Latest AustMS WIMSIG Awardees

Congratulations to the Awardees of the AustMS WIMSIG Awards in the October 2018 round.

  • Cheryl E Praeger Travel Award has been awarded to Becky Armstrong (The University of Sydney) to attend the Women in Operator Algebras workshop, November 2–9, 2018, Banff, Canada.
  • An Anne Penfold Street Award has been awarded to Sevvandi Kandanaarachchi (Monash University) for ACEMS 2018 in Victoria in October—November 2018.

We hope you have wonderful adventures, and look forward to hearing about them. The next round of Award applications closes on April 1, 2019.

Two female scientists awarded Nobel Prizes

Two of this year’s Nobel Prizes were awarded to women — Donna Strickland for physics and Frances Arnold for chemistry. The rarity of this event generated some debate and discussion.

Lisa Harvey-Smith is Australia’s inaugural Women in STEM Ambassador

The appointment of Prof Harvey-Smith as Ambassador for Women in STEM is part of a $4.5 million Government package announced in the 2018–19 Budget, committed to improving gender equity in STEM. The announcement was made by Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, Karen Andrews. Minister Andrews has first hand knowledge of the issues around gender equity in STEM: prior to her career in politics, she was a mechanical engineer working in power generation and petrochemical industries.

WIMSIG Executive Committee Call for Nominations

At the end of the year, a number of positions on the WIMSIG Executive Committee will be declared vacant, and an election will be held for office bearers. The positions that will be open and the length of term are as follows.

  • Secretary, 2yr term
  • Treasurer, 2yr term
  • Ordinary Member (two positions), 2yr term
  • Student Member, 1yr term

The new Executive Committee will consist of the elected committee members, the Chair (currently the Incoming Chair, Jessica Purcell) and the Immediate Past Chair (currently the Chair, Yvonne Stokes). Note that the Student Member is a new position, the addition of which was unanimously supported in the recent vote on the change of rules.

The Returning Officer is Birgit Loch (b.loch@latrobe.edu.au).

Nominations for any or all of the Offices and Seats to be filled may be made by any two Members who are entitled to vote at the ensuing election. The persons nominated must also be entitled to vote at the ensuing election. Only members of WIMSIG who are also members of the Australian Mathematical Society have voting rights. Nominations must be received by the Returning Officer no later than November 30.

Nominations should be emailed to the Returning Officer, and need to include the nominee’s name, the second nominator’s name, the role, and a statement from the nominee on why they would like to take on the role, which will be sent out to the WIMSIG membership list should there be an election.

Please consider nominating. Several members of the current Executive Committee, including the Secretary and the Treasurer are stepping down. Membership of the WIMSIG Executive Committee is a real opportunity to support and strengthen the Australian mathematical community.

People considering nomination are welcome to discuss the committee roles with current members of the Executive Committee. The current members are as follows.

Chair: Yvonne Stokes (WIMSIG-chair@women.austms.org.au)

Incoming Chair: Jessica Purcell (jessica.purcell@monash.edu.au)

Treasurer: Giang Nguyen (WIMSIG-treasurer@women.austms.org.au)

Secretary: Catherine Penington (WIMSIG-secretary@women.austms.org.au)

Ordinary Members:


WIMSIG Gathering at The University of Newcastle

  • Thursday 15 November, 2018

This WIMSIG Gathering will be held at lunchtime (with lunch provided) on Thursday 15 November as part of the AMSI/AustMS Workshop on Mathematical Thinking, which will be held on November 14-16. This workshop, together with the workshop on Diagrammatic Reasoning in Higher Education and EViMS 3, are part of the Special Semester on Mathematical Thinking hosted by UON’s Priority Research Centre: Computer-Assisted Research Mathematics and Its Applications (CARMA).

These three workshops bring together international experts across neuroscience/psychology, mathematics, education and philosophy, who will all bring to bear their own lenses on Mathematics, Mathematics Education and Mathematical Thinking. Speakers include psychologist Rafael Núñez, mathematical communicator Keith Devlin, dancer Erik Stern and educator Kaye Stacey.

A small number of speaking slots are still available, so if interested please follow the links above and submit an abstract at your earliest convenience.

WIMSIG General Meeting and Dinner at AustMS 2018

The WIMSIG Women in Mathematical Sciences Dinner will be held at the Playford, 120 North Tce, Adelaide, on Monday 3 December, just prior to the 62nd Annual Meeting of the Australian Mathematical Society at The University of Adelaide. The event is free to all participants of the AustMS meeting, regardless of gender or membership of WIMSIG. Please arrive for a 6.45pm start.

The purpose of the dinner is to support women, and particularly early career researchers, to enter and establish careers in mathematics. Come along to hear about the careers of the AustMS 2018 female plenary speakers, to discuss issues concerning women in mathematics in Australia, and to network with fellow WIMSIG members and supporters.

At this point in time, there are only a very few tickets remaining, so register very soon if you wish to attend. If you have registered for the Dinner but are not able to attend, please log onto the conference registration system and de-register for the Dinner so that someone else can register and take your place and funds are not wasted.

The annual WIMSIG General Meeting will also be held from 5–6pm on Monday 3 December, just prior to the Women in Mathematical Sciences Dinner. As with the Dinner, anyone interested in WIMSIG activities is welcome to attend. The venue will be room H6-03 on Level 6 of the Hawke Building, City West Campus, University of South Australia, 55 North Tce, Adelaide. It is an easy walk from there to the Playford for the Dinner.

Flags, Galleries and Reflection Groups


Australian National University

The Mathematical Science Institute at ANU will shortly be advertising both fixed term and continuing positions, including identified positions open only to female applicants. Details will be posted by early November on the ANU jobs site and on MathJobs.

CSIRO Data61

Macquarie University



Have you read an interesting article? Have some news? Have an opportunity available?

Please send items to WIMSIG-news@women.austms.org.au.

Note: Newsletters are published on the 1st day of each month (or soon after). The deadline for submitted items is the 27th day of each month.