Springer Nature
19 July 2023

Jean-Pierre Bourguignon on importance of mathematics for rebuilding Ukraine after the war

In January 2023 French mathematician Jean-Pierre Bourguignon, former President of the European Research Council (ERC), accepted the invitation to become the first member of the Supervisory Board of ICMU. In his recent interview to Springer Nature, professor Bourguignon speaks about the role of science and mathematics in particular, in rebuilding Ukraine:

The creation of the ICMU was an initiative of a group of Ukrainian mathematicians which received very broad international support, in particular from a number of eminent colleagues. The aim is to provide conditions conducive to the practice of high-level mathematics in Ukraine, even before the end of the war, by promoting international contacts for Ukrainian mathematicians and welcoming researchers from all over the world for research visits. In our modern societies, it is essential to bring basic research closer to practical applications and to train large numbers of young graduates to an advanced level. This is particularly important for mathematics, whose relevance to the economy has grown with modelling, the massive use of data and artificial intelligence.

After the war, Ukraine will need to rebuild and develop activities in cutting-edge, high added-value fields, which will require a high level of training in mathematics.

– Jean-Pierre Bourguignon, French mathematician, Chair of the Supervisory Board of ICMU

About Jean-Pierre Bourguignon

Jean-Pierre Bourguignon was the President of the European Research Council from 2014 to 2019 and then interim President from July 2020 to August 2021. Specialising in differential geometry and its links with partial differential equations and mathematical physics, he is particularly interested in the Ricci curvature. A former student at the École polytechnique, he joined the CNRS in 1969 and taught at the École polytechnique (1985-2012).

He was Director of the Institut des hautes études scientifiques (1994-2013). He was President of the European Mathematical Society (1995-1998). He is a member of the Academia Europaea, the Spanish Royal Academy of Sciences, the Portuguese Academy of Sciences and the Royal Academy of Sciences of Barcelona.

He has been awarded several Honorary Doctorates: in 2008 by Keio University (Japan), in 2011 by Nankai University (China), in 2018 by the University of Edinburgh (Scotland), in 2021 by the Polytechnic University of Bucharest (Romania) and in 2022 by the University of Warwick (Great Britain) and the University of Primorska (Slovenia). In 2005, he was elected honorary member of the London Mathematical Society, in 2017 of the Deutsche Mathematiker Vereinigung and in 2019 of the Polish Mathematical Society.