The Northern Capital, including St Petersburg University, will be the venue for the meeting of the most influential mathematicians of the world: in 2022 the International Congress of Mathematicians (ICM) will be held in St Petersburg, where the names of the winners of the Fields Medal and other significant awards in this field will be announced.
St Petersburg and Paris fought for the right to take part in the large-scale event, however the prestigious right went to the Northern capital. This decision was taken by the General Assembly of the International Mathematical Union — it meets every four years before the International Congress of Mathematicians, which this time takes place in Rio de Janeiro from 1st to 9th August.
The application of Russia was presented by the co-chairman of the Skolkovo Foundation, former Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Government Arkady Dvorkovich and Head of the St Petersburg University Interdisciplinary Research Laboratory named after Pafnuty Chebyshev, laureate of the Fields Medal Stanislav Smirnov. «It’s a great honour to fight for this right together with our best mathematicians and win for our country!» Arkady Dvorkovich wrote in his Twitter blog. The Professor of St Petersburg University noted that the decision to hold a congress in St Petersburg is a recognition of the importance of Russian mathematics. It will be a great step in strengthening cooperation between Russian experts and their colleagues from all over the world.
The International Congress of Mathematicians is held every four years and is the largest mathematical event in the world. The first such event took place in Zurich in 1897. During the Congress, among other things, the names of the winners of the main mathematical awards are announced: the Fields Medal, the Nevanlinna Prize, the Gauss Prize and the Chern Prize. In the USSR, the International Congress of Mathematicians was held once — in 1966. Nine Russian and Soviet mathematicians became laureates of the Fields Medal.
«Today, mathematical congresses cease to be a place only for the exchange of information. They become centres where mathematicians from all over the world are discovering new directions in the development of science, a place of inspiration for young scientists, a point of attraction for the general public, which gets a unique chance to learn about the fantastic achievements of modern mathematics. We plan to organise a very large-scale event, which in 2022 will grow into the Year of Mathematics in the Russian Federation,» Stanislav Smirnov said.
In St Petersburg University, under the leadership of Stanislav Smirnov, there is a research laboratory named after Pafnuty Chebyshev. It was established in 2010 as a part of the programme of the Government of the Russian Federation for the development of fundamental mathematical research and support of young scientists. Among the famous mathematicians, the graduates of St Petersburg University include: Mikhail Gromov, Leonid Kantorovich, Grigory Perelman, and Stanislav Smirnov.
The Fields Medal laureate noted that it was in St Petersburg that Russian mathematics was born and gained worldwide recognition. Organisers are certain that the infrastructure of the northern capital will enable an event at the highest level to be held; and students of St Petersburg University will have a unique opportunity to hear lectures of the leading scientists of the planet, as well as to take part in organising the congress.
The General Assembly of the International Mathematical Union and the International Congress of Mathematicians will be held in Russia in the summer of 2022. It is to be recalled that before that the country hosted a large-scale event only once — in 1966 in Moscow. As noted by representatives of Russia, the participants of the congress of 2022 will not need Russian visas, and the procedure for entering the country will be similar to the procedure for entry during the recent World Cup. In addition, Russia will provide about 2,300 travel grants for the mathematicians from developing countries, as well as for young scientists.