Scientific Committee Meeting Minutes for April 2015

Minutes of the meeting of Wednesday 1 April 2015
Room EL.09, Centre for Mathematical Sciences (CMS), University of Cambridge 6:15pm

  1. Welcome, confirmation of membership

    David Jordan (Sheffield) until 31 May 2017.
    Chair acting as Secretary.
    LMS representatives:
    Sarah Rees (Newcastle) until 31 May 2016, John Hunton (Durham) until 31 May 2017, Phil Rippon (Open) until 31 May 2017. EdMS representatives:
    Stuart White (Glasgow) until 31 May 2016,
    Sophie Huczynska (St Andrews) until 31 May 2017.
    Cambridge (2015):
    Rachel Camina, Tom Fisher.
    Bristol (2016):
    Tim Dokchitser, Lynne Walling.
    Durham (2017):
    Andrew Lobb, Alexander Stasinski.
    St Andrews (2018):
    to be nominated (see minute 7 below).
    Representative of the 2015 BMC:
    Dr Brita Nucinkis (Royal Holloway), elected at AGM, until 30 September 2015.
    Ex officio:
    Elizabeth Fisher. per Fiona Nixon (Executive Secretary of the LMS).
    In attendance:
    Tim Browning (Bristol), representing the Bristol organisers, and Kenneth Falconer (St Andrews).

  2. Apologies for absence

    Tim Dokchitser, Elizabeth Fisher, Andrew Lobb, Sarah Rees, Alexander Stasinski, Lynne Walling, Stuart White.

  3. Minutes of Scientific Committee meeting at De Morgan House on 24th September 2014

    The minutes were confirmed with no matters arising.

  4. Immediate impressions of the Cambridge BMC/BAMC

    It was generally agreed that the joint meeting had been very successful. On a more detailed level, it was reported that a list of email addresses of delegates would be made available to appropriate users but that delegates would be given the chance to unsubscribe. The almost blank pages in the brochure were commended. The local organisers advised their successors to start work on the brochure earlier than they had. The various venues for sessions had been successful and accommodation had worked out well. There had been some problems with the live streaming of lectures to alternative venues.

  5. Update on Plans for BMC in Bristol, 21-24 March 2016

    The organisers Lynne Walling and Tim Dokschitser, who were unable to attend and were represented by Tim Browning, submitted the report below by email.

    As previously reported, the dates are 21-24 March, 2016, at the University of Bristol.
    We were awarded the LMS funding (12,500). We are about to apply for CMI Enhancement funding (although I don't think we can call it funding, I think we have to call it a partnership), and we are in the process of planning our proposal to request funding from the Heilbronn Institute (we have informal agreement for some funding from them, the amount yet to be agreed, including a wine reception after the 1st public talk by Kristen Lauter).
    We have tentative room reservations that the uni won't let us make definite until they've done course scheduling (even though the BMC will be outside of course time!). We should have definite confirmation on these some time in April or May. We have requested 4 lecture theatres in the Chemistry bldg (one holding 100, two holding 196, with the room for the plenary lectures holding 339) as well as 2 lecture rooms in a relatively close bldg (Merchant Venture Bldg), each holding about 90. We have requested the reception area (ground floor and level -1) in the Merchant Venture Bldg for coffee, lunch, and displays. We have requested the Great Hall of the Wills Bldg for the public talks (this room is quite large, gothic, and gorgeous  very dramatic).
    All our public and plenary speakers have accepted:
    Public speakers: Kristin Lauter (Microsoft, President of Assoc. for Women in Math.) Hendrik Lenstra (U Leiden)
    Plenary Speakers: Alex Lubotzky (Hebrew U, Jerusalem; Algebra) Luigi Ambrosio (Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa; Analysis) Robert Adler (Technion, Haifa; Probability) Amie Wilkinson (U Chicago; Ergodic theory) Maria Chudnovsky (U Columbia, New York; Combinatorics) Peter Sarnak (Princeton U; Number Theory)
    Session organisers are currently proposing morning speakers, and beginning to think about other speakers. We will begin inviting morning speakers in April.
    We have 6 special sessions planned, 2 afternoons each with a total of 8 speakers in each. We plan a mix of speakers at various stages of their careers, from around the UK as well as the EU and some from even further away. Topics (and organisers): Algebra (Tim Burness and Jeremy Rickard), Analysis (John Mackay and Michiel van den Berg), Combinatorics (Thomas Bloom and Julia Wolf), Ergodic Theory (Thomas Jordan and Corinna Ulcigrai), Number Theory (Andy Booker and Tim Browning), Probability (Marton Balasz and Balint Toth). Proposed schedule for these: Tues, Weds afternoons: 2:00-2:40 2:50-3:10 3:20-4:00 4:10-4:30 (then coffee and then a plenary talk at 5:00)
    Tim Dokchitser has made a (nub of a) website, and info will be added to it as it becomes available. matyd/BMC/ We will include a list of hotels with links to their websites, as well as email and phone contact info. We will include a list of local pubs and restaurants with links, as well as maps.
    Also in April I will be going over the finances to assess our costs, our funding, and then determine what the registration fee should be. I will also work with our admin team to determine a venue (and cost) for the conference dinner. The registration fee will include lunches for Tuesday and Wednesday, but dinner will be a separate charge.
    Our admin team will set up a web tool for people to pay for registration and for the conference dinner (we have used this before for several largish conferences here, and it has worked quite easily, without aggravation to users).
    The Committee welcomed this helpful and detailed report. An email from Sarah Rees, who was unable to attend, commended Bristol on the number of female speakers in their programme and encouraged Durham to follow suit.

  6. Plans for BMC in Durham in the week 3-7 April 2017

    The dates will be 3-6 April 2017. The organisers Andrew Lobb and Alexander Stasinski, who were unable to attend and were represented by John Hunton, submitted the report below, from which names of potential plenary speakers have been removed, by email.

    We have reserved all the university accommodation that is available for the period of the BMC (just over 200 college rooms). If there is overflow then there is an arrangement with local hotels. We have also reserved a number of the big+medium rooms on the campus for the plenary+morning talks and the workshops. We have all the major costings.
    We have secured two plenary speakers. Another, of high profile and seemingly keen, is unable to confirm so far in advance but, is being given more time to decide. We have a couple more irons in the fire at the moment.
    We have not got as far as deciding precisely on the workshop areas, nor have we yet applied for LMS funding. We shall do both by mid-April (I think that puts us on schedule with the other recent BMCs). We shall be in touch with the other BMC organizers for copies of their applications for LMS funding within the next few weeks -- just a heads-up! At the same time as being in touch with the LMS we shall contact Heilbronn and Clay to see what they might want to do for us.

    The Committee were content that the plans and progress were appropriate at this stage.

  7. Early plans for BMC in St Andrews June 2018

    Following acceptance by the AGM of the invitation to St Andrews in 2018, it was reported that Colva Roney-Dougal and Mike Todd would represent St Andrews on the Committee. Neither was present in Cambridge and they were represented by Sophie Huczynska and Kenneth Falconer. The main point for discussion was the timing. The traditional Easter timing would be difficult due to dates of terms and June was proposed and agreed by the Committee.

  8. Future BMCs

    The Chair reported that the University of Lancaster had offered to host the BMC in 2019. It was agreed unanimously to accept this offer. The Chair would inform Lancaster of this decision.

  9. Other meetings

    It was noted that the YRM (Young Researchers in Mathematics) 2015 meeting would be held at the University of Oxford from 17-20 August 2015. Postgraduates attending both BMC/BAMC and YRM would have their YRM registration fee waived. The BCTCS (British Colloquium in Theoretical Computer Science) 2015 meeting will be held at Middlesex University from 14-18 September 2015.

  10. Any other business

    There were reports that the LMS Programme Committee had been discussing the possibility of a formal arrangement between the BMC Workshops and LMS Scheme 3. The Chair was unaware of such discussions but would investigate. The Chair thanked the local organisers Rachel Camina, Tom Fisher and Julius Ross for their contributions to the organisation of both the joint meeting and the BMC component.

  11. Date of next meeting
    (at De Morgan House, September 2015)

    To be agreed over the summer.

David Jordan 7 April 2015