Department of Mathematics and Statistics

Department of Mathematics and Statistics
Department of Mathematics and Statistics
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Department News & Events

Department News & Events

Congratulations to Mathematical Physics (MAPH) student Erin Crawley

Erin with her parents and Prof. Marc Dignam, Physics Department Head and Prof. James Mingo, Mathematics and Statistics Head
Erin with her parents and Prof. Marc Dignam, Physics Dept. Head
and Prof. James Mingo, Math & Stats Head.
(Photo courtesy of Prof. Dignam)

June 11th, 2019

A huge congratulations to graduating Mathematical Physics (MAPH) student Erin Avryl Crawley for the four medals presented to her at the graduation ceremony this year! She received The Governor General's Academic Medal for the highest academic standing in a Bachelor degree program at Queen's, The Prince of Wales Prize for the highest academic record in the Faculty of Arts and Science, the Medal in Mathematics and Statistics, and the Medal in Physics.


Nonlocal problems in PDEs and geometry

May 20-24, 2019

Prof. Eleonora Cinti (Università di Bologna, Italy) will teach a 5-day mini-course aimed at graduate students and junior researchers at the intersection of Analysis and Geometry.

Dr. Cinti earned her Ph.D in 2010 and since then has worked at the Max Planck Institute in Leipzig, the Weierstrass Institute in Berlin, and various Italian universities (Pavia, Bologna, Torino). Eleonora Cinti's research focuses on nonlocal partial differential equations, geometric measure theory, and calculus of variations.


The mini-course will be structured as follows:

  • Lecture 1 (Monday, May 20): Preliminaries: basic facts about the Laplacian and harmonic functions.
  • Lecture 2 (Tuesday, May 21): The fractional Laplacians: motivations and properties.
  • Problem Session (Wednesday, May 22).
  • Lecture 3 (Thursday, May 23): $s$-Harmonic functions and the Caffarelli-Silvestre extension theorem.
  • Lecture 4 (Friday, May 24): Geometry meets PDEs, a nonlocal phase transition model and nonlocal minimal surfaces.


If you want to attend the mini-course, please email

Ram Murty awarded designation of Distinguished University Professor

May 9th, 2019

The designation of Distinguished University Professor is the highest research-related the University can bestow on an individual holding an academic appointment at Queen’s, and recognizes those exceptional individuals who have had their accomplishments internationally recognized. His contributions to the field of number theory have been and have had a significant impact on Canadian society and worldwide.

This designation will be officially recognized at the 2019 Fall Convocation.


All Girls Math Team Shines on the International Stage

EGMO Team Canada 2019

EGMO Team Canada 2019

May 8th, 2019

The Canadian Mathematical Society is pleased to announce that its second team to compete in the European Girls Mathematical Olympiad (EGMO) has returned from Ukraine, medals in hand. The Canadian EGMO Team earned two Bronze Medals and two Honourable Mentions.

The EGMO competition got started in 2012 when it was first written in Cambridge, UK and has since grown to include more than 50 countries. Participation in the EGMO is by invitation only. Each student competes individually to solve six questions in a competition lasting two days, four and a half hours each day. The Girls Math Team Canada was selected largely based on the results of the 2018 Canadian Open Mathematics Challenge (COMC) written in November, as well as a Team Selection Test that was sent to the top 15 girls from the 2018 COMC.

Read full story: Canadian Mathematical Society

Math PhD student Stefanie Knebel wins Art of Research photo contest

Stephanie Knebel wins Art of Research photo contest

Community Collaborations – Women in Mathematics

April 22nd, 2019

Congratulations to Stefanie, who was awarded the prize in the Community Collaborations category.

Here is Stefanie’s commentary:  Mathematical thinking is about finding patterns and structure. As a woman in the mathematics PhD program, I hope to inspire young women to follow their passion and find beauty in mathematics. At Queen’s we offer the MathQuest camp for high school girls. As captured in the photo, I am brainstorming ways to teach game theory and linear algebra. This is also a part of my research with Dr. Peter Taylor, where we work with teachers across Ontario looking for innovative ways to incorporate mathematical thinking in education. We hope to change the math curriculum by making it a more engaging, positive and memorable experience.

The 2019 Art of Research photo contest received more than 100 submissions from Queen’s faculty, staff, students, and alumni, who took up the challenge of capturing their research programs in engaging and thought-provoking ways.

See all of the winning images at: The Queen's Gazette

The woman behind the first black hole image

The woman behind the first black hole image

April 11th, 2019

A 29-year-old computer scientist has earned plaudits worldwide for helping develop the algorithm that created the first-ever image of a black hole.

Katie Bouman led development of a computer program that made the breakthrough image possible.

The remarkable photo, showing a halo of dust and gas 500 million trillion km from Earth, was released on Wednesday.

Source: The BBC


Bahman Gharesifard awarded the CAIMS-PIMS Early Career Award

April 1st, 2019

Bahman Gharesifard has been awarded the CAIMS-PIMS Early Career Award, jointly awarded by the Canadian Applied & Industrial Math Society and the Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences . This award comes with an invitation to speak at the CAIMS Annual Meeting, to be held in Whistler BC June 9-13 2019.

Congratulations Bahman!


First annual Canadian Undergrad Conference on AI

First annual Canadian Undergraduate Conference on Artificial Intelligence

March 31st, 2019

The first annual Canadian Undergraduate Conference on Artificial Intelligence took place on March 9th, 2019. Backed by QMIND (whose members include Mathematics and Engineering students) and a strong Queen’s community, the event marked its debut on the national stage with delegations from Queen’s University, McGill University, University of Toronto, Ryerson University, and University of Manitoba. In total, over 200 student delegates, industry leaders, and sponsor representatives came together for the day to discuss the state of Canadian AI.

A written summary of the conference can be viewed here:


Math Quest Director to speak at Fields Institute

March 30th, 2019

Time: 10:50-11:10 a.m.  Place: Fields Institute, Room 230

Speaker: Siobhain Broekhoven, (Queen’s University)

Title: Sex, math and games: Transitioning students to the next level with recreational math.

Abstract: Successful transitions enrich the student experience whether the transition is from elementary to secondary school, secondary to tertiary education, or tertiary to the work force or academia. Why is it that females (which studies show have equal ability to males) are not transitioning into STEM fields at similar rates? This CMS speciality program at Queen’s University is designed to motivate and engage this underrepresented demographic. This talk looks at the design of sessions that are low floor high ceiling, experiential, more collaborative (and less competitive) that lead to a growth mindset; relieving math anxiety; and connecting mathematics to current careers, the arts and real world applications —all the while building community.

Siobhain Broekhoven is an Intermediate-Senior math, physics and Special Education Specialist with Algonquin Lakeshore Catholic District School Board, currently working with youth at risk. She is also the developer and director of Math Quest, Queen’s Math Camp for Girls, a summer program of the Department of Math and Stats at Queen’s University, sponsored by the Canadian Math Society. The program runs for a week in August each summer. Her interests lie in helping students to build resilience and develop a growth mindset.

Source:  The Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences


Machine learning lands Canadian Researchers $1M Turing Award

Machine Learning

March 27th, 2019

Three researchers, two of them Canadian, have won the world's top award in computer science for developing the ability of computers to learn like humans, by imitating the human brain and how it functions using networks of "neurons." 

That allows computers to acquire new skills by looking at lots of examples and finding and recognizing patterns, as humans do.

Machine learning — based on "deep learning" and "neural networks" —  has led to the development of artificial intelligence that now powers everyday web and smartphone applications from voice, image and facial recognition to language translation. It's increasingly being used in more complicated tasks like generating art, creating text and diagnosing cancer from images.

Read more here...

Source:  The CBC