What is the Academy for the Mathematical Sciences?
The Academy for the Mathematical Sciences (AcadMathSci) will be an authoritative and persuasive voice for the whole of the mathematical sciences. We will work together to develop, communicate, teach and use the power of the mathematical sciences to benefit our world. This includes teaching and education, academic research pushing the frontiers of what is known, and the implementation of the mathematical sciences in practice. The Academy will be dedicated to supporting the advancement of the field ensuring that it delivers on its potential to enrich our world, by nurturing the people pipeline, and increasing societal engagement and recognition of the value, and indeed beauty, of mathematics. We know that the mathematical sciences improve lives, help people, help society, and improve the economy and productivity.
We are currently in a two-year “proto-Academy” phase as we set up the founding structure. The proto-Academy Executive Committee is leading a focussed programme of work to put in place the structures required for the full Academy to be launched by the first half of 2025.
The proposed Academy will work to make a difference in many ways including:
- People Pipeline. The health of the discipline is reliant upon shoring up the people pipeline at all stages from school through to research – including the supply of excellent teachers to ensure a virtuous circle, and a better deal for early-career mathematicians.
- Policy. The Academy will lead on both ‘maths for policy’ and ‘policy for maths’. It will ensure it has a voice at the table where policy and funding decisions are made. For example, mathematics is the A-level subject taken by more people each year than any other, and yet it is also the most underfunded.
- Mathematical Excellence. The Academy will champion the importance of mathematical excellence and cutting-edge mathematical sciences research, both fundamental and directly applicable. Further, it will work to bolster communication channels in both directions between researchers and users of mathematics for the benefit of all.
The Academy will be inclusive in at least the following ways:
- It will cover all the mathematical sciences, including (but not limited to) pure mathematics, applied mathematics, statistics, data science and operational research;
- It will involve and include practitioners, academics, teachers, and other educators;
- It will promote an inclusive and diverse mathematical sciences community, with a key focus on improving the representation of, and opportunities for, previously under-represented groups of people;
- It will work with people in all the nations of the UK – England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – and recognise that many important matters for the Academy (including in education) are devolved to the individual nations;
- It will engage with mathematical scientists and those who use and work with maths throughout the UK and beyond.
We are delighted by the leading role that the learned societies are taking in the creation of the Academy as highlighted in their Joint Statement below.
The Council for the Mathematical Sciences, and its five member societies, established the process to determine the feasibility and set-up of an Academy for the Mathematical Sciences. The mathematical community in the UK is a world leader and provides the bedrock to all the sciences and major technological advancements. Developing a single voice on issues affecting the whole community, including educators, practitioners, and academics, will be a key aim of the Academy for the Mathematical Sciences. It is important that the mathematical sciences community, through a potential Academy, becomes more influential with government, funding agencies, industry, the public and the media. We look forward to supporting the programme, to develop a proposal for a future Academy, that is sustainable and works in partnership with the societies covering mathematics, statistics, and operational research.