National Science Foundation Award

Award Date: January 2012


Brenda Johnon (Mathematics) has been awarded a $30,000 grant from the National Science Foundation’s Division of Mathematics Workshop and Conferences Program.  This award will support participants from institutions in the U.S. to attend the Fourth Arolla Conference on Algebraic Topology. 


This proposal will provide support for participants from institutions in the U.S. to attend the Fourth Arolla Conference on Algebraic Topology. The conference will be held August 20th - 26th, 2012 in the village of Arolla, Switzerland. The goal of the Arolla conferences is to bring together experts from a wide variety of fields within homotopy theory and K-theory to learn of current ground-breaking work throughout these disciplines. The following individuals have agreed to give plenary lectures at the upcoming conference: Arthur Bartels (Munster), Mark Behrens (MIT), Gunnar Carlsson (Stanford), Michael Ching (Amherst), Daniel Dugger (Oregon), Teena Gerhardt (Michigan State), Ian Leary (Ohio State), Ib Madsen (Copenhagen), Niko Naumann (Regensburg), Angelica Orsono (Chicago), Kari Ragnarsson (DePaul), Goncalo Tabuada (MIT), and Antoine Touze (Paris XIII). These plenary speakers have made significant contributions to many subfields of algebraic topology, including K-theory, L-theory, equivariant stable homotopy theory, homotopy theory and algebraic geometry, applied and computational algebraic topology, group representations and cohomology, homotopical algebra, Goodwillie calculus and operads, and higher category theory. There will be 10-12 contributed lectures, chosen from abstracts submitted by registered participants so as to cover a wide range of topics.

Algebraic topology is a field of mathematics that uses algebraic tools to study properties of shapes that are preserved under continuous deformations. It developed as a distinct discipline within mathematics in the late 19th/early 20th century and has played a major role in 20th and 21st century mathematics. The Arolla conferences are among the few continuing established conferences that cover a broad range of topics within algebraic topology. The conferences bring together researchers from around the world who work in many specialties within algebraic topology to exchange ideas and learn of new developments in the field. The conferences particularly encourage participation from young researchers. Funding from this proposal will support U.S.-based speakers at the 2012 conference, thereby enabling conference participants to learn of work that is taking place in the U.S. It will also support participation by young researchers and those from groups that are traditionally underrepresented in mathematics in the U.S., providing them with opportunities to learn more about what is happening in the field, share their work with others, explore ideas for new research, and develop professional networks in Europe.