The Maxwell Institute runs a series of distinguished annual lectures
The Atiyah Lecture is an annual lecture to commemorate Sir Michael Atiyah (1929-2019), delivered by a distinguished mathematician who has provided a significant service to the international mathematical community.
The first Atiyah Lecture was given by Professor Jean-Pierre Bourguignon on 11 January 2021.
Professor Bourguignon is a distinguished differential geometer who served as director of the IHES and as president of the French Mathematical Society, of the European Mathematical Society and most recently of the European Research Council.
What is a Spinor?
This was the title of the lecture Sir Michael gave in September 2013 at IHES on the occasion of the farewell conference for my retirement as Director.
This was most appropriate as I learned a lot from him about this subject. It is true that mathematicians struggled for a long time to get acquainted with spinors. It is in sharp contrast with the fact that physicists adopted them without hesitation as soon as Paul-Adrien Maurice Dirac showed they were essential to formulate a quantum equation invariant under the Poincaré group.
Indeed spinors have a number of features that make them both subtle and powerful to deal with mathematical problems. Of great importance are of course the natural differential operators universally defined on spinor fields, namely the Dirac and the Penrose operators.
The purpose of the lecture is to revisit historical steps taken to master these objects, explore their remarkable geometric content and present some mathematical problems on which they shed light.
The Finney Lecture is an annual lecture to commemorate Professor David Finney (1917-2018). The lecture aims to highlight exceptional research in the field of applied statistics.
The 5th David Finney Lecture will be given online by Professor Kerrie Mengersen in March 2021. More details to be announced soon.
Professor Kerrie Mengersen is a Distinguished Professor in Statistics at the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia. She is the Deputy Director of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Mathematical Frontiers and the Director of the QUT Centre for Data Science. Kerrie is also an elected Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science and the Australian Academy of Social Sciences, and a member of the Statistical Society of Australia and the IMS, ASA, RSS, ISBA and ISI. Her research interests are in mathematical statistics and its application to substantive challenges in health, environment and industry, with particular focus on Bayesian methods.
The Fitch Lecture is an annual lecture to commemorate Davey Fitch (1978-2019). It aims to highlight the impact of mathematics.
The first Fitch lecture will be in 2021. More details to be announced soon.
The Whittaker Lecture is an annual lecture to commemorate Sir Edmund Whittaker (1873-1956), delivered by a distinguished mathematician.
The first Whittaker lecture was given by Professor Yuri Tschinkel on 19 November 2020.
Professor Tschinkel graduated from Moscow State University in 1990 and received his PhD in 1992 from the MIT under the supervision of Yuri Manin and Michael Artin. Now he is a professor at the Courant Institute (NYU). Prior NYU, he worked at Harvard, UIC and University of Goettingen. Since 2012, Tschinkel is director of the Simons Foundation’s Department of Mathematics and Physics. Tschinkel does research on arithmetic geometry. He is the author of over 110 research publications. Tschinkel was an Invited Speaker at the ICM 2006 in Madrid. He is a Fellow of the American Mathematical Society, and a member of the German Academy of Sciences Leopoldina.
Rational points, rational curves, and rational varieties.
I will discuss recent results and constructions in the study of rationality of algebraic varieties, and their applications to arithmetic questions.