Dear Colleague

In the last few years many of us have been involved in several activities aimed at evaluating the state-of-the-art of industrial mathematics in Europe, at intensifying contacts among different groups and institutes, at outlining the need for a tighter collaboration between European companies and mathematicians, putting in evidence that the latter is instrumental for innovation and thus for competitiveness.

Based on the success of the Forward Look “Mathematics and Industry” (supported by the European Science Foundation), as well as on the failure of our attempts to obtain a substantial EU support for the design and the implementation of a (virtual) European infrastructure for industrial mathematics, we reached the conclusion that the only chance to get financial support to start such an infrastructure is to create a legal entity that has a European dimension, is inclusive, and proves to have the capabilities of starting some “prototypes” of the activities that the infrastructure shall perform. This is also the message that we got from various feedbacks from Brussels.

Of course, we do not have to create duplicates of existing structures and we have to profit of the complementary features of ECMI and EMS, of their tradition and experience, of their prestige and representativeness, so to establish a successful synergy. This is why we think ECMI and EMS are the promoting members of the new legal entity.

To combine the features of inclusiveness and of flexibility in management, we propose the creation of a structure that has the character of a network of national networks.

In this spirit we are approaching some national networks that already exist, the Applied Mathematics Committee of the EMS, the ECMI centres throughout Europe, and all the mathematicians interested in industrial mathematics (through the member-societies of EMS or through the contacts we have established during the activity of the Forward Look) to take part in this process.

On the 27th of November, in Amsterdam (details at end of letter), we will gather for a kick-off meeting of the project (for which we have chosen the name EU-MATHS-IN). You are kindly invited to attend this inaugural meeting.

The main goal of the meeting is to discuss a short term program i.e. the list of “prototypes” of the initiatives/services that could be realized with a time horizon not exceeding 1 year.

Indeed, we can count on a small support for activities that implement some of the recommendations from the Forward Look Initiative. Moreover, we will try to activate some national funds aimed at special projects.

We believe that the initiative will allow us to reach the “critical mass” for fund acquisition (from E.U. programa) and will give the opportunity to expose mathematics to industrial needs at European level, to increase the chances for every node of the national networks to get actively involved in large multidisciplinary scientific and technological projects.

Finally, it will help countries in which industrial mathematics is less developed to be helped, stimulated, and involved.

We look forward to receiving your ideas and contribution to the discussion. If you would like to attend the event, please register by sending an email to before November 15. Best wishes.

Wil Schilders on behalf of

The Scientific Organizing Committee

of the Forward Look “Mathematics and Industry”

Details of the meeting:

Venue is the Centre for Mathematics and Computer Science (CWI), located at the Science Park 123 in Amsterdam. It is easy to reach by train (take the train from Amsterdam Central to Amsterdam Science Park). The meeting will be held in the Turing Room.

The meeting will be from 11 AM till 5 PM.