Preserving Strength While Meeting Challenges

Summary Report of a Workshop on Actions for the Mathematical Sciences

Board on Mathematical Sciences

Commission on Physical Sciences, Mathematics, and Applications

National Research Council

National Academy Press
Washington, D.C.
1997



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Preserving Strength While Meeting Challenges Summary Report of a Workshop on Actions for the Mathematical Sciences Board on Mathematical Sciences Commission on Physical Sciences, Mathematics, and Applications National Research Council National Academy Press Washington, D.C. 1997

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NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Bruce Alberts is president of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievement of engineers. Dr. William A. Wulf is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Kenneth I. Shine is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy's purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Bruce Alberts and Dr. William A. Wulf are chairman and vice-chairman, respectively, of the National Research Council. This project was supported by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, National Science Foundation (Grant No. DMS-95222123), and Intel Foundation. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the sponsors. Copyright 1997 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. International Standard Book Number 0-309-05883-X Additional copies of this report are available from: Board on Mathematical Sciences National Research Council 2101 Constitution Avenue, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20418 202-334-2421 email: bms@nas.edu Printed in the United States of America

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BOARD ON MATHEMATICAL SCIENCES AVNER FRIEDMAN, University of Minnesota, Chair LOUIS AUSLANDER, City University of New York (deceased 1997) MARY ELLEN BOCK, Purdue University PETER E. CASTRO, Eastman Kodak Company FAN R.K. CHUNG, University of Pennsylvania R. DUNCAN LUCE, University of California, Irvine ROBERT MACPHERSON, Institute for Advanced Study SUSAN MONTGOMERY, University of Southern California GEORGE NEMHAUSER, Georgia Institute of Technology ANIL NERODE, Cornell University DIANNE O'LEARY, University of Maryland INGRAM OLKIN, Stanford University RONALD F. PEIERLS, Brookhaven National Laboratory DONALD ST. P. RICHARDS, University of Virginia WILLIAM P. ZIEMER, Indiana University Ex Officio Member DARYL PREGIBON, Bell Laboratories Chair, Committee on Applied and Theoretical Statistics Staff JOHN R. TUCKER, Director RUTH E. O'BRIEN, Staff Associate BARBARA W. WRIGHT, Administrative Assistant

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COMMISSION ON PHYSICAL SCIENCES, MATHEMATICS, AND APPLICATIONS ROBERT J. HERMANN, United Technologies Corporation, Co-chair W. CARL LINEBERGER, University of Colorado, Co-chair PETER M. BANKS, Environmental Research Institute of Michigan LAWRENCE D. BROWN, University of Pennsylvania RONALD G. DOUGLAS, Texas A&M University JOHN E. ESTES, University of California at Santa Barbara L. LOUIS HEGEDUS, Elf Atochem North America, Inc. JOHN E. HOPCROFT, Cornell University RHONDA J. HUGHES, Bryn Mawr College SHIRLEY A. JACKSON, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission KENNETH H. KELLER, University of Minnesota KENNETH I. KELLERMANN, National Radio Astronomy Observatory MARGARET KIVELSON, University of California at Los Angeles DANIEL KLEPPNER, Massachusetts Institute of Technology JOHN KREICK, Sanders, a Lockheed Martin Company MARSHA I. LESTER, University of Pennsylvania THOMAS A. PRINCE, California Institute of Technology NICHOLAS P. SAMIOS, Brookhaven National Laboratory L.E. SCRIVEN, University of Minnesota SHMUEL WINOGRAD, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center CHARLES A. ZRAKET, Mitre Corporation (retired) NORMAN METZGER, Executive Director

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PREFACE As part of the global science community, the U.S. mathematical sciences community1 today faces new challenges in addition to its traditional ones. In common with all of U.S. science and technology at the close of the twentieth century, the mathematical sciences community is now being called upon to respond to different needs even as budgets become more tightly constrained. New accountability criteria have come into play. Academia, business and industry, and government continue to undergo profound changes (described in several of the invited speakers' papers provided here) that affect the community. In this report, the National Research Council's (NRC's) Board on Mathematical Sciences (BMS) summarizes the results of a workshop held May 17-19, 1996, in Alexandria, Virginia. The workshop, entitled "Actions for the Mathematical Sciences in the Changed Environment," was organized by the BMS with support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, National Science Foundation, and Intel Foundation. This workshop summary was prepared by the BMS and was reviewed by the NRC in accord with usual procedures. The BMS believes that the views expressed at the workshop should be seen by the mathematical sciences community at large. AVNER FRIEDMAN, WORKSHOP CHAIR DIRECTOR, INSTITUTE FOR MATHEMATICS AND ITS APPLICATIONS UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA CHAIR, BOARD ON MATHEMATICAL SCIENCES NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL 1   "Mathematical sciences" means pure mathematics, applied mathematics, statistics and probability, operations research, and scientific computing (Educating Mathematical Scientists: Doctoral Study and the Postdoctoral Experience in the United States, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C., 1992). The mathematical sciences community includes all individuals whose work involves the mathematical sciences, whether it be research, education, application, scientific computation, or administration and sponsorship of such work.

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CONTENTS Introduction   1 Invited Workshop Papers         Introductory Comments Avner Friedman, Chair Board on Mathematical Sciences, National Research Council   5     Expectations and New Opportunities at the Division of Mathematical Sciences Donald J. Lewis, Director Division of Mathematical Sciences, National Science Foundation   8     Communicating Mathematics to the Public Michael Schrage, MIT Media Lab/Sloan School Columnist, Los Angeles Times   14     A View from Capitol Hill David Goldston Legislative Director for Representative Sherwood Boehlert   20     Physical Scientists Are from Mars, Mathematicians Are from Venus; How on Earth Can We Communicate? Frank H. Stillinger Bell Laboratories (a subsidiary of Lucent Technologies, Inc.)   24     The Growing Impact of Mathematics in Molecular Biology Michael S. Waterman, Department of Mathematics, Department of Biological Sciences, and Department of Computer Science University of Southern California   27     Mathematicians as Educators Hyman Bass, Adrain Professor of Mathematics Columbia University   36     Educating Mathematical Sciences Graduate Students Ronald G. Douglas, Executive Vice President and Provost Texas A&M University   41     A View of Major Trends at Research Universities E.F. Infante, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs University of Minnesota   45

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Summary         Background and Overview   51     Highlights   51     Closing Observations   59     References   61 Appendices     Appendix A   Workshop Participants, Agenda, and Discussion Materials   65 Appendix B   The "Douglas" Report's Executive Summary   74 Appendix C   National Science Foundation Workshop Summary Report   77