series to The position
and rôle of the history of mathematics in the teaching and learning of
mathematics. The study conference will be held in France in 1997. An
International Programme Committee for the study will be appointed by the EC
in the beginning of 1996.
Ideas concerning future studies include, among others, mathematics education
at the tertiary level, stochastics and probability, mathematics for and from
the work-place, teacher education for the 21st century, visualisation in
mathematics education, the development of mathematics education within a
region during the past 40-50 years, studies of the mathematics classroom.
4. Regional Conferences
The EC has decided to adopt the following (minimum) requirements for
granting the status of ICMI Regional Meeting to a conference under planning:
In 1995, the Proceedings of the ICMI-China Regional Conference, Shanghai,
1994, was published by Shanghai Educational Publishing House.
- There has to be evidence of a broad national support of the meeting;
- There has to be evidence of a fair degree of regional support;
- The conference should have a theme which is of specific significance to
the region at issue;
- An International Programme Committee has to be appointed. It should
include at least one member representing the ICMI EC (not necessarily an EC
member) who is prepared to produce a brief report of the organisation and
proceedings of the conference;
- A conference report in English should be published;
- If ICMI is asked to provide financial support, a budget and a subsequent
brief account, should be made available to the ICMI EC. Normally, only
regional conferences to be held in non-affluent countries will be eligible
to financial support from ICMI.
In 1995, the conference Regional Collaboration in Mathematics Education: An
ICMI Regional Conference was held at Monash University, Melbourne
(Australia), 19-23 April 1995. As this conference took place in a developed
country, ICMI's sponsorship did not involve financial support.
The ICMI EC has agreed to support The Seventh South East Asian Conference on
Mathematics Education (SEACME 7), to be held at Hanoi University of
Technology, Hanoi (Vietnam), 3-7 June 1996, with a grant of US$ 2.000.
5. Other initiatives
Further to a proposal made by Nicolas Balacheff (Grenoble, France) at the
ICMI Study Conference in College Park, Maryland (USA), May 1994, the EC has
decided to appoint an Ad Hoc Committee on the Identity of the Professional
Community of Mathematics Education Researchers. It is hoped that the
Committee, which is chaired by Nicolas Balacheff and Gila Hanna (Toronto,
Ontario, Canada), will be able to give a preliminary report on its work at
ICME-8 in Sevilla (Spain), July 1996.
6. The Solidarity Programme
In 1992 ICMI established a Solidarity Programme to help the development of
mathematics education in countries in which there is a need for it that
justifies international assistance. The first stage in this programme was
the mounting of a Solidarity Fund based on private contributions by
individuals, associations, etc. The Fund is to be activated to support
concrete initiatives and activities that may foster solidarity in
mathematics education between well-defined quarters in developed and less
In 1995 the Fund received a generous donation of Australian Dollars 2.000
from the Mathematics Education Research Group of Australiasia (MERGA).
In 1995 ICMI Bulletin Nos. 38 (June) and 39 (December) were published under
the editorship of the Secretary of ICMI. In 1995, an ISSN-number (1024-3127:
Bulletin - ICMI) was attached to the Bulletin. As from the end of 1995, the
ICMI Bulletin is available in the following electronic forms: In
ASCII-format by direct request to the editor. On the World Wide Web, where
it can be found under the following coordinates on the IMU-pages, through URL:
8. ICMI on WWW
In 1995 information concerning ICMI can be found on the ICMI-pages of the
IMU-pages on the World Wide Web. The pages are located through URL:
ACTIVITIES INVOLVING DEVELOPING COUNTRIES
Report prepared by Pierre Bérard, Secretary
The Commission on Development and Exchanges has offered two programs.
The purpose of CDE Programs is to stimulate, supporting financially
mathematical research activities in developing countries.
As in the past years, the CDE has received many applications an has to make
a strict selection before awarding funding.
- The program "Support to Individual Mathematicians"offers partial travel
support to mathematicians who make an extended research visit in an advanced
mathematical center which commits itself to cover the local expenses. This
program applies both to mathematicians from developing countries and to
mathematicians from advanced countries who visit a mathematical center in a
developing country. This program includes the "IMU-UNESCO Visiting
Mathematician Program" and has been made possible through special funding by
ICSU, UNESCO-ROSTA and UNESCO-ROSTE.
- The program "Support to Conferences" offers partial support for the
academic activities of conferences organized in developing countries.
The CDE has also continued supporting the two research teams.
A list of beneficiaries is given below. The activities of the CDE were make
possible through funding received from IMU, ICSU, Societé Mathématique de
France and UNESCO
CDE 1995 Support to Individual Mathematicians
|N A M E ||RESEARCH FIELDS ||ORIGIN ||RESEARCH VISIT||PROGRAM ||YEAR
|M.N.Ndumum ||Stochastic Anal. and Geometry ||Cameron ||2 months, Warwick, UK ||ROSTA ||95
|T.S. Rao ||Func.Analysis ||India ||1 month, Italy ||ROSTE ||95
|Le Hai Khoi ||Analysis ||Vietnam ||1 month, Sophia Univ., Japan ||ROSTE |
I C S U
|Njkoku ||Appl. Math. ||Nigeria ||1 month. ICPT, Italy ||I C S U|
|T.N. Venkataramana ||Group representation ||India ||1 month Orsay, France ||I C S U ||95
|Gonzalez de Paz ||Appl. Analysis ||Guatemala ||2 months, ICTP ||I C S U ||96
|Qiu ||Complex Anal. ||Brazil ||Denmark, 94 ||I C S U ||96
CDE 1995 Support to Conferences
|Country ||Title of the Meet./Conference ||Organizers ||Year ||Programme
|Argentina ||Workshop on Representation of Lie Groups,Aug 7-20,1995 ||J. Tirao
||95 ||I C S U
|Marocco ||Colloquium in AnalysisJun 19-21, 1995 ||A. Bakali ||95 ||I C S U |
|India ||Winter School Nonlinear Systems, Jan 8-26, 96 ||K.M. Tamizhamani ||95 ||I C S U
|Thailand ||ACM95 (2nd Asian Math.Conf) ||S.Tangmanee ||95 ||I C S U
|India ||Int. Conf. on Discrete Math ||95 ||I M U
|Vietnam ||Int. Conf. on Commutative Algebra and Alg.Geometry ||N.V. Trung ||96 ||I C
CDE 1995 SUPPORT TO RESEARCH TEAMS
|Country ||Research Field ||Head ||Year ||Programme
|Vietnam ||Topology and Singularity Theory ||Le van Thanh ||94/95 ||I C S U
|Benin ||Differential Geometry and Theoretical Physics ||J.P. Ezin ||95 ||I C S U
OTHER SCIENTIFIC ACTIVITIES
International Commission on the History of Mathematics - ICHM
Report prepared by Eberhard Knobloch, 1996
New Editors of Historia Mathematica:
Karen Parshall, USA, and Jan P. Hogendijk, The Netherlands, have taken over
the editorial responsibility of Historia Mathematica and have slightly
changed the Editorial Board. The journal runs well, and has developed a
healthy backlog of submitted high quality papers. We would like to take this
opportunity to thank David Rowe for his deeply appreciated work and his
untiring efforts at the head of the Journal during the last two years.
Past congresses to which the ICHM contributed:
International Workshop "History of science, history of text".
international workshop was organized by Karine Chemla, French member of the
ICHM, on behalf of the EINSTEIN Forum and the Wissenschaftskolleg in Berlin.
It took place in the so-called "Literarrisches Colloquium" in Berlin from
March 30 to April 2, 1995, and brought together scholars from diverse
fields, including history of mathematics, in order to conceptualize problems
inherent in studying the interrelationship between scientific practices and
scientific writing across cultural, geographical and chronological
differences. The proceedings will be published (Akademie-Verlag, Berlin) by
Actualité de Leibniz: Les deux labyrinthes
An international colloquium was organized by Dominique Berlioz and Frédéric
Nef in the Centre Culturel International de Cerisy-la-Salle, France, June
15-22, 1995. Six lectures dealt with History of Mathematics, among them
those of Javier Echeverria, Spanish member of the ICHM, and Eberhard
Knobloch, chairman of the ICHM.
Conflict and cooperation in building the scientific estate:
Bernoulli, other cases and a general perspective. The symposium, that took
place at Groningen, July 5-6, 1995, was organized by the ICHM member Jan van
Maanen. It was held to mark the tercentenary of the appointment of Johann
Bernoulli as Professor of Mathematics at Groningen University.
1695 Christiaan Huygens 1995
This international conference was organized by A. Eyffinger under the
auspices of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences and in
cooperation with the Boerhaave Museum in Leiden and the Museum Hofwijck in
Voorburg. It took place in Leiden and in Voorburg, The Netherlands, July
7-9, 1995. One of the opening addresses (by Joella Yoder) and a whole
session were devoted to Huygens and mathematics. The proceedings will be
published in De seventiende eeuw.
The first European Honours Course in History of Mathematics:
History of the 17th century mathematics, Utrecht, The Netherlands, July 1995
Henk Bos, Utrecht University, organized the course and was one of the six
lecturers, among them being the chairman of the ICHM Eberhard Knobloch, Jan
van Maanen, Dutch member of the ICHM, Kirsti Andersen, Vicechairman of the
ICHM, and Silvia Roero, Italian member of the ICHM. Some 20 advanced
students of history of mathematics participated in the Course, coming from
eleven European countries.
The history of reading the Ancients in mathematics
Karine Chemla, France, Eberhard Knobloch, Germany, and Jeanne Peiffer
organized an international conference on the above subject at the Centre
International de Rencontres Mathématiques (CIRM) in Luminy-Marseille,
France, from October 16 to 20, 1995. It reestablished the tradition of
organizing historical conferences at the CIRM. Its director agreed that a
next conference of such a kind should be organized in 1997. As a
consequence, it can be hoped that conferences on history of mathematics will
take place alternately in Luminy and Oberwolfach, Germany. Some 40
historians of mathematics, coming from 14 countries, participated in this
conference. 26 lectures discussed interesting aspects of the theme.
4th Austrian symposium on history of mathematics
Christa Binder, Austrian member of the ICHM, organized this symposium
entitled "999 years-Austria a part of the global development of
mathematics" at Neuhofen, Austria, November 5-11, 1995. 32 speakers coming
from 10 countries, contributed to the conference.
Workshop on the History of Mathematics in Oberwolfach, November 3-9, 1996.
It will be organized by Kirsti Andersen, Aarhus, Henk J.M. Bos, Utrecht, and
Menso Folkerts, Munich.The subject of the meeting is: "Significant changes
in our picture of mathematics’ past - crucial results of four decades of
research in the history of mathematics". It aims at analyzing the nature and
significance of the results of research in recent decades. Six sub-themes
have been chosen for this approach: Interfaces between mathematics and
social practices, 1850-1950 Mathematics in the Islam period, Interfaces
between mathematics and physics in the nineteenth century, Historical
studies on ethnomathematics, Mathematics in the European Medieval Period,
History of stochastics.
ICHM and the XXth International congress of history of science Liege, July
Organized by the IUHPS/DHS, the Congress will focus on `Science, Technology
and Industry'. The Program Committee is chaired by Charles C. Gillispie
(USA) and the Local Organizing Committee by Robert Halleux, University of
Liége. Two symposia will be organized on behalf of the ICHM: The Heritage of
A.P.Yushkevich, under the responsability of K. Chemla, S. Demidov, E.
Knobloch Formation of a research area and a scientific community: applied
mathematics, under the responsability of G. Israel and J.W. Dauben. These
proposals have been accepted by the local organizing committee of the Liége
Congress. The first circular has been distributed during the fall of 1995.
The address of the Congress office reads as follows: Centre d'Histoire des
Sciences et des Techniques, 15 avenue des tilleuls, B-4000 Li!ge, Belgique,
tel. 32.41/66.94.79, fax 32.41/66.95.47, e-mail CHSTULG@VM1.ULG.AC.BE
The ICHM intends to organize a colloquium on the history of mathematics with
the tentative title "Berlin and its relations to other international
mathematical centers". The proposal has been sent to Philipp Griffiths,
Chairman of the Program Committee, and to the Chairman of the Local
Organizing Comittee in Berlin, Martin Groetschel. The ICHM is still waiting
for an official approval.
The European Honours Course in History of Mathematics
The SOKRATES Inter-university Cooperation Program (ICP) "History of
Mathematics" was established early 1994 with the aim of organizing yearly
Intensive Programs for students in History of Mathematics. 34 universities
are participating in the ICP. The second course on "Nineteenth-century
mathematics" will take place in Palermo, Italy, September 2-20, 1996.
Addresses of the Committee: Mathematical Institute, Utrecht University, c/o
Henk Bos, Postbox 80010, NL 3508 TA Utrecht Netherlands, tel.
18.104.22.168.30; fax 22.214.171.124.94; e-mail email@example.com Department of
mathematics, University of Palermo, c/o Aldo Brigaglia, Via Archirafi 34,
I-90123 Palermo, Italy; tel. 39.91.6040401; fax 39.91.6165425; e-mail
ICHM World Directory of Historians of Mathematics
The new edition, ed. by K. Andersen and M. Dybdahl, University of Aarhus, is
available in print or on a disc (DOS.WP51). The price for a printed copy or
a disc is $8 for residents of Europe and $10 for residents from outside
Europe (postal charges included). Directions for ordering copies:
- Remit the necessary amount of money to the account of the treasurer of
the ICHM. Menso Folkerts, Stadtsparkasse Munich, Haidhauser Strasse 1,
81675 Munich, Germany, Account number 28-267953 (bank code number 701 500
00), key word: World Directory.
- Send an order to Menso Folkerts, Institut fuer Geschichte der
Naturwissenschaften, Ludwig- Maximilians-Universitaet Munich, Museumsinsel,
Postfach, 80306 Munich, Germany See Historia Mathematica 22 (1995), 470.
The ICHM hopes that its National Members will help in making the existence
of the new edition known.
Ongoing ICHM projects
Photo Archive in Leipzig. The chairman wrote to the University of Leipzig in
order to help Hans Joachim Ilgauds to continue his work with regard to the
Photo Archive. For the time being the ICHM has to wait further on for a
clarification of the situation at Leipzig Institute.
Revised ICHM Bibliography
Albert Lewis plans to work with the AMS in producing an on-line version of
the ICHM annotated bibliography. The ICHM will give reasonable amount of
money in order to help to realize this project.
ICHM Dictionary on History of Mathematics
The Dictionary project edited by John Fauvel continues to progress. It is to
be published by Oxford University Press. Anyone interested in the progress
of the project should contact John Fauvel, Mathematics Faculty, The Open
University, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA, England.
ICHM Historiography project
The ICHM is in the last stages of completing a final draft of a major
cooperative effort: Historiography of the History of Mathematicas. At
present, nearly forty colleagues from all parts of the world are
collaborating to describe the history of history of mathematics from the
first historical writings on mathematics by the ancient Greeks and Chinese,
to the present. The work will be finished presumably in 1996.
The ICHM wishes to contribute. Suggestions are welcome.
A still rather new journal for the History and Philosphy of Science and
Technology is Neusis. Greek historians and philosophers of science and
technology edit this journal which appears biannually. The second volume
appeared in spring 1995. All papers, book reviews, etc. are published in
Greek. Submitted papers, written in other languages are translated into
Greek, if they are accepted for publication. There is a big effort also to
translate into Greek and to publish less recent papers who contributed to
shape the discipline. This applies, in particular, to history of
mathematics. The editorial office is headed by Jean Christianidis, Greek
member of the ICHM.
Adresses of the ICHM Chairman and Secretary:
Technische Universitaet Berlin, Rohrdamm 22,
6 rue des deux gares,
fax at CNRS (UPR 21): 33.1/126.96.36.199
IMU published one bulletin in 1995. The 10th World Directory of
Mathematicians came out during the summer of 1994.
ICMI published 2 Bulletins, both supported by UNESCO grants. Other
publications by ICMI were described above. ICHM also had several
publications in 1994; they are described above in the topic of the ICHM
The Executive Committee of IMU met once this year: on May 11-12, 1995,
Collège de France, Paris.
members (countries) = 60
8 (IMU ) + 3 (ICMI ) + 6 (CDE ) + 7 (ICHM) = 24 conferences supported
1 (IMU) + 2 (ICMI) = 3 bulletins; most conferences published their proceedings.