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Some good news! Jacob Biamonte applied for and received a grant from the Foundational Questions Institute (FQXi) to have a small meeting for about 4 nights in Torino, Italy — at the ISI Foundation, where he works. The meeting will focus on the mathematical and conceptual foundations of network theory. The ISI Foundation has many researchers who work on traditional aspects of complex networks, so this is a pretty good location for it.
He invited Tobias Fritz, Eugene Lerman and David Spivak and me to speak, and it looks like most of us will be able to make it. We need to choose a time in the window from April 15 to June 1, 2015.
We should decide on what to do. Besides discussing and putting together our different ideas on network theory — the most important part — it might be good to have our talks videotaped and put on the web. Since our talks will be open to the public, maybe some other Azimuth members can show up.
Any other good ideas?
Each funded grant is required to deliver a 'product' and also to have a 'statement'. These, as taken from the application, are below.
Product: Network theory is a diverse subject which developed independently in several disciplines to rely on graphs with additional mathematical structure to model everything from complex systems to toy physical theories. The sessions will be aimed to further our understanding and also raise interest in the mathematical theory underlying the relations between seemingly different networked systems. We have a professionally maintained laboratory webpage (www.TheQuantumNetwork.org). We will deliver the following: (i) an event webpage for the sessions will be created; after the work sessions the webpage will contain (ii) slides of all talks; (iii) abstracts of all talks; and (iv) a list of attendees.
Statement: The intensive work sessions will enable FQXi members to meet with several other researchers and hence build leverage in an emerging and foundational field. Mathematical network theory explores the interplay and pinpoints the relationships between the use of networks ranging from e.g. ecological networks, tensor networks in quantum physics to even quantum constructor theory as a formal network theory. The sessions will be advertised and open to the public, and the invited speakers and local attendees should attract several researchers. It would otherwise not be possible using our existing resources.