REU 2010 Abstracts

Seminar Abstracts

Tuesday, June 8, 12:30 - 1:30 pm, CoRE 431.

Fred Roberts, Rutgers University, DIMACS
Title: Social Choice and Computer Science


The social choice problem arises when societies or groups wish to make collaborative decisions and it involves finding a consensus given different opinions, preferences or votes by individuals in the society. Social science methods developed over the years for dealing with this problem have led to a variety of fascinating mathematical problems. In recent years, they have begun to find novel, important applications in computer science. Moreover, computer science points of view are impacting social science applications. We will describe connections between social choice and computer science, concentrating on such topics as meta-search (combining results from multiple search engines), image processing, collaborative filtering ("recommender systems"), software measurement, electronic voting, and processing information in large databases.

Thursday, June 10, 10:30 - 11:30 am, CoRE 431.

Daniel Kral, Charles University, Prague
Title: Matchings in Graphs


The talk will be focused on one of the most intesively studied notions in structural graph theory and optimization - matchings in graphs. We recall a well-known conjecture of Lovasz and Plummer from the 1960's on the number of perfect matchings in cubic bridgeless graphs and overview recent progress on it. We also relate the existence of special matchings in planar graphs to the Four Color Theorem, one of the most famous results in graph theory, and present a proof of a particular case of the conjecture of Lovasz and Plummer which is motivated by applications in chemistry.

The talk will be self-contained assuming no previous knowledge of any concepts from graph theory.

Tuesday, June 15, 12:30 - 1:30 pm, CoRE 431.

Ethics Workshop



Tuesday, June 22, 12:30 - 1:30 pm, CoRE 431.

Bob Vanderbei, Princeton University
Title: The Search for Earth-like Planets: Yes We Can


I will first give an overview of the recent discoveries of non-Earth-like planets around other stars. I will then explain what is hard about finding Earth-like ones. Finally, I will describe the various approaches that are being considered to solve this challenging engineering problem and the role that Princeton is playing in this endeavor. Hopefully, given adequate funding, we will soon (i.e., in our lifetimes) have a catalog of stars that are known to have Earth-like planets.

Friday, June 25, 11:30 am - 12:30 pm, CoRE 431.

Lynn Canton, FEMA
Title: FEMA's Role during a Disaster


Ms. Canton will be speaking on FEMA's role during a disaster; who we are, what we do and how FEMA operates at the regional level - our concept of operations and consequence management - what we bring to the table.

Friday, July 2, 12:30 - 1:30 pm, CoRE 431.

Gene Fiorini, Rutgers University
Title: *CrIME:* *Cr*iminal *I*nvestigation through *M*athematical *E*xamination


Broadly speaking, forensic science analyzes trace evidence left at the scene of a crime which may be used to either implicate or exonerate a suspect, or just to gain further insight into the incident. Using several cases as a backdrop, this talk examines some of the common applications of mathematics and statistics to forensic science. Topics covered may include fingerprint analysis (graph theory, probability), DNA identification (probability), and forensic entomology (statistics).

Wednesday, July 14, 12:30 - 1:30 pm, CoRE 431.

Grad Student Panel


A panel of graduate students will answer questions about their experiences applying to graduate schools and being in a graduate program. Lafayette College’s REU Program will also be joining us.

NOTE: Lunch will be at 11:30 AM!

Last modified: June 30, 2010