Mathematics Research Communities

Mathematics Research Communities - 2020

MRC participantsThe American Mathematical Society (AMS) invites early-career mathematicians—those who are close to finishing their doctorates or have recently finished—to become part of the Mathematics Research Communities, a professional development program in which the participants develop collaborative research skills, build a network focused in an active research domain, and receive mentoring from leaders in that area.
Supported by NSF, the AMS, and other sources, the program includes:

  • Intensive one-week, hands-on summer research conferences for each topic
  • Guidance in career building
  • Special Sessions at the AMS-MAA Joint Mathematics Meetings (JMM) in January 2021
  • Opportunities for follow-up small-group collaborations
  • Longer-term opportunities for collaboration and community building among the participants

Over time, each participant is expected to provide feedback regarding career development and the impact of the MRC program.

For each NSF-supported participant, the MRC program provides support for travel to the summer conference site and all accommodations and meals there, support for travel to the 2021 JMM, and support for follow-up collaboration travel during the year following the summer conferences. See below for details.

Learn more about the application process.

2020 MRC Summer Conferences

MRC participantsThe summer conferences are hosted at a retreat-style site that is conducive to participant interactions and provides opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. For the past two years, they have been held at the Whispering Pines Conference Center in West Greenwich, Rhode Island, and AMS anticipates a return to this site in 2020. Operated by the University of Rhode Island, this center provides a scenic, tranquil New England setting ideal to the collaborative research activities of the MRC program.

Week 1a: May 31 – June 6, 2020
Dynamics of Infectious Diseases: Ecological Models Across Multiple Scales
Julie Blackwood, Williams College; Lauren Childs, Virginia Tech; Suzanne Lenhart, University of Tennessee, Knoxville; Olivia Prosper, University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Week 1b: May 31 – June 6, 2020
Combinatorial Applications of Computational Geometry and Algebraic Topology
Stephen Melczer,
University of Pennsylvania; Marni Mishna, Simon Fraser University; Robin Pemantle, University of Pennsylvania

Week 2a: June 7 – 13, 2020
Analysis in Metric Spaces
Mario Bonk, University of California at Los Angeles; Luca Capogna, Worcester Polytechnic Institute; Piotr Hajlasz, University of Pittsburgh; Nageswari Shanmugalingam, University of Cincinnati; Jeremy Tyson, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Week 2b: June 7 – 13, 2020
New Problems in Several Complex Variables
Dusty Grundmeier, Harvard University; Loredana Lanzani, Syracuse University; Yunus Zeytuncu, University of Michigan–Dearborn

Week 3: June 14 – 20, 2020
Finding Needles in Haystacks: Approaches to Inverse Problems using Combinatorics and Linear Algebra
Shaun Fallat, University of Regina; H. Tracy Hall, NewVistas LLC; Leslie Hogben, Iowa State University and the American Institute of Mathematics; Bryan Shader, University of Wyoming; Michael Young, Iowa State University


At the conference site, two participants share a room with two beds and a private bathroom. If you have medical or personal considerations that make an alternative arrangement more appropriate, please contact us to see what accommodations may be possible.


Buffet-style meals presenting a wide variety of options are provided by the Whispering Pines culinary staff. Dietary restrictions can be accommodated.

Social Event

There will be a reception at the beginning of the conference, morning and afternoon breaks with light refreshments throughout the week, and a banquet on Friday evening. Each evening a hospitality suite provides refreshments and opportunities for informal conversation.

JMM Special Sessions

The program of the 2021 Joint Mathematics Meetings in Washington, DC will include MRC Special Sessions on each of the summer conference topics. These and other activities at the national meeting provide opportunities for the participants to deepen connections with their topic, engage with their collaborative research peers and mentors, and cultivate their professional network. The MRC program provides support for participants to travel to JMM, and the amount of this support will be announced in the fall of 2020.

Follow-up Collaborations

MRC participantsThrough the NSF grant and the AMS, a limited number of grants will be available to support small-group collaboration travel during the year following the summer conference. The objective is to foster a continuation or completion of work begun at the conference site. An announcement will be made in late summer 2020 to participants regarding collaboration travel proposals.

Application Process

Applicants should be ready to engage in collaborative research and should be “early career”—either expecting to earn a PhD within two years or having completed a PhD within five years of the date of the summer conference. Exceptions to this limit on the career stage of an applicant may be made on a case-by-case basis. The MRC program is open to individuals who are US citizens as well as to those who are affiliated with US institutions and companies/organizations. A few international participants may be accepted. Depending on space and other factors, a small number of self-funded participants may be admitted. Individuals who have once previously been an MRC participant will be considered for admission, and their applications must include a rationale for repeating. Please note that individuals cannot participate in the MRC program more than twice.  Applications from individuals who have twice been MRC participants will not be considered.

We seek individuals who will both contribute to and benefit from the MRC experience, and our goal is to create a collaborative research community that is vibrant, productive, and diverse. We welcome applicants from academic institutions of all types, as well as from private industry and government laboratories and agencies. Women and under-represented minorities are especially encouraged to apply.

All participants are expected to be active in the full array of MRC activities—the summer conference, special sessions at the Joint Mathematics Meetings, and follow-up collaborations.

Applications are being accepted until the deadline of 11:59 p.m., February 15, 2020.

Contact Information

For further information, please contact the