Mathematics is about finding better ways of reasoning. But for many applied mathematicians, the primary mission is to shape their minds in a way that gets them closer to the truth. The calculations are secondary, the real question is: how can we better understand the world around us?
David will take us on a journey through applied mathematics from statistics all the way to complexity theory, lifting examples from his work with football clubs — signing the best players (statistical thinking) or organising an attack (complex thinking) - and from every day life — bickering less with our partners (interactive thinking) and learning to let go (chaotic thinking). David reimagines applied mathematics as a set of tools for life, from big work decisions to how we treat our friends, family and work colleagues. No problem is too big or too small for a mathematical solution.
Professor David Sumpter is author of five books including Soccermatics (2016), Outnumbered (2018) and Four Ways of Thinking (2023). His research covers everything from the inner workings of fish schools and ant colonies, through social psychology and segregation in society, to machine learning and artificial intelligence. He has consulted for leading football clubs and national teams and has written for The Economist 1843, The Telegraph, The Guardian, Prospect and FourFourTwo magazine.
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The lecture will be broadcast on our YouTube Channel exactly three weeks later, 5pm, 4th October and any time after.
The Oxford Mathematics Public Lectures are generously supported by XTX Markets.