Marina Ratner passes away

Another great female mathematician, Marina Ratner, passed away  on July 7th, 2017. Marina played in a key role in linking up the Russian and western schools of dynamical systems and later became famous for her beautiful theorems on unipotent flows on homogeneous spaces, and their application to questions in number theory, see for example

The following is taken from the UC Berkeley website:

Marina Ratner   Professor Emeritus passed away on July 7, 2017, at her home in El Cerrito, California.  Professor Ratner was educated in Moscow, obtained her doctoral degree at the Moscow State University, emigrated to Israel in 1971, and joined the Berkeley Mathematics Department in 1975. Her work was mainly in ergodic theory and its connections with other parts of mathematics, and earned many honors, including the Ostrowski prize and the John J. Carty Award. She was a plenary speaker at the International Congress of Mathematicians and a member of the National Academy of Sciences. She was also an outstanding and beloved teacher and cared deeply about mathematics education.


She is survived by her daughter Anna Ratner, son-in-law Charles Cox, grandchildren Bryan and Maya, and nephews Michael Bialy (a Professor of Mathematics at Tel Aviv University) and Alex Bialy.

Maryam Mirzakhani passes away

We are very deeply saddened by the news that Maryam Mirzakhani, the first woman to win the Fields medal,  passed away today, Saturday July 15th 2017, at the age of 40.

A brilliant mathematician, she has been an inspiration to so many. She will be sorely missed. Our condolences to her family and friends.

Her beautiful mathematics will stand as a memorial long after those of us who have had the privilege of knowing her personally are gone.

Various links with tributes and information on her life and career can be found on the EWM website here.

For a page of tributes set up by the AMS see here.

Here is an interview with Maryam in the Guardian  from August 2014, together with some more links and here is an obituary by Martin Bridson,  July 2017.

A very nice and informative interview by Erica Klarreich which appeared in Quanta magazine in 2014 is here.

Call for Mittag Leffler summer school

EWM and the EMS Women in Mathematics Committee are pleased to invite proposals for a one week summer school at the Institut Mittag Leffler in Stockholm in summer 2018.

There are places for up to 28 participants. The Institut will cover lodging and a meal allowance for everyone, and there is some travel money available. The school should be on a
focussed topic of current importance and open to PhD students and post-docs of both sexes.

A special feature of the summer school is that there will be a much larger than usual involvement by women. We expect that most or all of the members of the organising committee, at least half the participants, and if possible the lecturers, should be female.

The exact dates will have to be negotiated with the Institut. The EMS is supportive of this project and it is expected that some funding for travel will be available. Help and advice will be available
from the Oversight Committee.

Proposals, which should be framed according to the guidelines (see attached), should be sent electronically as a pdf file to with a copy
to by 30 July 2017. They will be selected on the basis of their scientific merit and the extent to which they fulfill the aims of the guidelines2018.

Ulrike Tillmann
Chair of the Oversight Committee

Congratulations to Claire Voisin

Many congratulations to Claire Voisin who jointly with Janos Kollar has won the 2017 Shaw prize in Mathematics for their remarkable results in many central areas of algebraic geometry, which have transformed the field and led to the solution of long-standing problems that had appeared out of reach.

The Shaw Prize consists of three annual prizes: Astronomy, Life Science and Medicine, and Mathematical Sciences, each bearing a monetary award of US$1.2 million. This will be the fourteenth year that the Prize has been awarded and the presentation ceremony is scheduled for Tuesday, 26 September 2017.

EWM General Meeting 2018

The next EWM General Meeting will take place in Graz, Austria, September 3-7, 2018.

There will be three lectures by the  EMS lecturer Gigliola Staffilani (MIT). Other confirmed plenary speakers: Shiri Artstein-Avidan (Israel), Ilse Fischer (Austria), Alice Guionnet (France), Frances Kirwan (UK), Maryna Viazovska (Switzerland and Ukraine).

There will also be several special sessions. Proposals for such sessions with title, abstract, and list of speakers are welcome and should be submitted by 31 August 2017 to . Please note that EWM cannot financially support the speakers in such sessions, except for situations in which the speakers might qualify for a travel/accommodation grant – see below.  If anyone would like to contribute grant money to financing special sessions within this general meeting, please contact us at .

Registration will open in September 2017, with the possibility of expressing the interest in giving a talk or presenting a poster.

As usual, EWM will offer a limited number of travel and/or accommodation grants for female mathematicians from developing countries. Requests for support may be made when registering for the meeting.

Organizing committee:  Karin Baur, Kathryn Hess, Elena Resmerita, Carola-Bibiane Schönlieb

Gender Gap Project update

The 300,000 euro Gender Gap Project announced in January 2017 is underway!

A significant gender gap in science persists at all levels. The project will produce sound data, including trends (since the situation for women continues to change around the world.  It will provide evidence for informed decisions and will provide easy access to materials proven to be useful in encouraging girls and young women to study and work in these fields.

In 2017 the activities are the following:

  • Launch Workshop 1 – 3 June 2017  Paris
  • Three Regional Workshops in Africa, Asia and Latin-America
  • Organization of the Global Survey and the Joint Study on Publication Patterns.

For more details see here.