Congress is over…now, bring on the mathematicians

It’s the mathematicians’ turn to visit Keele campus this week and next as York hosts two events for the calculator set during the annual joint conference of the organizations known as CAIMS and MITACS.

The annual conference for the Canadian Applied and Industrial Mathematics Society (CAIMS) and the research group Mathematics of Information Technology and Complex Systems (MITACS) begins Friday, June 16, and runs through June 20, and features a wide selection of scientific sessions. Included are the 17th Canadian Symposium on Fluid Dynamics as well as sessions on mathematics for industry, finance, computing, nonlinear dynamics in the health sciences, data mining, image processing, and communication and security.

Jianhong WuA week of seminars being held in conjunction with the conference and running through June 20, began on Saturday with the Summer School for Mathematical Modeling of Infectious Diseases, chaired by York’s Canada Research Chair in Applied Mathematics, Jianhong Wu (right). Along with his colleague in the Department of Mathematics, Prof. Huai Ping Zhu, Wu will speak at the school, which is designed for epidemiology and public-health graduate students, medical residents and graduate students in interdisciplinary science programs, in addition to those in the traditional mathematics and statistics graduate programs.

The summer school presents public lectures on various days through June 20, in Room 0005 TEL Bldg. on York’s Keele campus, except for the June 14 events, which will be at The Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences, at 222 College St. in Toronto.

At the summer school event, the MITACS team looking at the spread of infectious diseases, which Wu leads, will announce recent findings from their research into West Nile virus, avian flu, pandemic influenza and SARS. They will illustrate how mathematical modelling is providing a scientific framework to support the control and management of such diseases if, and when, they occur. In particular, because a vaccine for protection from a pandemic strain of influenza cannot be produced until the new strain has emerged and been identified, mathematicians are developing a model to show the most effective way to use the available vaccines and other anti-viral drugs in the meantime.

Peter TaylorThe program for the CAIMS-MITAC conference includes the 17th Canadian Symposium on Fluid Dynamics, June 17-19, featuring Peter Taylor (right), professor in York’s Centre for Research in Earth & Space Science, as one of its keynote speakers. The study of fluids and how they move has implications for the study of weather patterns on Earth and on Mars. A member of York’s Faculty of Science & Engineering, Taylor is a specialist in the study of the boundary layer of Earth’s atmosphere and a member of York’s 2007 Phoenix Mission to Mars meteorological team. On June 17, he will illustrate his talk on mathematical applications in weather research using examples from the Phoenix project, as well as his many travels around the globe.

Gary KlaassenGary Klaassen (left), professor in York’s Department of Earth & Space Science & Engineering, will give a talk on wave theory on Saturday, June 17. Prof. Klaassen’s research looks at the dynamics of movement in Earth’s atmosphere and its oceans.

The CAIMS-MITAC conference also includes a special presentaion by Canadian astronaut Col. Chris Hadfield, who will speak to students about “Mathematics and Space Exploration”. Hadfield has the distinction of being the first Canadian to operate the Canadarm in orbit, the only Canadian to board the Mir Space Station, and the first Canadian to perform a spacewalk. All are welcome to attend this public talk on June 18 at 2pm in Lecture Hall A of the Computer Science & Engineering Building.

In addition to the many research paper presentations, there will be four plenary speakers from Oxford, McGill and Cornell Universities, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as an exhibition featuring posters and demonstrations by university students, research associates and faculty.

For more information and a schedule of events, see the CAIMS-MITACS conference Web site.