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Centre for the Mathematics of Planet Earth – University of Reading

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Centre for the Mathematics of Planet Earth

In January 2017 the Interdisciplinary Research Centre for the Mathematics of Planet Earth has begun its activities at the Department of Mathematics and Statistics of the University of Reading under the direction of Professor Valerio Lucarini. The scientific board plans and manages the activities of the centre. The members of the board are Jochen Broecker, Tobias Kuna, Valerio Lucarini, Claudia Neves, Jennifer Scott, and Ted Shepherd.

The goal of the centre is to become a catalyser of ideas and initiatives in the broad interdisciplinary area at the intersection between mathematics, theoretical physics, and earth sciences.

The interaction between these disciplines has been for a long time a very stimulating one. Indeed, on the one hand, the phenomenology of the fluid and solid earth and of the Earth ecological systems has provided the basic inspiration leading to the birth of entire research areas in mathematics and theoretical physics, such as those related to chaos, fractals, catastrophe theory, stochastic dynamical systems, extreme events theory, and multi-scale processes. On the other hand, mathematical tools developed in these areas, as well as in fields such as ordinary and partial differential equations, dynamical systems, signal processing, stochastic calculus, statistical mechanics, taken together with the understanding of the underlying physical, chemical, and biological processes, have immensely increased the predictive and descriptive power of earth sciences.

The idea of creating this centre originates from the stimulations coming as a result of the special scientific year of "Mathematics of Planet Earth 2013", an international initiative that has seen several meetings and scientific events organised around the world. In particular, the University of Reading has contributed through the organisations of the scientific programme "Mathematics for the Fluid Earth" hosted at the Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences in October-December 2013. The INI programme had the specific aim of focusing on the interaction of mathematics and other sciences in the understanding of the phenomena that govern the fluid masses of the earth: atmosphere and oceans. Two satellite meetings held in January 2013 and February 2014 have complemented the activities of the INI programme.

This centre will in particular organise international scientific events such as workshops, conferences, and training courses in Reading, elsewhere in UK, and overseas, and will host scientists through a visitor programme.

Its activities are in close connection with the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training Mathematics of Planet Earth, which is run jointly by the Imperial College London and the University of Reading. Professor Dan Crisan and Professor Jennifer Scott are the reference persons for the two institutions, respectively.

Two initiatives organised by the centre will take place during 2017.

a) March 6-10:  Les Houches School of Physics "Diversity of planetary circulation regimes, in our Solar system and beyond"

b) August 29-September 1:  CliMathNet Conference 2017

Please contact Valerio Lucarini for any additional information or if you are interested in participating in our visiting programme.

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