Gérard Ben Arous

Professor of Mathematics
Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences
New York University

A specialist of probability theory and its applications, Gérard Ben Arous arrived to NYU's Courant Institute as a Professor of Mathematics in 2002.  He was appointed Director of the Courant Institute and Vice Provost for Science and Engineering Development in September 2011. A native of France, Professor Ben Arous studied Mathematics at École Normale Supérieure and earned his PhD from the University of Paris VII (1981). He has been a Professor at the University of Paris-Sud (Orsay), at École Normale Supérieure, and more recently at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, where he held the Chair of Stochastic Modeling. He headed the department of Mathematics at Orsay and the departments of Mathematics and Computer Science at École Normale Supérieure. He also founded a Mathematics research institute in Lausanne, the Bernoulli Center. He is the managing editor (with Amir Dembo, Stanford) of one of the main journals in his field, Probability Theory and Related Fields.

Professor Ben Arous works on probability theory (stochastic analysis, large deviations, random media and random matrices) and its connections with other domains of mathematics (partial differential equations, dynamical systems), physics (statistical mechanics of disordered media), or industrial applications.  He is mainly interested in the time evolution of complex systems, and the universal aspects of their long time behavior and of their slow relaxation to equilibrium, in particular how complexity and disorder imply aging. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Mathematical Statistics (as of August 2011) and an elected member of the International Statistical Institute. He was a plenary speaker at the European Congress of Mathematics, an invited speaker at the International Congress of Mathematics, received a senior Lady Davis Fellowship (Israel), the Rollo Davison Prize (Imperial College, London) and the Montyon Prize (French Academy of Sciences).

Alan Bishop

Princaple Associate Director of Science, Technology, and Engineering
Associate Director for Theory, Simulation, and Computation
Los Alamos National Laboratory

Bishop is an internationally recognized leader in theory, modeling, and simulation for condensed matter, statistical physics, and nonlinear science. He has made major contributions in the areas of soliton mathematics and applications, quantum complexity, structural and magnetic transitions, collective excitations in low-dimensional organic, inorganic and biological materials, and complex electronic and structural materials with strong spin-charge-lattice coupling.

He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a recipient of the Department of Energy's E.O. Lawrence Award, a Humboldt Senior Fellow, and a Laboratory Fellow.

Jared Bronski

Department of Mathematics
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Jared Bronski is currently an Assistant Professor in the Mathematics Department at UIUC. His field is Applied Mathematics. He is particularly interested in the areas of Nonlinear and Fiber Optics, Asymptotics, and Nonlinear Wave propagation.

Annalisa Calini

Professor and Graduate Program Co-Director
Department of Mathematics
College of Charleston

Professor Annalisa Calini's Research Interests:
Completely integrable infinite-dimensional systems: their connection to differential geometry of curves and surfaces, dynamical systems methods for perturbations of soliton equations, mathematical physics.

Roberto Camassa

Kenan Professor, 
Department of Mathematics 
University of North Carolina

Professor Roberto Camassa's Research Interests:
Nonlinear Evolution Equations, Mathematical Modeling, Fluid Mechanics, Optics

Christos Constantinidis

Department of Neurobiology & Anatomy
Wake Forest School of Medicine

Dr. Constantinidis is a Professor of Neurobiology and Anatomy at the Wake Forest School of Medicine. He received a BS degree from the University of Athens, Greece and a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, USA. He performed postdoctoral work at the Yale School of Medicine, USA and the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, in Germany. He is the recipient of a McDonnell-Pew Foundation Program in Cognitive Neuroscience Award, EMBO fellowship, and Whitehall Foundation Award. He is currently the Associate Editor of the Journal of Neurophysiology. His work investigates neurophysiological activity related to cognitive functions using non-human primate models.

Robert Desimone

Doris and Don Berkey Professor of Neuroscience
Director, McGovern Institute for Brain Research
Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Robert Desimone is director of the McGovern Institute and the Doris and Don Berkey Professor in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences. Prior to joining the McGovern Institute in 2004, he was director of the Intramural Research Program at the National Institutes of Mental Health, the largest mental health research center in the world. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  He studies the brain mechanisms that allow us to focus our attention on a specific task while filtering out irrelevant distractions. Our brains are constantly bombarded with sensory information. The ability to distinguish relevant information from irrelevant distractions is a critical skill, one that is impaired in many brain disorders.

Nick Ercolani

Professor of Mathematics
University of Arizona


Aix-Marseille University

Roy Goodman 

Department of Mathematical Sciences
New Jersey Institute of Technology

Roy Goodman´s research focuses, broadly, on nonlinear wave phenomena. The tools he uses consist mainly of asymptotic methods, dynamical systems analysis, and numerical simulation. Physical applications he has studied include storm propagation in the atmosphere at middle latitudes and the interaction of light pulses in telecommunications optical fibers. Recently, he has been investigating the interaction of nonlinear waves with localized changes to the media through which they propagate. This includes the enticing possibility of "light trapping" at specified locations in optical fibers, as well as more abstract studies of classical nonlinear wave equations. His research has explained, in great detail, a long-observed phenomenon of chaotic scattering in solitary wave collisions.

David Hansel

Research Direc­tor, DR-CNRS
Laboratory of Neurophysics and Physiology - UMR 8119 CNRS

David Hansel's Areas of Interest:
Dynam­ics of large neural networks
Mod­els of visual cortex
Mod­els of func­tions and dys­func­tions of the Basal Ganglia
Mech­a­nisms of work­ing memory

Viktor Jirsa

Director, Institut de Neurosciences des Systèmes 
Aix-Marseille Université

Viktor Jirsa is Director of the Inserm Institut de Neurosciences des Systèmes at Aix-Marseille-Université and Director of Research at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) in Marseille, France. Dr. Jirsa received his PhD in 1996 in Theoretical Physics and has since then contributed to the field of Theoretical Neuroscience, in particular through the development of large-scale brain network models based on realistic connectivity, linking network dynamics to brain function and imaging. His work has contributed to a better understanding of the resting state, epilepsy and motor coordination. Dr. Jirsa is the project leader of the neuroinformatics platform The Virtual Brain (www.thevirtualbrain.org) implicating 11 laboratories worldwide. Dr. Jirsa has been awarded several international and national awards for his research including the Prime of Scientific Excellence (CNRS, 2011), the Early Career Distinguished Scholar Award by NASPSPA in 2004 and the Francois Erbsmann Prize in 2001. He has given more than 100 invited lectures, including various keynote addresses and plenary lectures. Dr. Jirsa is Editor-in-chief of the European Physical Journal (EPJ) Nonlinear Biomedical Physics, serves on various Editorial and Scientific Advisory Boards and has published more than 100 scientific articles and book chapters, as well as co-edited several books including the Handbook of Brain Connectivity.

Kenneth McLaughlin 

Professor of Mathematics, Department Head
Department of Mathematics
The University of Arizona

Professor Kenneth McLaughlin's Areas of Research:
Analysis and its Applications
Nonlinear Waves

Richard Mclaughlin

Professor and Chair, Department of Mathematics
Carolina Center for Interdisciplinary Applied Mathematics
University of North Carolina 

Alan Newell

Regents' Professor of Mathematics
University of Arizona

Alan C. Newell, Regents' Professor of Mathematics at the University of Arizona, was born in Dublin on Guy Fawkes day in 1941. He currently lives and enjoys the outdoor life in Tucson, Arizona, with his wife Tish who deserves most of the credit for bringing up two sons, Jamie and Matt, and two daughters, Shane and Pippa, each of whom makes their parents very proud. Summers are spent on the most beautiful coastline on earth in northwest Donegal. 

He received degrees from Trinity College, Dublin in 1962 and from MIT in 1966. He has chaired departments of Mathematics at Clarkson University, at the University of Arizona and at the University of Warwick, England, from 1971 until 2000, a period of almost thirty years. He played his last game of rugby at age 58 and afterwards still managed to lift his pint of Guinness unaided. 

In addition to his research in optics and ocean waves and turbulence and pattern formation, he loves literature and poetry and is an unashamed wannabe story teller who gets great pleasure out of writing yarns and plays with a twist.

John Rinzel

Center for Neural Science/Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences
New York University

John Rinzel’s research is in the biophysical mechanisms and theoretical foundations of dynamic neuronal computation. With a background in engineering (BS: Univ of Florida, 1967) and applied mathematics (PhD: Courant Institute, NYU, 1973) he uses mathematical models to understand how neurons and neural circuits generate and communicate with electrical and chemical signals for physiological function.  John especially relishes developing reduced, but biophysically-based, models that capture a neural system's essence. Before joining the NYU faculty in 1997, he was in the Mathematical Research Branch at the NIH for nearly 25 years, most of that time as Branch Chief.   John directs his group in computational modeling, electrophysiological and psychophysical experiments.  John is a SIAM Fellow (2013) and recipient of the Arthur Winfree Prize from the Society for Mathematical Biology (2015).

Constance Schober

Undergraduate Program Coordinator
Department of Mathematics
University of Central Florida

Michael Shelley 

Lilian and George Lyttle Professor of Applied Mathematics
Professor of Mathematics and Neural Science
New York University

Michael Shelley earned a Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics from the University of Arizona (1985). He was a postdoctoral researcher at Princeton University, and then joined the faculty of mathematics at the University of Chicago. In 1992 he joined the Courant Institute of Mathematics at New York University where he is the George and Lilian Lyttle Professor of Applied Mathematics. He is also a Professor of Neuroscience (NYU) and Professor of Mechanical Engineering (NYU-Poly).
Among other honors, he was a Presidential Young Investigator and the recipient of the Frenkiel Award (APS) and the Julian Cole Lectureship (SIAM). He is a Fellow of both APS and SIAM.

Carl van Vreeswijk

Research Fellow
Neurophysics and Physiology of the Motor System
René Descartes University, CNRS

Carl van Vreeswijk's research focuses on the dynamics of large populations of neurons and on how these dynamical aspects influence computation in the brain. This research can be divided into three general areas:
I. Synchronization. The performance of circuits in the brain can change dramatically when the neurons in these circuits synchronize. Thus it is important to understand the mechanisms that lead to synchronization. In this work we investigate under what conditions populations of interacting neurons, evolve to a state in which there is an appreceable amount of synchrony.

II. Irregular Activity. Isolated neurons react very regularly when they are stimulated, whereas the activity of neurons in an intact brain show a large amount of variability. It is currently not well undestood how this comes about. The significance of this irregularity in neural computation is also unclear. We have developed a theory for the mechanism for this irregularity, and are investigating its functional implications.

III. Computational Circuits. The goal of this work is to study how a more sophisticated dynamical description of neuronal activity changes our understanding of the computations that cortical circuits are thought to perform. We have inverstigated how irregularity affects attractor network and visual column hyper-columns, and are studying a model of the different visual maps in the periform cortex.

Fred Wolf


Dajun Xing

National Key Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience and Learning
Beijing Normal University 

Dr. Dajun Xing’s research interests focus on neural mechanisms of visual perception and brain oscillations by using electrophysiological, anatomical and computational approaches. In particular, his work aims to understand how visual system processes visual information (such as brightness, color, motion) for perception, what is the relationship between brain oscillations and visual perception (and other cognitive functions), how oscillations are generated in the brain, and what oscillations can tell us about the brain. By answering the questions about perception and oscillations, his ultimate goal is to understand the information processing in the most complex nonlinear dynamic system, brain.

Douglas Zhou

Distinguished Research Fellow
Institute of Natural Sciences & Department of Mathematics
Shanghai Jiao Tong University

Douglas Zhou got his B.S. and Ph.D. at Peking University in 2002 and 2007 to 2009, he worked as a Courant Instructor in Cournat Institute of Mathematical Sciences at New York University. From 2010 to the present, he has been working as a distinguished research fellow in the Institute of Natural Sciences and the Department of Mathematics at Shanghai Jiao Tong University. His research interests are mathematical modeling and scientific computing for scientific problems in physical and biological sciences.