Friday, October 26, Skiles 006,
686 Cherry St NW, Atlanta, GA 30311
12:15 pm: sandwiches
12:30 pm: Christine Heitsch, Georgia Institute of Technology.
Title: From Plato to Pasteur and Beyond: the Combinatorics of RNA Viruses
Abstract: The interface of mathematics and biology has many facets, distinguished by both the biological applications and the mathematical motivations. We discuss here the problem of RNA folding which lies at the intersection of discrete mathematics and molecular biology. As we will illustrate, new theorems in combinatorics are helping to answer the question, “Is there a cure for the common cold?” (This short talk will be accessible to undergraduates.)
1 pm: refreshments, break
1:10 pm: Victoria Powers, Emory University.
Title: The Mathematics and Statistics of Gerrymandering
Abstract: Gerrymandering refers to drawing political boundary lines with an ulterior motive, such as helping one political party or group of voters. In the US there is a history of manipulating the shapes of legislative districts in order to obtain a preferred outcome. In recent years there have been a number of court cases in which the plaintiffs have used mathematical or statistical ideas to attempt to convince the courts that gerrymandering has occurred. In this talk we will look at some of these methods and explain how mathematicians, statisticians, and computer scientists are helping in the legal fight against gerrymandering. (this talk will be suitable for undergraduates).
Friday, October 26, 2018 - 12:15pm to 2:30pm