A VERY SPECIAL DAY AT UNESCO
The study of meteorological, environmental or biological phenomena for developing countries necessitates more and more sophisticated mathematical tools. The training of engineers and scientific staff able to conduct these studies and to implement solutions requires to elaborate education and train teachers in mathematics at the highest level. In addition, the promotion of mathematical research is essential to nurture the innovation we need to implement the industry and infrastructure yielding fair and sustainable development. This very special event aims at raising awareness about the importance of mathematics regarding development issues.
This day is proposed by the Centre International de Mathématiques Pures et Appliquées (CIMPA), the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) and the French National Commission for UNESCO (CNFU), under the sponsorship of the French Academy of Sciences and an Honorary Committee.
Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, India
A former Professor at Aga Khan University, Angelina BIJURA is presently the Director of Inspire Secondary School in Tanzania and the Secretary of East African Mathematics Education Research Network. Current member countries are Tanzania, Rwanda, Kenya and Uganda. She greatly contributes to improving the way mathematics are taught and learnt. She also conducts research in mathematics education.
Inspire Secondary School, Tanzania
TALK & ROUND TABLE 1
An emeritus Professor of Mathematics at the Institut des Hautes Études Scientifiques (IHES), Jean-Pierre BOURGUIGNON is specialized in differential geometry, particularly in its interactions with partial differential equations and mathematical physics. Throughout his career, he has held positions at CNRS, École Polytechnique, IHES and served on many boards and committees. He has been President of the European Research Council since 2014.
Institut des Hautes Études Scientifiques, France, European Research Council
ROUND TABLE 1
Barry Green is the Director of the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) in South Africa and the Chief Academic and Research Officer for the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences Global Network. A Professor at Stellenbosch University, he is specialized in algebra and number theory. He has collaborated with experts in this field in Germany, France, the USA and Japan. He is passionate about promoting the growth of mathematical sciences in the developing world, particularly in Africa, and is the current President of CIMPA.
Stellenbosch University, South Africa, AIMS, CIMPA
ROUND TABLE 1
Former President of CIMPA and former holder of the UNESCO Chair in mathematics and development, Mohamed JAOUA currently runs Esprit School of Business, which he founded to offer trainings combining management and digital technologies. He thereby contributes to structuring Tunisian scientific landscape through the creation of several research and academic scientific institutions.
Esprit School of Business, Tunisia
ROUND TABLE 2
A member of the French Academy of Sciences and a Research Director emerita at CNRS, Odile MACCHI first studied fundamental mathematics before moving on to statistical physics and then, in 1972, to applied mathematics, notably to information theory and signal theory. She conciliated theoretical concepts and societal applications, in particular in the domain of telecommunication systems, which are nowadays a key issue for development. Odile MACCHI currently promotes a better science education in African schools, through methods developed by the Foundation La main à la pâte.
CNRS, French Academy of Sciences, Foundation La main à la pâte, France
ROUND TABLE 2
An Associate Professor at the Institute of Mathematics of the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology, PHAN Thi Ha Duong is a specialist of combinatorics and algorithmics. From 1999 to 2005, PHAN Thi Ha Duong was a lecturer in France at Université Paris Diderot; she then went back to Vietnam. She has greatly contributed to creating and strengthening the scientific collaboration between the Institute of Mathematics and several French universities.
PHAN Thị Hà Dương
Institute of Mathematics of the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology
ROUND TABLE 1
A Professor in mathematics at Mohammed V University of Rabat, Nadia RAÏSSI is specialized in optimization and control theory. Her work also focuses on the applications of these domains to the bio economy and natural resource management modelling. In particular, those helped answer a series of questions raised by the Moroccan Ministry of Fisheries.
Université Mohammed V de Rabat, Morocco
TALK & ROUND TABLE 2
Annie Raoult is CIMPA’s Vice-President; she is also a Professor emerita in mathematics at Université Paris Descartes. She used to run the university’s applied mathematics laboratory, called “MAP5”. Both through the impetus she gave and in her own research work, she promoted the interactions with researchers from other fields.
Université Paris Descartes, CIMPA, France
ROUND TABLE 2
A Professor at the Cheikh Anta Diop University of Dakar, Diaraf SECK is a specialist in geometric and topological analysis of shapes and mathematical modelling. He is particularly interested in their applications to the environment. He is currently leading a research program funded by the Simons Foundation on nonlinear analysis, geometry and applications; this program brings together researchers from a dozen different universities in West and Central Africa.
Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Senegal
TALK & ROUND TABLE 2
A Professor in mathematics and Director of the Instituto de Matemática Pura e Aplicada, Marcelo VIANA is specialized in dynamical systems. His work was acknowledged by numerous awards including an invitation to give a plenary talk at the International Congress of Mathematicians in 1998. Marcelo VIANA also plays a leading part in the outreach of mathematics in Brazil.
Instituto de Matemática Pura e Aplicada, Brazil
TALK & ROUND TABLE 1
A Fields Medallist in 2010, former member of CIMPA’s scientific council and MP for Essonne since 2017, Cédric VILLANI devotes an unflagging energy to disseminate scientific activity in France and abroad. Through many a trip to Africa, he is deeply committed in the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) project and in a next of kin initiative, the Next Einstein Forum.
Université de Lyon, France
A Professor of Medicine at Université Paris Diderot and Head of Infectious Disease Department at Bichat - Claude Bernard Hospital (Paris), Yazdan YAZDANPANAH is specialized in the study of the clinical epidemiology of HIV and viral hepatitis, and in the pharmaco-economics of antimicrobial agents. He is currently the Director of the French Inserm and Aviesan Institute of Immunology, Inflammation, Infectiology, and Microbiology.
Université Paris Diderot et Hôpital Bichat - Claude Bernard, France
ROUND TABLE 2
The event will be animated by Luc ALLEMAND, a journalist and science communicator, founder of Afriscitech, online media dedicated to the scientific production of the African continent.
from 9:30 to 12:30 AM
from 2:00 to 5:30 PM
by Audrey AZOULAY (Director-General of UNESCO),
Ludovic RIFFORD (Director of CIMPA),
Laurent STEFANINI (Ambassador, Deputy Permanent Delegate of France to UNESCO),
Pascal AUSCHER (Director of INSMI-CNRS),
Sonia BAHRI (Advisor for Science and Sustainable Development, French National Commission to UNESCO),
Patrick MONFRAY (Deputy Director of the Research and Innovation Strategy Service, French Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation),
Étienne GHYS (Permanent Secretary of the French Academy of Sciences).
10:15 - 10:20
VIDEO ADDRESS BY INGRID DAUBECHIES,
Meaningful Teaching and Learning of Mathematics for Sustainable Development
One of the UNO Sustainable Development Goals for 2030 is commitment “to ending poverty in all its forms and dimensions, including by eradicating extreme poverty by 2030. All people must enjoy a basic standard of living, including through social protection systems”.
For this to happen, young people should be prepared to be not only productive, but also active members of their communities. To be men and women who are creative, innovative and quick thinkers who constantly reflect on their actions with the intentions of improving their lives, thus building communities of critical thinkers. When school mathematics is taught and learnt in a meaningful way, critical thinking is acquired. This talk is about meaningful teaching and learning of mathematics. About the positive interaction between teachers, learners and the mathematical content. The kind of teaching that puts emphasis on relational understanding; procedural and conceptual understanding. Challenges that are currently facing developing countries like Tanzania to deliver meaningful school mathematics will be outlined and discussed.
Starting from little, Brazil built up within seven decades a world-renowned school of mathematics. After entering Group One of the International Mathematical Union in 1954, the country has just been promoted to Group Five, which gathers the eleven top nations in this scientific domain. A symbol of this development, Carioca Artur Avila, researcher and alumnus of the IMPA (Instituto de Matemática Pura e Aplicada, Rio de Janeiro), became the first Fields medalist to have done his entire course of study in a developing country.
How was it possible? One can point out two main factors. On the one hand, a decisive and intelligent leadership who knew how to take advantage of the country’s desire for scientific development at the end of World War II, when Brazil started its accelerated industrialization. On the other hand, the wide international opening of the Brazilian mathematicians’ community at the international level (France playing a major part) as well as in the regional framework of Latin America.
ROUND TABLE 1
The Importance of Mathematics in Education and Higher Education in Developing Countries
LUNCH AT YOUR CONVENIENCE
Mathematics for Billions: Relevance of Mathematical Sciences to Planet Earth
Mathematics is a singular achievement of the human mind, that constructs precise logical relations between abstract concepts. The usefulness, and uselessness, of mathematics in aiding us understand the world around us has been a puzzle that many have pondered over. In this talk, we will discuss how development of new mathematical ideas in recent years has been and continues to be essential to study the climate of the Earth, especially in unravelling the secrets hidden in the huge and complex observational datasets. We will also illustrate how mathematical research is guided not only by considerations of beauty and simplicity but also by notions of relevance and utility.
Mathematical Modelling, a Decision Tool for the Management of Fishery Resources
The economic situation of Morocco and the launching of development policies restructuration programs have increased the already high pressure on natural resources. With a 3500 km long sea coast, a more than 1.5 million tonnes fishery production in 2017, a 3% share of GDP and 6% of labour force, the fishing industry plays a prominent role in the national Moroccan economy.
Through mathematical modelling, one describes the complex mechanisms of this activity. Models analysis enables to rationalize and improve the decision-making for a sustainable and responsible management of the sector, by taking into account its environmental and economic issues.
This approach is based on sophisticated mathematical tools and may be adapted to other applications, particularly to the modelling of environment management. Given the current ecological transition, in which Morocco stands as a leader among African countries, this is indeed a topical issue.
2:50 - 3:00
VIDEO PROJECTION OF AN ARTISTIC PERFORMANCE
This talk is intended for the widest possible audience. Therefore, we will not display mathematical results as one usually does in mathematical conferences. We will rather try to highlight the contribution of mathematics to helping us understand problems with concrete impact on human lives, such as erosion and dynamics problems of sand dunes in a desert, traffic problems in urban areas, pollution problems, etc. To support our argument, we will focus on a couple of examples. We will talk about the dynamics of underwater sand dunes that are close to the seashore and are affected by tidal movements. Without sand transport or sea level rise, coastal erosion phenomena stay more or less reasonable. One could then hope for better projections of coastal lines’ evolution in the long, medium and short run. Different mathematical models are proposed for long, medium and short-term evolutions. These mathematical models derive from morphodynamics (Exner equation) and hydrodynamics equations (shallow water equations and Navier-Stokes equations). By analogy, one can perfectly propose mathematical models to study the dynamics of sand dunes in deserts.
ROUND TABLE 2
The Importance of Mathematics as a Tool to Meet Development Issues
by Antoine PETIT (President and Chief Executive Officer of CNRS)
and Thierry COULHON (Advisor for Schooling, Higher Education, Research and Innovation to the President of the French Republic).
Mrs Fatima M. ABOUD
Professor at the Faculty of Sciences - University of Diyala (Iraq)
Mr. Guillermo CORTINAS
President of the Unión Matemática de América Latina y el
Caribe, Professor at the Universidad de Buenos Aires and Researcher at CONICET (Argentina)
Mr. Pavel EXNER
Former President of the European Mathematical Society,
Professor at the Czech Technical University in Prague
Mr. Mohamed JAOUA
Managing Director of Esprit School of Business, former President of CIMPA, former holder of the UNESCO Chair "Mathematics and Development" (Tunisia)
Mr. Bao Chau NGO
2010 Fields Medal, Scientific Director of the Vietnam Institute for Advanced Study in Mathematics, Professor at the University of Chicago (United States)
Mr. Vincent RIVASSEAU
President of the Association for the Promotion of Sciences in Africa, Professor at the Université Paris-Sud (France)
Mr. Pierre AUGER
Member of the French Academy of Sciences, President of the Committee for Developing Countries, Research Director at the Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (France)
Mrs Alicia DICKENSTEIN
Former Vice-President of the International Mathematical Union, Professor at the Universidad de Buenos Aires (Argentina)
Mr. Barry GREEN
President of CIMPA, Director of the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences in South Africa, AIMS Next Einstein Initiative Chief Academic and Research Officer, Professor at Stellenbosch University (South Africa)
Mr. Gilles LEBEAU
Member of the Freench Academy of Sciences,
former Director of the Groupement Euro-Maghrébin de Mathématiques et leurs Interactions, Professor at the Université Nice Sophia-Antipolis (France)
Mr. Wandera OGANA
President of the Committee for Developing Countries of the International Mathematical Union, Professor at the University of Nairobi (Kenya)
Mrs Marie-Françoise ROY
Chair of the Committee for Women in Mathematics of the International Mathematical Union, Professor emerita at the Université de Rennes (France)
Mrs Claire VOISIN
Member of the French Academy of Sciences, Professor at Collège de France
Mr. Jose Maria BALMACEDA
President of the Southeast Asian Mathematical Society,
Professor at the University of Philippines
Mrs Nouzha EL YACOUBI
President of the African Mathematical Union,
Professor at the Université Mohammed V of Rabat (Morocco)
Mr. Norbert HOUNKONNOU
UNESCO Chair in Mathematical Physics and Applications, Professor at the Université d’Abomey-Calavi, President of the Académie nationale des sciences, arts et lettres (Benin)
Mrs Odile MACCHI
Member of the French Academy of Sciences,
Research Director emerita at the CNRS,
Vice-President of the Foundation La main à la pâte
Mr. Hoang Hiep PHAM
Director of the International Centre for Research and Postgraduate Training in Mathematics (Category 2 centre under the auspices of UNESCO), Professor at the Institute of Mathematics of the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology
Mrs Sheung Tsun TSOU
Professor emerita at Oxford University (United Kingdom), former President of CIMPA
AN EXCEPTIONAL PLACE:
THE UNESCO HOUSE
Located near the Eiffel Tower, Place de Fontenoy in Paris, the UNESCO House houses conference rooms and exhibition spaces. There is also a bookshop and many remarkable works of art by Picasso, Bazaine, Miro, Tapiés, Le Corbusier ... Concerts, shows, ceremonies, screenings, exhibitions and conferences are hosted every month, free and open to all.
The Centre International de Mathématiques Pures et Appliquées (CIMPA), founded in France in 1978, is a non-profit organisation that promotes research in mathematics in developing countries. Located in Nice, it is a UNESCO Category 2 centre and is part of the Laboratoire d’Excellence CARMIN (Centres d’accueil et de rencontres mathématiques internationales). It benefits from the financial support of France, Norway, Spain and Switzerland.
The French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) is an interdisciplinary public research organisation under the administrative supervision of the French Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation. The National Institute for Mathematical Sciences and their Interactions (INSMI) of the CNRS is endowed with the national mission of developing and coordinating research in all different domains of mathematics. It helps structure and support research on a national scale, develop collaborations with the international scientific network and foster interface with other scientific disciplines as well as interactions with companies and society. The Insmi also supports activities of dissemination towards the younger ones and the general public, with a particular concern for the commitment of young women in mathematics.
COMMISSION NATIONALE FRANCAISE pour l’UNESCO
The French National Commission for UNESCO was established by a decree of 2 August 1946, pursuant to Article 7 of UNESCO's Constitution, which provides the establishment of National Commissions in each of the Member States. The French Commission was the first to be set up, France became the host country of UNESCO's headquarters. The commission was fully reformed in 2014. As the interface between France and UNESCO, the French National Commission for UNESCO has a dual mission: to contribute to the strengthening of French intellectual and programmatic influence at UNESCO; and to promote UNESCO's role and values in French society.