ICM 2022 and the Invasion of Ukraine

The news this evening that Russia is sending troops into the Eastern Ukraine and in effect announcing annexation of at least part of the Ukraine carries extremely disturbing implications for the whole world. On a much more minor scale of importance, I don’t see how the IMU has any choice but to cancel this year’s ICM planned for St. Petersburg in July.

Four years ago when the IMU chose St. Petersburg over Paris for the 2022 ICM I commented here on this blog:

It does seem to me though that in these worrisome times, when offered the choice between the world’s most active opponent of liberal democracy and one of the great remaining healthy liberal democracies, the other choice than the one the IMU made would have been the better one…

I agree that in general it’s best to keep mathematics and the ICM out of politics. A question to think about though for those who know the history of the 1930s is that of whether there was some point during the rise of Fascism that one would stop thinking it was a good idea to have the ICM in a Fascist capital. We’re not yet far along the horrific path of the 1930s, but maybe that just means that all should be thinking about what can be done to keep the world from going down that path again.

I sympathize with many who felt that the decision to hold the ICM in Russia was an important way to support Russian mathematicians and a reasonable gamble that Putin would not take his country down the path he now appears to have chosen. But right now it’s looking like that gamble failed and the IMU will have to figure out what to do about its mistake.

I don’t want to host a general political discussion here, especially not with the all too many people I’ve heard from who don’t have a problem with burying liberal democracy. If your comment is not about the ICM, please don’t submit it.

: On February 10 an organization of Ukrainian mathematicians emailed the ICM invited speakers asking them to cancel their talks (and on January 31 had emailed the AMS leadership). I’m curious to know if any responded to this, and if the Russian military invasion will lead to some decisions to cancel talks.

: According to this from @UkrainianMath, the AMS position was recently that “the AMS leadership is closely tracking the situation surrounding the ICM and believes that it is still premature to advocate a boycott”. The “premature” indicates that there is some point at which AMS leadership agrees that the ICM should be canceled. Is the situation of Russian troops occupying the Eastern Ukraine still “premature”, or will the AMS wait for them to take Kiev?

Update: I noticed there’s an AMS-NSF-Simons-ICM Travel Grant program to fund ICM participation by US mathematicians. It was supposed to announce awards this month. Will this program go forward or will the grants be canceled?

Update: Many Russian mathematicians likely feel the same way about this as Edward Frenkel who calls this “a catastrophe for Russian people and all Slavic people”.

Update: The AMS has issued a statement urging the IMU to cancel the ICM and has suspended the AMS-NSF-Simons-ICM travel grant program

Update: There’s a statement out signed by invited ICM speakers. Unfortunately it has been overtaken by events, with little more than a request that the IMU “elaborate and announce contingency plans” in case of war, something that would have made sense a month ago, but not now. Nothing yet that I’m aware of from the IMU or other mathematical societies than the AMS.

Update: The French SMF has a statement calling on the IMU to not hold the ICM in Russia during 2022. In another statement, the London Mathematical Society “strongly recommends that the IMU not hold the ICM in Russia in July 2022.” Also in France, INSMI at the CNRS has this.

Update: There’s a long twitter thread about this here. It includes a contribution from Ian Agol: “As a chair of the topology selection committee, I requested @ICM2022
that the opening ceremony not be presided by a head of state (presumably Putin), but they were not willing to consider this.”
This makes clear the fundamental problem with deciding to hold the ICM in a country ruled by a fascist dictatorship. If you do this, you end up putting the conference under the control of the dictator, because anyone inside the country cannot oppose them. Those outside the country end up having to either go along with the dictator, or cancel the conference, and this is where the IMU is now.

Update: The IMU has issued a (rather empty) statement, saying that “The Executive Committee of the IMU is now assessing the situation”

Update: More statements from national math societies: Italy, Canada, Poland, Lithuania.

Updates: The IMU this morning has on their website:

The IMU Executive Committee is currently assessing the highly disturbing events that are taking place in Ukraine and their implications for the IMU. We will return with a statement as soon as it is available.

There are new statements calling for canceling the ICM from the European Mathematical Society, the Australian Mathematical Society, the Swedish Mathematical Society and others.

Update: Via @UkrainianMath, the latest from the IMU Secretary:

The IMU EC has been sitting in meetings for two days now, discussing the situation and how to respond properly. I ask for your understanding that it is more difficult for a global organization to meet and discuss this issue.

Of particular concern to us is how to find a possible way to carry out a General Assembly and an ICM if possible, but outside Russia. Furthermore, we do not want to cause damage to our Russian colleagues, who have spent endless hours preparing for an ICM.

The IMU webpage does contain a statement that we are working on this, and until we have reached a decision, which will be very soon, this is the best we can do.

Update: The IMU has announced that the ICM will take place as scheduled, but as a free fully virtual conference, not in-person in St. Petersburg. The IMU General Assembly will take place in-person, but at a different location still to be chosen, outside Russia.

Update: The ICM website (icm2022.org) no longer exists, with that address redirected to the IMU site mathunion.org. There had been no activity on the @ICM2022 Twitter account since Feb. 11, but now there’s a statement from four of the Russian mathematicians who had been involved in organizing the ICM:

We condemn the madness, the injustice, and the irreversibility of war that threatens the very existence of humanity. While our losses cannot be compared to the losses and the suffering of millions of people in the Ukraine, we are devastated to see all of our dreams and all of our work of many years ruined. The goals towards which we worked could not have been further from the horror that is happening and those responsible for it. Still, amid the ruins of our dreams, we feel left with an insurmountable debt that may take much longer than the life of our generation to be forgiven.

D. Belyaev, A. Okounkov, J. Pevtsova, S. Smirnov

Update: See here for a letter to the IMU from some mathematicians arguing against the decision to hold the ICM online.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

51 Responses to ICM 2022 and the Invasion of Ukraine

  1. Alessandro Strumia says:

    Can I attend attend a physics conference in Russia, if I cannot attend physics conferences in your liberal democracy nor post to arXiv one scientific publication?

  2. sdf says:

    If the IMU made the St. Petersburg decision even though Crimea was illegally occupied at the time, I rather doubt they feel any kind of moral obligations of this type.

  3. Genghis Cohen says:

    All the young Russian mathematicians I know – and there are many in my city/institution – were quite disgusted with the choice to host the ICM in St. Petersburg. I’m very curious to see what happens now.

  4. Peter Woit says:

    Alessandro Strumia,

    I don’t know what the nature is of problems you have attending US physics conferences.

    It looks like the IMU will choose Philadelphia for the 2026 ICM. Depending on the results of our 2024 election, that might be another one that gets canceled.

  5. anon says:

    I’m expecting to see mass cancellations by speakers unless the situation in Ukraine improves significantly.

    I believe it’s also time to rethink the whole concept. ICM has become so large and costly to organize that few places are able to even think of hosting.

  6. Bo Berndtsson says:

    I can only say that I agree with Peter. It has now become clear that it was a big mistake to let Russia host the coming ICM. I, for one, cannot imagine myself at the inaugural ceremony, applauding representatives of the Putin administration.

  7. Andrzej Daszkiewicz says:

    ICM 1982 in Warsaw, Poland, had been postponed for a year, till 1983 and the suspension of the martial law (which had been imposed in December 1981), so there is a precedent. As a young Ph.D. student in Warsaw at that time I was really happy that the Congress had not been calcelled, but of course the situation now is completely different, Russian mathematicians are not as isolated as we had been behind the iron courtain.

  8. Anonymous says:

    FYI Ukrainians generally consider it offensive to refer to “the” Ukraine

  9. Noah Snyder says:

    I’m glad to see that someone mentioned the 82/83 Warsaw ICM, which is a very interesting bit of history that I didn’t know about until last week when I was looking for any parallels to previous ICMs. If Kyiv were hosting the ICM this year I’d expect we’d see a similar delay as in 82/83, but of course that’s not the current situation. There didn’t really seem to be any previous congresses with anything parallel to the current situation (e.g. Moscow hosted in ’66 not ’68 or ’80, Berkeley hosted in ’86 not ’70 or ’04). At any rate I agree that it pretty clearly needs to be cancelled or moved at this point. Not sure if it’s too late logistically to move it to Paris. It’s all very sad, my entire intellectual genealogy is in the city of St. Petersburg and it’s a wonderful mathematical heritage that deserves to be celebrated.

  10. Will Sawin says:

    It seems the AMS is pulling its representatives, cancelling the grant program, and urging IMU to cancel: https://twitter.com/amermathsoc/status/1496255307697340418

  11. Low Math, Meekly Interacting says:

    Interesting how autocracy and demagoguery can destroy nearly anything. It’s incredibly sad to see Russian intellectuals punished as the cost of denying prestige to a government they themselves likely universally deplore. It’s the obvious thing to do, but what a sickening reversal of the East-West cultural exchange set in motion at the end of the 20th century. What a world we live in.

  12. Peter Woit says:

    With the invasion of the Ukraine, the problem with holding the ICM in Russia goes way beyond its adding to the prestige of the neofascist Russian government, and Russians (mathematicians and non-mathematicians alike) are victims of their leadership in ways that go far beyond not having an international conference there.

    The reason I think it is now inconceivable that the ICM will be held as planned is that, even if you believe in completely divorcing math from politics and not punishing citizens of a country for their government, as a practical matter holding the ICM would be a disaster. The Russian state has now gone to war by sending its military in to occupy Ukraine and no one knows how bloody and ugly this is going to get. With the US and most Western countries every day announcing new actions against Russia and Russian counter-actions sure to come, I can’t see how any sensible person would now think it would be a good idea to book plane tickets and make hotel reservations so as to plan travel into a war zone in July. Optimistically the fighting will take place not with bombing and shooting but with financial, trade and other sanctions, but that likely will be enough to make basic things like flying to St. Petersburg soon impossible.

  13. MT says:

    “I can’t see how any sensible person would now think it would be a good idea to book plane tickets and make hotel reservations so as to plan travel into a war zone in July.”

    Not only is this correct, but you wouldn’t want to book plane tickets for any event that would require entering Ukranian airspace. People fail to realize how close to WWIII things are getting.

  14. Peter Woit says:

    Yes, although I’m assuming airlines are being appropriately cautious now, well aware of what happened in 2014 (the Russians shot down a commercial airliner flying over Eastern Ukraine, killing all aboard).

    As this continues, even if a Westerner could get an airline to fly them into St. Petersburg, there’s also the other war-zone problem of ending up interned as a prisoner of war. Until recently one could have made the case that Putin would not imprison and hold hostage citizens of Western countries since that would hurt his relations with those countries, but that’s no longer a very convincing argument.

  15. Edward says:

    I am surprised none of the comments here are arguing against relocating the ICM. Does the ICM really want to become involved in the sordid U.S. regime change operation in Ukraine? The U.S. spent $6 billion on regime change efforts in Ukraine, culminating in the 2014 coup which overthrew the democratically elected president of Ukraine. This essentially led to a civil war which has wrecked the country. The anti-Russian faction(including Nazis) seized power in Kiev and the ethnic Russians in the West revolted. If the ICM wants to boycott a country what about America? The list of American crimes is long, starting with the CIA organized coups against the democratically elected governments of Guatemala, Iran, Indonesia, and Chile. More recently, there are the genocidal sanctions against Iraq, which killed hundreds of thousands of people, followed by an invasion which destroyed the country. America has wrecked Libya, Syria, Yemen, and Ukraine and is trying to replace the democratically elected government of Venezuela with U.S.-appointed Juan Guido. Who gets to decide which countries are committing crimes and get boycotted? Will the same standards apply to every country?

    I think it is a bit rich to call Mr. Putin a “neo-fascist”. He is a very popular democratically elected politician with an approval rating above 60%, much higher then our president or Congress. He has done an excellent job rebuilding Russia after the disastrous Yeltsin years. There has been an extreme propaganda campaign against Russia by the West for years, and I hope the ICM does’t become part of this effort. After the Iraq WMD hoax, Americans should be more careful about taking U.S. government and media accusations at face value.

  16. Peter Woit says:

    Please do not respond to the comment by “Edward”. I’ve been deleting things like this as they come in, thought it might be a good idea to leave one so that people have an idea what the pro-Russian propaganda campaign that has been going on looks like.

  17. Andrzej Daszkiewicz says:

    There is a similar statement calling IMU to not organize ICM in July in St. Petersburg issued by the Polish Mathematical Society (PTM), available in Polish here:

  18. Yiannis Sakellaridis says:

    The commentary about the statement by ICM speakers (“a month ago”) is unfair. As of last weekend, European leaders were shuttling between Kyiv and Moscow and projecting optimism that diplomacy would prevail. In any case, the statement sets some standards – that even the threat of war is incompatible with the spirit of unity that the ICM should represents – whose implication for today’s situation is completely clear. The statement has now been signed by more than half of the invited speakers.

  19. Peter Woit says:

    Yiannis Sakellaridis,
    While I’m sympathetic with the difficulty of organizing a statement like this, I’m afraid I have to disagree. The Russian military buildup and threats to the Ukraine have been going on for months, and those months were the time for a call to the IMU to announce that a Ukraine invasion would imply cancellation of the ICM and to make contingency plans.

    The IMU has had months now to make a contingency plan about what it would do in case of an all-too likely Ukraine invasion by Russia. This week is not the time for calls for contingency plans but for implementing them.

  20. Robert Owczarek says:

    I think ICM has to be canceled, stressing the role of the Putin’s regime in nullifying its legitimacy for having such privilege. I am afraid though that IMU is partially connected with Russia and Putin’s supporters. How otherwise the ICM would land in St. Petersburg in the first place? And make no mistake, Putin, when he crossed this Rubicon, will not stop there. All Europe is now in danger, and in effect the world. Putin must be stopped.

  21. Peter Woit says:

    Robert Owczarek,
    I don’t know what the IMU’s rules are for making a decision about this. The IMU executive committee is here
    its ICM structure committee is here
    and the ICM executive organizing committee is here

    The ICM executive organizing committee is entirely Russian and I suspect any of them who agreed with canceling the ICM would put themselves personally in grave danger.

    The other IMU committees are mostly non-Russian and I know of no reason they should not be agreeing on the obviously necessary action of canceling the conference.

    As I wrote in my comment to Yiannis Sakellaridis, it has been clear for quite a while that this might happen. These IMU committees have already had a lot of time to try to decide what they would do in the case of a Ukraine invasion, so unclear why we’re not hearing something publicly from them.

  22. Zee says:

    The IMU has the responsibility to cancel the ICM for the sake of the organizers and Russian mathematicians.

  23. Sam Hopkins says:

    Could the ICM take place entirely online? I was at the ICM in Rio in 2018 and it was a very enjoyable experience, but the experience of attending many remote conferences during Covid has made me rethink the benefit of traveling long distances for in person conferences, not to mention in terms of money and CO2 emissions it feels frankly wasteful.

  24. Peter Woit says:

    Sam Hopkins,
    That’s one possibility, and it may be what happens.
    There’s no way to change the venue of a 5000 attendee-scale conference like this on the timescale of a few months, but it might be possible to organize a hybrid conference with a much smaller in-person component.
    Possibly the reason for no statement from the IMU is that they are trying to decided about this.

  25. Noah Snyder says:

    Yes, there’s no way they can logistically hold a normal ICM in person at another location this summer. The natural thing is to move it and hold it next summer, but it’s not even clear to me whether you can reschedule an event of this size on “only” one year’s notice. It’s going to be genuinely difficult for the IMU to figure out what options they have. Hopefully they didn’t just start working on contingency plans this week. It may end up needing to get rescheduled for next summer and also shrunk in some way.

  26. Engineer says:

    Looks like the football community is set to deal with a similar situation as the UEFA are set to strip Saint Petersburg of the hosting rights for 2022 Champions League final. It would be sad if they can act while the IMU can’t.

  27. Johan Richter says:

    The tweet by Ian Agol has been deleted.

  28. mathlog says:

    It would be interesting to know what Andrei Okounkov and Stanislav Smirnov will say on the matter. They are members of the organizing committee (and kind of its face, see https://icm2022.org/blog/interview-with-andrei-okounkov-and-stanislav-smirnov ) and are both not based in Russia.

  29. Peter Woit says:

    I have no knowledge specifically of what Okounkov or Smirnov think about this, but I’m guessing that almost all the Russian mathematicians associated with organizing the ICM feel much the same: the Ukraine invasion is a terrible disaster and the conference can’t take place in July, but saying this publicly would carry severe implications for their personal safety so they’re not going to do so.

  30. Lukasz says:

    As a supplement to the messages of Andrzej Daszkiewicz and Noah Snyder, I would like to add here that there on the website https://mathshistory.st-andrews.ac.uk/ICM/ICM_Warsaw_1983/ , is placed a story of ICM 1983.

    PS. My Father was enjoying at that time that there were some chances that Alfred Tarski would attend this Congress. He wanted to discuss with Tarski on some problem (in mathematical logic), solved by my Father. However, unfortunately, Tarski was absent there. He died about 2 months after ICM 1983.

  31. The Australian Mathematical Society has announced they don’t want the IMU to proceed with holding the Congress in St Petersburg: https://austms.org.au/statement-on-icm-2022/

  32. Gil Kalai says:

    Indeed these are very sad days.

    Regarding the ICM. It is not clear if the war in Europe will enable any form of ICM in 2022, but it seems pretty clear that it will not take place in St Petersburg as planned.
    Here are some thoughts about a possible way to have a congress if the conditions will make it possible.

    First a remark: One nice thing about Rio-ICM2018 was that all invited, public, plenary lectures and also the panels were videotaped (in a very good quality) which provided (in addition to the traditional Proceeding) a very valuable resource. Now, if in additional to good quality videotaping, the lectures are also broadcast then we can consider a hybrid structure of many venues (10-15) where speakers (mostly) will not speak from their homes but will be gathered to several well-videotaped sub-conferences with a live audience. (Still some speakers may speak from their own institutions (perhaps also with an audience) and some speakers may choose to record their lectures in advance. 

    Mathematicians could have some possibilities for talks that interest them: to attend (if it is nearby), or to listen to the broadcast in real time, or to watch the video later.

    Making a viable program with this format could be an interesting combinatorial problem (suitable for the young minds). Probably the early afternoon in Europe could be a good time for plenary talks. We may need to make the ICM a few days longer.
    For such a plan we can choose 10-15 venues around the world, with some local activities as well in addition to giving and watching ICM lectures.  

    One more idea. Perhaps we can give all speakers of all types (except, of course the prize winners) an opportunity to post a 15-20 minute introductory video that will be posted around May of the year in the ICM site. (This can be extended also to contributed talks/abstracts and to lectures in satellite conferences, and to other participants.) While only a few percent of people will watch the videos in advance this can still be very helpful.(I tried myself to implement this idea with my live lectures in the pandemic times.)

    Maybe some of the social events could become distributed as well.

    Actually I made few of these remarks/suggestions in 2019 before the pandemic and certainly in no connections with the terrible war here: https://terrytao.wordpress.com/2019/02/05/request-for-comments-from-the-icm-structure-committee/#comment-512332

  33. Arend Bayer says:

    I want to point out that the letter signed by ICM speakers (I am one of them) states that the ICM cannot be held while the organising country is *threatening* a war against its neighbour, and that it cannot be held in the context of a potential war.
    I think the implication for the current situation is clear.

    On a more important note, I am impressed by the courage of the >370 signatories of this letter by Russian scientists against the war: https://trv–science-ru.translate.goog/2022/02/we-are-against-war/?_x_tr_sl=auto&_x_tr_tl=en&_x_tr_hl=en&_x_tr_pto=wapp

  34. Richard Séguin says:

    Major sports communities have been acting quickly and making decisions. The International Olympic Committee is calling for all sporting federations to cancel or relocate events in Russia in addition to banning Russian and Belarusian flags and anthems at sporting events, Formula One has cancelled the Russian Grand Prix at Sochi, the football event at St Petersburg (Champions League Final) has been moved to France, and important ski events scheduled for Russia have been cancelled or moved.

    I do understand the immense difficulties of actually planning the move of a large meeting like this, but I hope they are not waiting to figure out if they can in fact do this before deciding whether or not to cancel St Petersburg. A meeting at St Petersburg is just simply out of the question. They should cancel now and then try to figure out if they could move the meeting. If they finally decide that there isn’t enough time to plan a move, then the meeting will have to be sacrificed this year, or they could consider virtual options — which we’ve become quite skilled at in the past two years — as discussed by Gil Kalai above.

  35. Peter Woit says:

    Arend Bayer,
    I understand the difficulty of drafting something that most speakers would agree on, but I still think that the formulation chosen would have been very appropriate a month ago, but became inappropriate on Monday when the invasion started. I realize this is unfair, but as written the letter indicated no problem with a July ICM in Russia if the Ukrainians had been defeated and “peace” imposed on them by that time.

    And I agree completely about the courage of Russians willing to publicly raise their voices against the war.

  36. Anon42 says:

    One purely symbolic but low effort gesture some readers of this blog could make to support Ukrainian civil society would be submitting their best work to the journal Symmetry, Integrability and Geometry: Methods and Applications (SIGMA, https://www.emis.de/journals/SIGMA/). This is a high quality but not super prestigious mathematical physics journal run by volunteers from the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine that is free for readers, free for authors, and an arxiv overlay. Symbolism aside, this is probably how Western journals should have set up their publishing models in any case. Some major caveats…I have no idea whether the editors would support this since it’s certainly possible they’re unable to deal with reviewing articles given the more pressing matters at hand. I also have no clue about their politics.

  37. Dylan Thurston says:

    The letter text was finalized on Sunday, before the invasion started in any sense.

  38. Greg_S says:

    Here’s what’s not clear to me: While the IMU is dragging its feet, have any of the other mathematics societies mentioned in the updates called on their members to boycott the meeting, and have any individual mathematicians announced their refusal to attend?

  39. an American mathematician says:

    > Update: Many Russian mathematicians likely feel the same way about this as Edward Frenkel who calls this “a catastrophe for Russian people and all Slavic people”.

    > I have no knowledge specifically of what Okounkov or Smirnov think about this, but I’m guessing that almost all the Russian mathematicians associated with organizing the ICM feel much the same: the Ukraine invasion is a terrible disaster and the conference can’t take place in July, but saying this publicly would carry severe implications for their personal safety so they’re not going to do so.

    I’m not so sure that this is actually true, Peter. In fact, I suspect that the opposite may very well be true. I think that many Russian mathematicians would still like the ICM to take place in Petersburg, and would be upset if it were canceled, moved, or boycotted. The ones that work in the West would probably be hesitant to express such an opinion publicly, due to its sensitive political nature.

    I hear that support for the “special military operation”/”invasion” in the/the Ukraine is very high among the ethnic Russian general population, and I see no reason why mathematicians would be any different. As an American who has spent a semester in Petersburg, I can tell you that nationalism is strong, even among the scientific intelligentsia in post-Soviet Russia.

    Shafarevich, for example, never left Russia, despite the mass exodus of former Soviet mathematicians for the West in the 90s. His political views can perhaps be described as Russian Orthodox chauvinism, and his writings have been criticized in the West as anti-Semitic. I still remember the efforts of American mathematicians in the 90s to expel him as a member of the NAS. He eventually staged his own boycott of sorts by resigning in protest against the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq. Shafarevich was a particularly vocal case, but my guess is that he was not the only one to hold such views, even if you include the younger generations of Russian mathematicians.

    Frenkel is, of course, a great mathematician, but I wonder whether he really speaks for all Russian mathematicians. I often hear stories of how Jewish and other minorities felt oppressed in Soviet Russia (Frenkel was apparently not admitted to Moscow State for political reasons).

    I don’t know what Okounkov or Smirnov think of the statements from other national math societies either. mathlog says that neither is based in Russia, but I believe that Smirnov has a position at St. Petersburg State, and that Okounkov has a position at the Higher School of Economics, as does Bogomolov. In fact, in the interview that mathlog linked to, Smirnov says, “We also support the request not to sacrifice mathematics in general and the activities of the IMU in particular to boycotts and other political acts.” Okounkov is also representing Russia on the IMU EC as a member-at-large. I suppose we will see what happens.

  40. Peter Woit says:

    an American mathematician,
    My experience may be limited, but from what I’ve seen Russian mathematician fans of Putin and the attack on Ukraine are about as rare as American mathematician fans of Trump and the attack on the Capitol.

    Okounkov definitely is US-based, until recently at Columbia (on leave this year), this fall I hear at Berkeley. He has been one of the main organizers of the 2022 ICM, and I can only imagine how difficult this situation is for him and his hopes for this event.

  41. Peter Woit says:

    At this point I think people see no need to call for a boycott of something that isn’t going to happen.

  42. jsm says:

    February 26, 2022. The IMU continues to support Putin’s Russia with its website advertising: “The International Congress of Mathematicians (ICM) will take place in Saint Petersburg, Russia, between 6–14 July 2022.”

  43. Sam Hopkins says:

    The prominent Russian mathematician Anatoly Vershik (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anatoly_Vershik), who is in fact based in St. Petersburg, has called for the cancellation of ICM 2022: https://twitter.com/SocMathFr/status/1497204027163037700.

  44. Sam Hopkins says:

    Huge update! The ICM will take place fully online, at the same time as scheduled: https://www.mathunion.org/fileadmin/IMU/ICM2022/ICM_2022_statement.pdf.

  45. Sam Hopkins says:

    Sorry to keep spamming comments, but another thing your readers might be interested in is that Terry Tao, who is the chair of the ICM Structure Committee, is inviting discussion of how best to use the virtual format of the ICM on his blog at https://terrytao.wordpress.com/2022/02/26/the-international-congress-of-mathematicians-icm-2022-will-now-be-fully-virtual-how-best-to-utilise-this-format/. (Note that he wants to limit discussion to the *format* of the ICM, and not the surrounding politics.)

  46. a Russian mathematician says:

    I’d like to second an American mathematician. There are Russian mathematicians of this type. Alex Bondal still openly defends the invasion in his public Facebook posts. There are others like him, who are less obnoxious.

  47. Will Sawin says:

    A letter from (currently) 351 Russian mathematicians bravely speaking out against the invasion: https://trv-science.ru/2022/02/mathematicians-against-war/

  48. Reply to Anon42:
    We greatly appreciate your support during these difficult times. Although we stay in Kyiv, everything is still more or less OK with all the members of the SIGMA team. Despite the Russian aggression, we continue to work on SIGMA (https://www.emis.de/journals/SIGMA/) and the submitted articles are processed without substantial delays.

  49. anon says:

    The latest IMU circular tells that the General Assembly and the Prize Ceremony will be held in Helsinki.

Comments are closed.