Ramanujan Colloquium
The Mathematics Department is pleased to announce the launch of a new annual distinguished colloquium series, The Ramanujan Colloquium, from Spring 2007. Distinguished Visiting Professor George Andrews has generously offered to sponsor this colloquium for the first four years.The Department currently has three distinguished colloquia – the Erdos Colloquium, the Ulam Colloquium, and the CAM Colloquium. These featured colloquia have brought very eminent speakers to our department and have raised our visibility campuswide and nationally. The Department has one of the strongest programs in areas of mathematics influenced by Ramanujan and the presence of Professor Andrews has raised the stature of this program significantly. Thus it was felt that it would be well worthwhile to launch this new colloquium series. The Ramanujan Colloquium will be on areas of mathematics influenced by Ramanujan. This is quite broad, yet has a sense of focus. The plan is to have a Ramanujan Lecturer visit our department for one week, give the featured Ramanujan Colloquium on Monday, followed by seminars the rest of the week. This will have great impact on our research and graduate program.The Ramanujan Colloquium will be held in the Spring during the two months when Professor Andrews is here.The First Ramanujan Colloquium will be on Monday, March 19, 2007 by Professor Manjul Bhargava of Princeton University. Following this he will give seminars in the department for the rest of the week. Thus the Ramanujan Colloquium is off to a fine start.Bhargava is a new phenomenon in the world of mathematics. In a revolutionary PhD thesis at Princeton written under the direction of Andrew Wiles, Bhargava produced composition laws for forms of higher degree. This was the first real progress in this direction since Gauss who produced a composition law for quadratic forms. Bhargava’s thesis is published as four papers in the Annals of Mathematics. At age 28 he was made full professor at Princeton. Bhargava was awarded the First SASTRA Ramanujan Prize in December 2005. This prize is awarded to mathematicians not exceeding the age of 32 for outstanding contributions to areas influenced by Ramanujan. In his talk at SASTRA in Ramanujan’s hometown Kumbakonam, India, on Ramanujan’s birthday, December 22, 2005, Bhargava announced the complete solution to a problem of Ramanujan on universal quadratic forms.I wish to express our appreciation to Professor Andrews for sponsoring the Ramanujan Colloquium.
Krishnaswami Alladi
