Colloquium Series 2023-2024

This colloquium is sponsored by the Department of Mathematics & Statistics
For more information, contact the colloquium chair, Dr. Michael Kerckhove.



April 15 at 4:30 PM

Location: TBA

Speakers: Mathematics Honors Students Presentations

Past Events

November 6 at 1:30 PM

Location: Jepson Faculty Lounge on the first floor of Jepson Hall

Speaker: M. Saif Mehkari, Associate Professor of Economics and Paul Clikeman Teaching Fellow, University of Richmond

Title: Converting Local Consumption Responses to an Aggregate Fiscal Multiplier

Abstract: Economists use mathematics in many different ways. In this colloquium I will discuss one of my recently accepted papers on calculating the aggregate fiscal multiplier. Using data, we estimate that a $1 increase in county-level government spending increases local non-durable consumer spending by $0.29. The starting point for the talk will be the intuition (economic, mathematical, and practical) for our interest in the multiplier. We then translate this to an aggregate multiplier using a Heterogeneous Agent New Keynesian model. We further use this calibrated mathematical model to understand the mechanisms that link a local multiplier to an aggregate multiplier. Through the discussion of this paper and its results I will explain the process economists use to perform such calculations and highlight how mathematics acts as a foundation for economic analysis. The paper uses techniques and ideas from statistics, calculus, differential equations, and numerical analysis.

October 9 at 1:30 PM

Speaker: Allison Moore, Assistant Professor of Mathematics, Virginia Commonwealth University

Title: Knotted Graphs and Graphs of Knots: How Combinatorics and Knot Theory Inform Each Other

Abstract: A knot is an embedding of a circle in a three-dimensional space, up to a type of deformation called ‘ambient isotopy.’ Informally, we can think of a knot as being a closed, flexible loop made out of stretchy rubber cord. Knot theory is a part of geometry and topology, but it enjoys connections to many other branches of math including algebra, analysis, and combinatorics; knot theory even provides a framework for mathematical modeling in molecular biology!

In this talk, we’ll investigate how concepts from graph theory help us to better understand the complexity of knots and to devise tools to calculate their properties. I’ll emphasize several research projects that were joint work with the following VCU students: Matthew Elpers, Christopher Flippen, Rayan Ibrahim, Essak Seddiq, and Anna Shaw.

September 5 at 4:30 PM

Student Summer Research Presentations

Non-abelian Partial Difference Sets
Student Researchers: Aiden Hills, Ziqi Meng, Yoonha Nam
Mentor: Dr. James Davis

Modeling the Opioid Epidemic: Medicated vs. Non-medicated Treatment
Students: Muskan Agarwal, Maniha Agram, Gabe Greenberg
Mentor: Dr. Joanna Wares

Parallel Algorithms for High-Dimensional Clustering
Student: Andrew Brady
Special Program: Research Experience for Undergraduates in Combinatorics, Algorithms, and AI for Real Problems (REU-CAAR)
Mentor: Dr. Laxman Dhulipala, University of Maryland, College Park