Past Public Lecture

12 May 2016
16:30
to
18:00
Marcus du Sautoy
Abstract

Science is giving us unprecedented insight into the big questions that have challenged humanity. Where did we come from? What is the ultimate destiny of the universe? What are the building blocks of the physical world? What is consciousness?

‘What We Cannot Know’ asks us to rein in this unbridled enthusiasm for the power of science. Are there limits to what we can discover about our physical universe? Are some regions of the future beyond the predictive powers of science and mathematics? Are there ideas so complex that they are beyond the conception of our finite human brains? Can brains even investigate themselves or does the analysis enter an infinite loop from which it is impossible to rescue itself? 

To coincide with the launch of his new book of the same title, Marcus du Sautoy will be answering (or not answering) those questions. He will also be signing copies of the book before and after the lecture.

To book please email external-relations@maths.ox.ac.uk

26 April 2016
17:00
Tadashi Tokieda
Abstract

Would you like to come see some toys?

'Toys' here have a special sense: objects of daily life which you can find or make in minutes, yet which, if played with imaginatively reveal surprises that keep scientists puzzling for a while. We will see table-top demos of many such toys and visit some of the science that they open up. The common theme is singularity.

Tadashi Tokieda is the Director of Studies in Mathematics at Trinity Hall, Cambridge and the Poincaré Professor in the Department of Mathematics, Stanford.

To book please email external-relations@maths.ox.ac.uk

6 April 2016
17:00
Andrea Bertozzi
Abstract
In the USA, law enforcement agencies have discovered that partnering with a team of mathematicians and social scientists from UCLA can help them determine where crime is likely to occur and so enable them to stop it before it happens.
 
In this lecture Andrea Bertozzi will tell the story behind her role on the UCLA team that developed a 'predictive policing' computer programme that zeros-in on areas that have the highest probability of crime. She will also discuss how mathematics play an increasing role in studying crime, especially gang crime. 

 

To book please email external-relations@maths.ox.ac.uk

16 December 2015
16:30
Professor Marcus du Sautoy
Abstract

Our Christmas Public Lecture this year will be presented by Marcus du Sautoy who will be examining an aspect of Christmas not often considered: the mathematics.

To register please email: external-relations@maths.ox.ac.uk

The Oxford Mathematics Christmas Lecture is generously sponsored by G-Research - Researching investment ideas to predict financial markets

25 November 2015
17:00
Professor Martin Bridson
Abstract
Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures - Chairman's Inaugural Public Lecture

 

Symmetry, Spaces and Undecidability 

Professor Martin Bridson

 

Martin Bridson became Head of the Mathematical Institute on 01 October 2015. To mark the occasion he will be giving an Inaugural Chairman's Public Lecture

 

When one wants to describe the symmetries of any object or system, in mathematics or everyday life, the right language to use is group theory. How might one go about understanding the universe of all groups and what kinds of novel geometry might emerge as we explore this universe?

 
The understanding of the possible geometries in dimension 3 is one of the triumphs of 20th century mathematics. Martin will explain why such an understanding is impossible in higher dimensions.
 

To register email external-relations@maths.ox.ac.uk

 

25 November 2015

5.00-6.00pm

Lecture Theatre 1

Mathematical Institute

Oxford

 

Martin Bridson is the Whitehead Professor of Pure Mathematics at the University of Oxford

 

14 October 2015
17:00
to
18:30
Roger Penrose and Jon Chapman
Abstract

Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures

 

MC Escher - Artist, Mathematician, Man 

Roger Penrose and Jon Chapman

 

This lecture has now sold out

 

The symbiosis between mathematics and art is personified by the relationship between Roger Penrose and the great Dutch graphic artist MC Escher. In this lecture Roger will give a personal perspective on Escher's work and his own relationship with the artist while Jon Chapman will demonstrate the mathematical imagination inherent in the work. 

 

The lecture will be preceded by a showing of the BBC 4 documentary on Escher presented by Sir Roger Penrose. Private Escher prints and artefacts will be on display outside the lecture theatre.

 

5pm

Lecture Theatre 1

Mathematical Institute

Andrew Wiles Building

Radcliffe Observatory Quarter

Woodstock Road

OX2 6GG

 

Roger Penrose is Emeritus Rouse Ball Professor at the Mathematical Institute in Oxford

 

Jon Chapman is Statutory Professor of Mathematics and Its Applications at the Mathematical Institute in Oxford

1 October 2015
17:00
Abstract
Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures
 
This lecture has now sold out
 
There will be a special public lecture at 5pm on October 1 in the Andrew Wiles Building at Oxford University, during the week of the Clay Mathematics Institute’s annual Research Conference.  The lecture will be given in English by the French Mathematician Étienne Ghys and will be designed for A-level students (and above). After the lecture, Professor Ghys will be presented with the first Clay Award for the Dissemination of Mathematical Knowledge.
 
Abstract 
Nineteenth century observations of the behaviour of smoke rings and fluid vortices inspired an ingenious but misconceived model of the atom, a flawed proposal that nonetheless gave birth to the modern theory of knots. The chain of ideas has now come full circle with recent theoretical and experimental results on the existence of knotted vortices.
 

Clay Award for Dissemination 

The first Clay Award for Dissemination of Mathematical Knowledge has been made to Étienne Ghys in recognition of his own important contributions to mathematical research and for his distinguished work in the promotion of mathematics. 

Étienne Ghys  is a CNRS Directeur de Recherche at ENS, Lyon.  He has published outstanding  work in his own fields of geometry and dynamics,  both under his own name and under the collaborative pseudonym “Henri Paul de Saint Gervais”—contributions recognised by invitations to speak at the International Congress in 1990 and by his elevation to the French Académie des Sciences in 2004.  He has also given invaluable service to the international mathematical community in many contexts, as a member of the program committee for the ICM in Hyderabad, as a member of the Fields Medal committee in 2014, and through service on many other bodies. 

But it  is through his work in the promotion of mathematics in France and elsewhere that he has become a legend.  He has given numerous carefully crafted lectures to audiences ranging from school children to delegates at the International Congress in 2006, when he gave a beautiful and exceptionally clear plenary lecture on Knots and dynamics.  He has enthusiastically embraced modern technology to aid the exposition of deep ideas, for example during his editorship of Images des mathématiques, which he transformed to an online publication in 2009, and which received more than five million visits over his five-year term of office. He himself has written more than 90 articles for Images, as well as a monthly column in Le Monde.  

He created with others the Maison de mathématiques et informatique  in Lyon and co-founded, with Dierk Schleicher, the International summer school of mathematics for young students. His series of films, produced with Aurélien Alvarez and Jos Leys and published as DVDs and online in many languages, has had a huge impact on high school students.  The first, Dimensionshas been downloaded more than a million times.

 

16 June 2015
16:00
Gábor Domokos
Abstract

In 1995, celebrated Russian mathematician V.I. Arnold conjectured that, contrary to common belief, convex, homogeneous solids with just two static balance points ("weebles without a bottom weight") may exist. Ten years later, based on a constructive proof, the first such object, dubbed "Gömböc", was built. In the process leading to the discovery, several curious properties of the shape emerged and evidently some tropical turtles had evolved similar shells for the purpose of self-righting.

This Public Lecture will describe those properties as well as explain the journey of discovery, the mathematics behind the journey, the parallels with molecular biology and the latest Gömböc thinking, most notably Arnold's second major conjecture, namely that the Gömböc in Nature is not the origin, rather the ultimate goal of shape evolution.

Please email gomboc@maths.ox.ac.uk to register.

10 June 2015
11:30
to
13:00
Abstract

Artist Antoni Malinowski has been commissioned to produce a major wall painting in the foyer of the new Mathematical Institute in Oxford, the Andrew Wiles Building. To celebrate and introduce that work Antoni and a series of distinguished speakers will demonstrate the different impacts and perceptions of colour produced by the micro-structure of the pigments, from an explanation of the pigments themselves to an examination of how the brain perceives colour.

Speakers:

Jo Volley, Gary Woodley and Malina Busch, the Pigment Timeline Project, Slade School of Fine Art, University College London

‘Pigment Timeline’

Dr. Ruth Siddall - Senior Lecturer in Earth Sciences, University College London

‘Pigments: microstructure and origins?’  

Antoni Malinowski

‘Spectrum Materialised’ 

Prof. Hannah Smithson Associate Professor, Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford and Tutorial Fellow, Pembroke College

‘Colour Perception‘

11.30am, Lecture Theatre 1

Mathematical Institute, University of Oxford

Andrew Wiles Building

Radcliffe Observatory Quarter

No booking required

 

10 March 2015
17:00
Cedric Villani
Abstract

Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures

Inaugural Titchmarsh Lecture

10.03.15

Cédric Villani

Birth of an Idea: A Mathematical Adventure 

What goes on inside the mind of a mathematician? Where does inspiration come from? Cédric Villani will describe how he encountered obstacles and setbacks, losses of faith and even brushes with madness as he wrestled with the theorem that culminated in him winning the most prestigious prize in mathematics, the Fields Medal. Cédric will sign copies of his book after the lecture.

5pm

Lecture Theatre 1, Mathematical Institute, Andrew Wiles Building, Radcliffe Observatory Quarter, Woodstock Road, OX2 6GG

Please email villani@maths.ox.ac.uk to register

Cedric Villani is a Professor at the University of Lyon and Director of the Institut Henri Poincaré

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