Structuring French mathematical research

The Insmi's mission is to structure and coordinate the development of research in the different branches of mathematics. The yielded works find an echoe in today's society and serve as a reference at an international level.

Key figures

Key figures of the institute

The broadening spectrum of the Insmi's mission

The Insmi's predominant role is to support research in mathematics in all its varieties, from the more fundamental research to the interactions with other sciences.

Tackling the great mathematical conjectures

They concern the whole of mathematics and the most mysterious of them are sometimes based on the simplest of statements: these are conjectures, propositions for which there is a consensus that they should be true, but which we have not yet managed to demonstrate or refute. Mathematicians agree that it takes just as much imagination to do this as it does to conceive them, and many new ideas. But what exactly are we talking about? What place do they have in mathematics? And what is the real impact of work on these strange objects?

Taking on the great mathematical conjectures

Computer science, epidemiology, genomics, oncology, geophysics, etc., the interfaces with other sciences are numerous. They are the subject of common subjects where different approaches contribute to mutual enrichment and the advancement of knowledge.

At the same time, the Insmi responds to the growing demands of the economic world in terms of modelling, quantitative analysis and simulation and supports actions to promote mathematics to the general public, particularly to young people.

Software to manage a hospital's workforce in times of crisis...

During the peak of Covid-19, the organisation of medical teams proved crucial. To help them, a team of scientists and doctors is developing a computerised decision support tool to monitor the spread of the epidemic within healthcare services...

Read the article on CNRS Le Journal (in french)

The Insmi's strategic axes

Recruitment and mobility

To carry out its missions, the Insmi recruits a steady flow of young researchers, a significant proportion of whom work at the interface with other disciplines. It encourages researchers' mobility, whether thematic or geographic (domestic and international, or between institutions).

Transverse thematics and international collaborations

The same commitment to openness shows in the setting up of tranverse thematic research networks and in the support of international conference and visiting centres and in interactions with economics and society. The Insmi may lean on the international reputation of its researchers to also strengthen their international collaborations.

Networking the national territory

The above actions convey their own dynamism to the current network of mathematics laboratories, which are networking the national territory in such a way that every important regional centre holds a scientific faculty mostly covering the whole spectrum of mathematics.

National structures supporting research

The Insmi is keen on supporting researches in their work by offering them national structures supporting research in such domains as computing, numerical resources, documentation, edition and dissemination.

Comité national

All institutes of the CNRS discuss their development and strategic choices with the Comité national of the CNRS. The Insmi also resorts to the Conseil scientifique de l'Institut (CSI), which serves as a sounding board and prospective board for the institute. Lastly, the Insmi interacts with section 41 of the CNRS, interdisciplinary commission 51 and other sections of interdisciplinary commissions if needed.

Women in mathematics

The Insmi made parity a priority in terms of human resources, in conjunction with the Mission pour la place des femmes au CNRS and in partnership with the national association Femmes & mathématiques. Indeed, only 20% of women hold positions as a researcher or an academic in mathematics when 30% of PhDs in mathematics were defended by women.

On an international level, the International Mathematical Union (IMU)  is involved in supporting women in mathematics, notably through the Committee for Women in Mathematics (CWM), which organises various actions to promote mathematics towards women and women in mathematics. On an European level, the European Women in Mathematics (EWM) handles this issue.

Website Parity / equality in mathematical research

The Insmi's Parity/Equality in Mathematical Research website provides data on staffing and recruitment, and resources for further research (in french).

At the global level, the International Mathematical Union is committed to working with women mathematicians, in particular through the Committee for Women in Mathematics (CWM), which organises various actions to promote mathematics among women or women in mathematics. At the European level, it is the European Women in Mathematics (EWM) that is active in these areas.

Women at the highest international level

Of the 21 speakers invited to the ICM 2018 World Congress of Mathematics in Rio to give plenary lectures, 4 were women, and 3 of them were linked to the French mathematical school, either because they had been educated in France, or because they had held an academic position there, or both.