Skip to main content

IMU-Net 9: January 2005

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


Among the many changes in the mathematical world, the active presence of more and more mathematicians originating from developing countries is striking. The fact that the International Congress took place in Beijing in 2002 is just one of the many manifestations of this fact.

IMU considers this engagement as one of its priorities, and devotes considerable attention to the development of mathematical education and research, albeit with a necessarily limited budget. In that direction, the active contribution of more developed countries is essential:

  • through encouraging contacts with individuals and institutions from developing countries
  • through providing privileged access to scientific literature

At the last General Assembly of IMU, it was recommended that more countries be encouraged to become members of IMU, not only to recognize the activity of mathematicians in these countries, but also to ensure a long term commitment to the development of science. Again countries already members of IMU should play a critical role in this process.

In this task as in others, IMU needs your active help. Do not only ask: what is IMU doing, but more to the point: what are we doing for IMU.

Jean-Michel Bismut
Vice-President of IMU

News from IMU

Logo blurb
The IMU logo competition will end on 20 February 2005. Please send all submissions electronically to Further details may be found on the IMU website at
The logo selection will be determined by May 2005.

The Executive Committee of IMU sent five postal ballots to its Adhering Organizations for voting.

All five postal ballots were passed by a majority vote. Brazil and Spain have changed from Group III to Group IV as of 1 January 2005. Indonesia and Pakistan have been admitted to the union in Group I as of 1 January 2005, and Victor Vassiliev is officially a member of the EC through December 2006.

The EC of IMU is preparing its first circular letter for 2005 that will be sent at the beginning of March 2005 to the Adhering Organizations and Committees for Mathematics.


A new author will have questions. Will every submission be carefully refereed? May the editor make cosmetic changes to a manuscript? Just what does happen to a paper between submission and rejection (or eventual acceptance)? How does one select an 'appropriate' journal for one's paper? There's lots of possible questions, and some of those questions are good ones.
In practice, we rely on mentoring --- opinion and anecdote --- from our experienced peers and seniors. Certainly, I'd like some of such advice. If you have interesting opinion and useful (or horrifying) anecdote please whisper those to (Alf van der Poorten); subject: Advice to young authors [other subject lines may activate my SPAM filter]. One day, real soon now, your remarks may form part of a CEIC Best Practice Statement. Anonymity is guaranteed unless, perhaps, you insist on taking credit.
In the meantime, I offer --- as a mildly relevant sample --- an 'advice to referees' <> that Andreas Stein and I wrote when editing a recent conference volume.
Q: How do you know you're in the hands of the mathematical mafia?
A: They make you an offer you can't understand

ICM 2006

Mathematical Software
A session on Mathematical Software shall be organized to attract a broad audience - researchers, students, teachers, etc. - with a special interest in software topics. The general aim is to present mathematical software systems and their applications, including implementations of specially designed algorithms. The topics shall fit the description of the scientific sections of the Congress (see

Submission of abstracts shall start on 1 January 2006 with a deadline of 30 March 2006. The Local Program Committee shall notify authors of acceptance/rejection of their contribution before 30 May 2006. Further information, as well as the precise interactions on how to prepare a contribution, shall be posted at the home page of the ICM by the end of 2005. Each registered participant shall have the opportunity to present a unique contribution in the form of a short communication, a poster, or mathematical software.

Preliminary list of accepted satellite conferences:

  • XV Fall workshop on Geometry and Physics, Tenerife 11-15 September
  • Geometry Conference in honour of N. Hitchin, Madrid 4-9 September
  • Satellite Conference on Singularities and Differential Equations, Tordesillas (Valladolid) 4-8 September
  • VII Workshop on Symplectic and Contact Topology, GESTA-2006, Madrid 16-19 August
  • International Seminar on Applied Geometry in Andalucia, Granada 5-9 September
  • Trends and topics in the future of combinatorial and computational geometry, Alcal? de Henares (Madrid) 31 August-5 September
  • Geometry and Topology of low dimensional manifolds, Burgo de Osma (Soria), 31 August-2 September

Subscribing to IMU-Net

There are two ways of subscribing to IMU-Net:

  1. Click here with a Web browser and go to the "Subscribe" button to subscribe to IMU-Net online.
  2. Send an e-mail to with the Subject-line: Subject: subscribe


In both cases you will get an e-mail to confirm your subscription so that misuse will be minimized. IMU will not use the list of IMU-Net emails for any purpose other than sending IMU-Net, and will not make it available to others.

Previous issues can be seen here.