Women+ and Mathematics 2024 Investigates Symmetry and Arithmetic

From May 19–24, the Institute for Advanced Study welcomed 40 students, educators, and researchers from across the globe for its annual Women+ and Mathematics (W+AM) program. The program featured a diverse array of activities revolving around the central theme of "Symmetry and Arithmetic." Participants engaged in thought-provoking lectures, collaborative problem-solving sessions, research talks delving into cutting-edge topics, and special presentations by esteemed speakers. 

Highlights of W+AM 2024 included the Terng and Uhlenbeck lectures, named for Chuu-Lian Terng, past Member (1979, 1997–98) in the School of Mathematics, and Distinguished Visiting Professor Karen Uhlenbeck. Terng and Uhlenbeck played a key role in establishing the program at the Institute in 1994. This year, each eponymous lecture series took the work of IAS Faculty as a basis.

The Terng lectures, presented by Charlotte Chan of the University of Michigan, focused on examples and applications of Deligne-Lusztig theory. In the 1970s, Pierre Deligne, Professor Emeritus in the School of Mathematics, and George Lusztig, frequent Member in the School, uncovered one of the most important relationships between geometry and representation theory. Chan delivered an example-based tour of these ideas, focusing on how to extract concrete information from theory.

Meanwhile, Ana Caraiani, Veblen Research Instructor (2013–16) in the School of Mathematics, returned to IAS to deliver the Uhlenbeck lectures. She provided a glimpse into the Langlands program, a series of conjectures first described in a January 1967 letter from Robert P. Langlands, Professor Emeritus in the School of Mathematics, to André Weil, who also served as a Professor in the School from 1958–98. In her lectures, Caraiani discussed the geometric ingredients of the Langlands correspondence, first in the special case of the modular curve and then for higher-dimensional Shimura varieties.

The Terng and Uhlenbeck lectures are available to watch on the IAS YouTube channel.

2024 Women+ and Math
Andrea Kane

The 2024 program was organized by Wei Ho, W+AM Director and Visiting Professor in the School of Mathematics. Ho also holds appointments at Princeton University and the University of Michigan. Dusa McDuff, Member (1976, 2002) and Visitor (1977–78) in the School of Mathematics, now based at Barnard College and Columbia University, also organized the event, with the help of the Program Committee.

Founded in 1993 at the Park City Mathematics Institute, W+AM was established at IAS the following year, under the leadership of Uhlenbeck and Terng, with support from then-Director Phillip Griffiths. Ever since, the program has been dedicated to developing and fostering a successful living and learning environment for a diverse mathematical community. W+AM is open to all, regardless of gender, who support its mission of increasing access to mathematics for women. The program works to form fruitful research relationships between its participants. It aims to establish a mentoring network to support early career scholars. In 2019, the program was recognized for its impact with the American Mathematical Society’s “Mathematics Programs that Make a Difference” Award.

W+AM receives generous support from the Institute for Advanced Study, the National Science Foundation, Lisa Simonyi, The Robert S. Hillas Fund, the Minerva Research Foundation, and Princeton University Department of Mathematics.