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MI CONSORTIUM

MI CONSORTIUM

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MI CONSORTIUM

Consortium for Mathematics for Industrial Technologies, Mission and Outline (August 2008)

Recently mathematics and technologies have been directly linked. Examples of this link include computer graphics, information security, control engineering, wavelets, financial engineering, and biotechnology. Amalgamation of algebra geometry and technologies is particularly notable, and this tie appears to become even stronger in the future. At the same time, areas in mathematics, which have traditionally had a strong connection with technologies implicitly and explicitly, such as numerical analysis and statistics, will continue to be as important as ever. Hence, it can be said that the 21st century is the era of new and broadened mathematics.

In fact, mathematics is now an essential foundation for industrial growth. Reflecting this fact, mathematics researchers’ interests and understanding towards industrial technologies in Europe and North America are becoming keener, and their involvement in industrial technologies is on the rise. On the other hand, the mindset of a large part of Japanese mathematicians lags far behind their Western counterparts because of their strong orientation toward pure mathematics. Due to this environment, there are few opportunities in Japan for excellent students, who have studied mathematics, to actively turn their eyes to technologies. As part of our initiative to launch the Education - and - Research Hub for Math-for - Industry, which is our Global COE Program supported by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Kyushu University is launching the Consortium for Mathematics for Industrial Technologies. In order to actively incorporate mathematical applications into future industrial technologies in Japan, we do not limit the scope of our activities within one university, but in conjunction with industry, we strive for developing a new mathematics field, Mathematics for Industry, and producing mathematicians who possess a high degree of mathematical abilities as well as technological sense.

Purposes of the Consortium are:

・To develop useful mathematics through interactions between industry and universities, aiming at attaining technology transfer in mathematics;
・To support engineers and researchers in the industry polish their mathematical skills through interaction;
・To build a system where industry members provide cooperation and support for training at universities
・To establish cooperation and support from universities to train personnel in industry; and
・To grow new mathematics fields based on research in useful mathematics.

The Content of the Program includes:

・To plan and organize forums (such as workshops) where engineers and researchers interested in mathematics can get together;
・To promote collaborative research projects between industry and universities or other similar organizations;
・To establish reciprocal agreements where industry actively considers Ph.D. students for long-term internships, while universities accept engineers and researchers registered at companies as doctorate students;
・To send researchers in industry to participate in training the university’s graduate students through lectures, seminars, etc.;
・To promote interchanges between industry and universities in order to deepen mutual understanding and to enhance graduate-level training in mathematics; and
・To impart information and enlighten the general public on mathematics for industrial technologies.

Background:

・Situation surrounding mathematics in Japan

Typical mathematics departments/institutes in Japan are strongly oriented towards pure mathematics, and do not pay much attention to applied mathematics. Thus, the likelihood of excellent students, who have studied mathematics under such an environment, being interested in technologies is low. This situation does not only meet the needs of the society, but also tends to limit the contribution of mathematics to Japan’s endeavors toward maintaining prosperity in science and technology.

According to the survey conducted by the National Institute of Science and Technology Policy of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology in 2006, (i) the percentage of researchers with a mathematical background in the research and development teams in the private sector is much smaller in Japan compared to that in Europe and North America (26% in Japan as opposed to 65% in the West), while (ii) research and development businesses in Japan are calling for a percentage of mathematicians comparable to that in Europe and the North America.

・Besides contributing to new technologies, mathematics is likely to increase productivity

Understanding mathematics is essential to eliminate wasted efforts by blindly using commercially available software packages. Solid mathematical knowledge can also eliminate possible anxieties and risks incurred by leaving a judgment on accuracy of a result to software.

A mathematical point of view is useful in obtaining a universal understanding of individual models.

・Production of people highly educated in mathematics is essential for future development of Japan, and is vital to advancement of sciences

Through our consortium activities, we aim to elevate our Mathematical Research Center for Industrial Technology to an advanced form as exemplified by Institute for Mathematics and Its Applications, Institute of Technology, University of Minnesota (USA, 1982 -); Oxford Centre for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, University of Oxford (UK, 1989 -); Fraunhofer Chalmers Research Centre for Industrial Mathematics (Germany, 2001 -); and European Consortium for Mathematics for Industry (ECMI, 1986 -).

Overview of consortium operations:

The hub functions will be located at the Graduate School of Mathematics and Mathematical Research Center for Industrial Technology of Kyushu University. The hub will organize and operate interchange programs like workshops, disseminate information, e.g. by publishing quarterly newsletters (on our website), and provide associated administrative services.

The consortium will be composed of partner companies and other bodies. Partner companies include private corporations and public organizations (educational institutes) that will provide one or more of the following support functions:

1)Collaborative research,

2)dispatch of personnel,

3)support by hiring postdoctoral fellows and other personnel,

4)ooperation by providing support for publications,

5)participation in and support for workshops (providing a venue, sharing part of the cost, etc.)

6)acceptance of Ph.D. students as long-term interns (three months or longer).

If you would support our objectives and join us in our mission, we would appreciate your participation in the Consortium. Please contact us for details about becoming a participating partner.

The inquiry is here.

News Letters(MI CONSORTIUM)

The MI Consortium has a great support by the companies below.

Hitachi, Ltd.
NIPPON TELEGRAPH AND TELEPHONE CORPORATION
TOSHIBA CORPORATION
Ube Industries, Ltd.
DIC Corporation
IBM Japan, Ltd.
FUJITSU LABORATORIES LTD.
Panasonic Corporation
Nisshin Fire & Marine Insurance Co.,Ltd.
Zetta Technology Inc.
Mazda Motor Corporation
ING Life Insurance Company, Ltd.
Nippon Steel Corporation

ING Life Insurance Company, Ltd.
Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V. (Royal Philips Electronics) (work in progress)
IBM Thomas J. Watson Research Center (work in progress)

Hitachi, Ltd.
Ube Industries, Ltd.
Nisshin Fire & Marine Insurance Co.,Ltd.
Mazda Motor Corporation
Nippon Steel Corporation
FUJITSU LABORATORIES LTD.
Turbo Data Laboratories,Inc.