Past Forthcoming Seminars

24 November 2017
Richard Wade and Andrey Kormilitzin

Richard Wade:   Classifying spaces, automorphisms, and right-angled Artin groups 

Right-angled Artin groups (otherwise known as partially commutative groups, or graph groups), interpolate between free abelian groups and free groups. These groups have seen a lot of attention recently, much of this due to some surprising links to the world of hyperbolic 3-manifolds.We will look at classifying spaces for such groups and their associated automorphism groups. These spaces are useful as they give a topological way to understand algebraic invariants of groups. This leads us to study some beautiful mathematical objects: deformation spaces of tori and trees. We will look at some recent results that aim to bridge the gap between these two families of spaces.
Andrey Kormilitzin:   Learning from electronic health records using the theory of rough paths

In this talk, we bring the theory of rough paths to the study of non-parametric statistics on streamed data and particularly to the problem of regression and classification, where the input variable is a stream of information, and the dependent response is also (potentially) a path or a stream.  We informally explain how a certain graded feature set of a stream, known in the rough path literature as the signature of the path, has a universality that allows one to characterise the functional relationship summarising the conditional distribution of the dependent response. At the same time this feature set allows explicit computational approaches through machine learning algorithms.

Finally, the signature-based modelling can be applied to some real-world problems in medicine, in particular in mental health and gastro-enterology.

24 November 2017
Professor Julia Gog

This will be a whistle-stop tour of a few topics on infectious disease modelling, mainly influenza. Topics to include:

  • challenges in capturing dynamics of pathogens with multiple co-circulating strains
  • untangling the 2009 influenza pandemic from medical insurance claims data from the US
  • bioinformatic methods to detect viral packaging signals
  • and a big science project (top secret until the talk!)

Julia will be visiting the Mathematical Institute on sabbatical this term, and hopes this talk will help us find areas of overlapping interests.

  • Mathematical Biology and Ecology Seminar
23 November 2017
Alexander Bradley

It is thought that the hairy legs of water walking arthropods are able to remain clean and dry because the flexibility of the hairs spontaneously moves drops off the hairs. We present a mathematical model of this bending-induced motion, or bendotaxis, and study how it performs for wetting and non-wetting drops. Crucially, we show that both wetting and non-wetting droplets move in the same direction (using physical arguments and numerical solutions). This suggests that a surface covered in elastic filaments (such as the hairy leg of insects) may be able to universally self-clean. To quantify the efficiency of this effect, we explore the conditions under which drops leave the structure by ‘spreading’ rather than translating and also how long it takes to do so.

  • Industrial and Applied Mathematics Seminar
23 November 2017
Matthew Butler

Many species of insects adhere to vertical and inverted surfaces using footpads that secrete thin films of a mediating fluid. The fluid bridges the gap between the foot and the target surface. The precise role of this liquid is still subject to debate, but it is thought that the contribution of surface tension to the adhesive force may be significant. It is also known that the footpad is soft, suggesting that capillary forces might deform its surface. Inspired by these physical ingredients, we study a model problem in which a thin, deformable membrane under tension is adhered to a flat, rigid surface by a liquid droplet. We find that there can be multiple possible equilibrium states, with the number depending on the applied tension and aspect ratio of the system. The presence of elastic deformation  ignificantly enhances the adhesion force compared to a rigid footpad. A mathematical model shows that the equilibria of the system can be controlled via two key parameters depending on the imposed separation of the foot and target surface, and the tension applied to the membrane. We confirm this finding experimentally and show that the system may transition rapidly between two states as the two parameters are varied. This suggests that different strategies may be used to adhere strongly and then detach quickly.

  • Industrial and Applied Mathematics Seminar
23 November 2017

l-adic cohomology was built to provide an etale cohomology with coefficients in a field of characteristic 0. This, via the Grothendieck trace formula, gives  a cohomological interpretation of L-functions - a fundamental tool in Deligne's theory of weights developed in Weil II. Instead of l-adic coefficients one can consider coefficients in ultra products of finite fields. I will state the fundamental theorem of Weil II for curves in this setting and explain briefly what are the difficulties to overcome to adjust Deligne's proof. I will then discuss how this ultra product variant of Weil II allows to extend to arbitrary coefficients  previous results of Gabber and Hui, Tamagawa and myself for constant $\mathbb{Z}_\ell$-coefficients.  For instance,  it implies that, in an $E$-rational compatible system of smooth $\overline{\mathbb{Q}}_\ell$-sheaves all what is true for $\overline{\mathbb{Q}}_\ell$-coefficients (semi simplicity, irreducibility, invariant dimensions etc) is true for $\overline{\mathbb{F}}_\ell$-coefficients provided $\ell$ is large enough or that the $\overline{\mathbb{Z}}_\ell$-models are unique with torsion-free cohomology provided $\ell$ is large enough.

  • Number Theory Seminar
23 November 2017
Tom Zeman

In a recent preprint, Basterra, Bobkova, Ponto, Tillmann and Yeakel
defined operads with homological stability (OHS) and showed that after
group-completion, algebras over an OHS group-complete to infinite loop
spaces. This can in particular be used to put a new infinite loop space
structure on stable moduli spaces of high-dimensional manifolds in the
sense of Galatius and Randal-Williams, which are known to be infinite
loop spaces by a different method.

To complicate matters further, I shall introduce a mild strengthening of
the OHS condition and construct yet another infinite loop space
structure on these stable moduli spaces. This structure turns out to be
equivalent to that constructed by Basterra et al. It is believed that
the infinite loop space structure due to Galatius--Randal-Williams is
also equivalent to these two structures.

  • Junior Geometry and Topology Seminar
23 November 2017
Jean-Francois Chassagneux

In this talk, I consider  the problem of
hedging European and Bermudan option with a given probability. This 
question is
more generally linked to portfolio optimisation problems under weak
stochastic target constraints.
I will recall, in a Markovian framework, the characterisation of the 
solution by
non-linear PDEs. I will then discuss various numerical algorithms
to compute in practice the quantile hedging price.

This presentation is based on joint works with B. Bouchard (Université 
Paris Dauphine), G. Bouveret (University of Oxford) and ongoing work 
with C. Benezet (Université Paris Diderot).

  • Mathematical and Computational Finance Seminar