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December 2017 - Barcelona Graduate School of Mathematics newsletter



Welcome to the first issue of our new e-newsletter Penta, the brand-new Barcelona Graduate School of Maths newsletter. We want to bring you the latest news about the BGSMath, introduce you the people who work here, inform you of our latest initiatives, let you know about open doctoral and post-doctoral calls, and much more. We hope you enjoy it, and that you will let us know what you think about how we can improve and enrich it. A special thanks to Matt Hennessy & Umair Irfan for their English revision.

Your editor,
Luca Tancredi Barone


Meet the new BGSMath INPhINIT grantee

“Engineers will soon be fully involved in medical research”

Waleed Mirza, a new PhD student in the Computational Methods and Numerical Analysis Lab at the UPC, joined BGSMath thanks to the newly established INPhINIT grant promoted by the “La Caixa” Foundation. A mechanical engineer by training, Waleed is convinced that “The best thing humans can do is to improve the medical industry.”

Waleed Mirza
Read the interview


BMS - BGSMath Junior Meeting

BMS - BGSMath Junior Meeting

Fruitful young mathematicians’ gathering in Barcelona

On 9 and 10 October, more than 60 young mathematicians from Barcelona and Berlin (some of them pictured above) gathered at the Institut d'Estudis Catalans in Barcelona to discuss their cutting-edge work in their respective fields of mathematics. The conference, completely organised by young scientists, covered topics such as algebra and geometry, discrete mathematics and computer science, probability, statistics and partial differential equations. A session on RRI tools was also offered to attendants.

Pictures Full Programme

Soft skills seminars

How to give an optimal presentation?

On 28 September, BGSMath Director Marc Noy gave a talk aimed at PhD students and Postdocs with some valuable tips on the best practices for presentations. The most important ones? Choose just one topic, prepare your sildes well, don't overdo it with text, and give the audience a message to take back home. Afterwards, Postodoctoral Fellow Gonzalo Fiz and PhD student Federica Gatti (pictured) reharsed applying Noy's advice. BGSMath regularly holds soft skills seminars to help young researchers to develop skills that could help them land a future career.


Marcel Guardia

An ERC grant to study planetary instabilities

UPC Associate Professor and BGSMath Faculty member Marcel Guardia, 35, earlier this year received an ERC Starting Grant, the only mathematics recipient in Spain. His ERC project is focussed on “Instabilities and homoclinic phenomena in Hamiltonian systems.” Guardia showed that in celestial mechanics, three bodies have oscillatory movements in most cases, a phenomenon described as “comet-like behaviour.” In the picture, comet Ison (Hubble Space Telescope).

Read the interview

Marta Sanz-Solé

The RSME medal goes to former President of the EMS

On 5 October, the Spanish Royal Mathematics Society (RSME) awarded UB Professor and BGSMath faculty member Marta Sanz-Solé its prestigious medal in recognition of “her relevant, exceptional and continuous contributions in any field of mathematics.” “This award encourages me to continue in my efforts to support science in all of its aspects, including mathematical research, youth training, and the participation in international organisations that help citizens advance towards a wiser, thus more critical, open, tolerant and just society,” said Sanz-Solé, who served as President of the European Mathematical Society between 2011 and 2014.

Read the article


Statistics for political demonstrations

Llorenç Badiella, head of the UAB Applied Statistics Facility

At BGSMath, we like to attach numbers to things. No one is better at it here than Llorenç Badiella. His team’s job is to provide methodological support to researchers, pharmaceutical labs, hospitals, banks, NGOs and public entities. “With statistics you may lie. But without statistics, lies are bigger,” he says.

Read the interview


More distinctions in 2017 for BGSMath members

In Januray, UPC professors Eva Miranda and Irene Arias received both a prestigious ICREA Academia grant. At the beginning of the year, Miranda was also bestowed a Chaire d’Excellence of the Paris Mathematical Science Foundation (FSMP).

Barcelona Dynamical Systems Prize 2017

In June, UB professor Àlex Haro was one of the co-recipients of the Dynamical Systems Prize 2017, awarded by the Catalan Mathematical Society (SCM) for their ground-breaking article on Computer-Assisted Application of KAM Theory. The prize comes with a 4,000-euro reward.

CALL / Santander 2018

On 15 December, we opened a call for two “Banco de Santander – María de Maetzu” postdoctoral positions, one position to work on Dynamical Systems, and one position to work on Probability, Statistics and/or Computer Science. The fellowships will be generously funded by Banco Santander. Deadline: 31/1/2018.


Exceptional early-stage researchers from all over the world seeking a PhD grant within the "La Caixa" - INPhiNIT programme can apply. BGSMath offers ten possible projects to prospecting students. All the details on our web. If you want to apply, please find your project here. Deadline: 1/2/2018.
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With the support of: Excelencia María de Maetzu