Stern / Українська Правда
14 December 2023

Formula for the Future — research centre in Ukraine

Martin Schlak's article Die Zukunftsformel – ein Forschungszentrum in der Ukraine tells the story of the creation of the ICMU from its beginnings to the first event organized by the Centre, "Numbers in the Universe". During the year, the journalist communicated with the Centre's team and accompanied them on several trips to Ukraine.

On December 14, 2023, Ukrainska Pravda published a translation of the article by Martin Schlak with the generous permission of the Stern magazine. The article is illustrated by photographs of Joseph Sywenkyj.

...One day, the conference participants had just returned from a break when a siren wailed. Then mobile phones vibrate. Air alarm! Mathematicians set up their tables, take their backpacks and leave the room in an organized manner. Down the stairs and into the basement. There is a bomb-proof seminar room with tables, chairs and a projector. Sandbags are piled up behind the only window.

...The teacher distributes sheets of paper with eight tasks, the first of which is about topological systems. "Anyone wants to start?" he asks.

While anti-aircraft systems scan the airspace above Kyiv for enemy artillery, while several cruise missiles explode near the southern Ukrainian city of Nikopol and Russian troops advance a few hundred meters near Donetsk, a young person gets up and walks to the chalk board. And they start counting.