Past Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures

19 November 2020
17:00
Anna Seigal

Further Information: 

Humans have been processing information in the world for a long time, finding patterns and learning from our surroundings to solve problems. Today, scientists make sense of complex problems by gathering vast amounts of data, and analysing them with quantitative methods. These methods are important tools to understand the issues facing us: the spread of disease, climate change, or even political movements. But this quantitative toolbox can seem far removed from our individual approaches for processing information in our day-to-day lives. This disconnect and inaccessibility leads to the scientific tools becoming entangled in politics and questions of trust.

In this talk, Anna will describe how some of the ideas at the heart of science’s quantitative tools are familiar to us all. We’ll see how mathematics enables us to turn the ideas into tools. As a society, if we can better connect with the ideas driving this toolbox, we can see when to use (and not to use) the available tools, what’s missing from the toolbox, and how we might come up with new ideas to drive our future understanding of the world around us.

Anna Seigal is a Hooke Research Fellow in the Mathematical Institute at the University of Oxford and a Junior Research Fellow at The Queen's College.

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The Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures are generously supported by XTX Markets.

  • Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures
28 October 2020
17:00

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Is there a secret formula for becoming rich? Or for happiness? Or for becoming popular? Or for self-confidence and good judgement? David Sumpter answer these questions with an emphatic ‘Yes!' All YOU need are The Ten Equations.

In this lecture David will reveal three of these: the confidence equation that helps gamblers know when they have a winning strategy; the influencer equation that shapes our social interactions; and the learning equation that YouTube used to get us addicted to their videos. A small group of mathematicians have used these equations to revolutionise our world. Now you can use them too to better manage your time and make money, have a more balanced approach to your popularity and even to become a nicer person.

To order the book 'The Ten Equations That Rule the World' signed by David Sumpter from Blackwell's Bookshop, email oxford@Blackwells.co.uk by 15 November and they will provide you with all the information you need.

David Sumpter is Professor of Applied Mathematics at the University of Uppsala, Sweden.

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The Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures are generously supported by XTX Markets.

  • Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures
8 October 2020
17:00

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When was the last time you read a grand statement, accompanied by a large number, and wondered whether it could really be true?

Statistics are vital in helping us tell stories – we see them in the papers, on social media, and we hear them used in everyday conversation – and yet we doubt them more than ever. But numbers, in the right hands, have the power to change the world for the better. Contrary to popular belief, good statistics are not a trick, although they are a kind of magic. Good statistics are like a telescope for an astronomer, or a microscope for a bacteriologist. If we are willing to let them, good statistics help us see things about the world around us and about ourselves.

Tim Harford is a senior columnist for the Financial Times, the presenter of Radio 4’s More or Less and is a visiting fellow at Nuffield College, Oxford. His books include The Fifty Things that Made the Modern Economy, Messy, and The Undercover Economist.

To order a personalised copy of Tim's book email oxford@blackwells.co.uk, providing your name and contact phone number/email and the personalisation you would like. You can then pick up from 16/10 or contact Blackwell's on 01865 792792 from that date to pay and have it sent.

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The Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures are generously supported by XTX Markets.

  • Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures
8 September 2020
17:00
Joshua Bull

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Fantasy Football is played by millions of people worldwide, and there are countless strategies that you can choose to try to beat your friends and win the game. But what’s the best way to play? Should you be patient and try to grind out a win, or are you better off taking some risks and going for glory? Should you pick players in brilliant form, or players with a great run of fixtures coming up? And what is this Fantasy Football thing anyway?

As with many of life’s deep questions, maths can help us shed some light on the answers. We’ll explore some classic mathematical problems which help us understand the world of Fantasy Football. We’ll apply some of the modelling techniques that mathematicians use in their research to the problem of finding better Fantasy Football management strategies. And - if we’re lucky - we’ll answer the big question: Can maths tell us how to win at Fantasy Football?

Joshua Bull is a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Mathematical Institute in Oxford and the winner of the 2019-2020 Premier League Fantasy Football competition (from nearly 8 million entrants).

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The Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures are generously supported by XTX Markets.

 

  • Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures
27 May 2020
17:00
Philip Maini

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Mathematical modelling lives a varied life. It links the grey squirrel invasion in the UK to the analysis of how tumour cells invade the body; Alan Turing's model for pattern formation gives insight into animal coat markings and Premier League Football Shirts; and models for Excitability have been used to model the life cycle of the cellular slime mold and heart attacks.

Philip Maini will reveal all in our latest Oxford Mathematics Public Lecture.

Philip Maini is Professor of Mathematical Biology in the University of Oxford.

Watch live:
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The Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures are generously supported by XTX Markets.

  • Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures
13 May 2020
17:00
Renaud Lambiotte

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For several weeks news media has been full of how contact tracing Smartphone apps could help fight COVID-19. However, mobile phones can do more than just trace - they are vital tools in the measurement, prediction and control of the virus.

Looking at recent epidemics as well as COVID-19, Renaud will discuss the different types of data that researchers have been collecting, demonstrating their pros and cons as well as taking a wider view of where mobile data can help us understand the impact of lockdowns on social behaviour and improve our ways of calibrating and updating our epidemiological models. And he will discuss the issue that underpins all this and which is vital for widespread take-up from the Public: privacy and data protection.

Renaud Lambiotte is Associate Professor of Networks and Nonlinear Systems in Oxford.

Watch live:
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The Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures are generously supported by XTX Markets.

  • Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures
8 April 2020
17:00
Robin Thompson

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Models. They are dominating our Lockdown lives. But what is a mathematical model? We hear a lot about the end result, but how is it put together? What are the assumptions? And how accurate can they be?

In our first online only lecture Robin Thompson, Research Fellow in Mathematical Epidemiology in Oxford, will explain. Robin is working on the ongoing modelling of Covid-19 and has made many and varied media appearances in the past few weeks. We are happy to take questions after the lecture.

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Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures are generously supported by XTX Markets

  • Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures
11 March 2020
17:30
Alan Champneys

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There is a beautiful mathematical theory of how independent agents tend to synchronise their behaviour when weakly coupled. Examples include how audiences spontaneously rhythmically applause and how nearby pendulum clocks tend to move in sync. Another famous example is that of the London Millennium Bridge. On the day it opened, the bridge underwent unwanted lateral vibrations that are widely believed to be due to pedestrians synchronising their footsteps.

In this talk Alan will explain how this theory is in fact naive and there is a simpler mathematical theory that is more consistent with the facts and which explains how other bridges have behaved including Bristol's Clifton Suspension Bridge. He will also reflect on the nature of mathematical modelling and the interplay between mathematics, engineering and the real world. 

Alan Champneys is a Professor of Applied Non-linear Mathematics at the University of Bristol. 

Please email external-relations@maths.ox.ac.uk to register.

Watch live:
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The Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures are generously supported by XTX Markets.

  • Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures
13 February 2020
17:00
Ian Griffiths

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How do you make a star-shaped Cheerio? How do they make the glass on your smartphone screen so flat? And how can you make a vacuum filter that removes the most dust before it blocks? All of these are very different challenges that fall under the umbrella of industrial mathematics. While each of these questions might seem very different, they all have a common theme: we know the final properties of the product we want to make and need to come up with a way of manufacturing this. In this talk we show how we can use mathematics to start with the final desired product and trace the fluid dynamics problem ‘back in time’ to enable us to manufacture products that would otherwise be impossible to produce.

Ian Griffiths is a Professor of Industrial Mathematics and a Royal Society University Research Fellow in the Mathematical Institute at the University of Oxford. 

Please email external-relations@maths.ox.ac.uk to register.

Watch live:
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https://livestream.com/oxuni/Griffiths

The Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures are generously supported by XTX Markets.

 

 

 

  • Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures
30 January 2020
17:00
Henry Segerman

Further Information: 

This lecture is about mathematical visualization: how to make accurate, effective, and beautiful pictures, models, and experiences of mathematical concepts. What is it that makes a visualization compelling? 

Henry will show examples in the medium of 3D printing, as well as his work in virtual reality and spherical video. He will also discuss his experiences in teaching a project-based class on 3D printing for mathematics students.

Henry Segerman is an Associate Professor in the Department of Mathematics at Oklahoma State University.

Please email external-relations@maths.ox.ac.uk to register.

Watch live:
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https://livestream.com/oxuni/Segerman

The Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures are generously supported by XTX Markets.

  • Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures

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