Euromath Network and Services for the New Independent States


Background and History

Project organization and Who is Who

Objectives and deliverables

Project activities and results



During the 4 years of EmNet/fSU, a modern, internationally oriented research infrastructure based on computing and computer networking will be established on fSU territory. This aims, in the first place, at the mathematically oriented sciences. The plans have been prepared through international collaboration since 1988. Only now can they be realized. Considering the strength of mathematical research in all parts of Europe, the expected synergy effect will be pronounced.

The declaration concerns the 15 months long first phase which is technology oriented with transfer of know-how and with limited but central implementations of services within communication, document handling, information, databases, directories, and publishing. There are 8 partners from fSU. An aggressive expansion to cover some 70-120 partners from fSU in a second phase will be planned.

Services will be especially adapted to the fSU situation (varying from region to region). The project will strive to achieve an economies of scale by exploiting the newest state-of-the-art technology. Special care will be given to create centres and services which can generate a modest income immediately and a more substantial income at the medium and long range (e.g. related to collaboration with industry). This and other aspects of the project are specifically aimed at preventing a further brain drain in the fSU.

Overall rationale of project

The mathematical sciences occupy a strong position in fSU. Until recently, they were not technology dependent. However, with the advent of modern information technology, it is becoming a prerequisit for all scientists to have access to a research infrastructure based on computers and networking. Also, advanced computing is becoming an integral part of many branches of mathematics and is destined to have a significant impact on the conduct of mathematical research itself.

The situation represents a challange as well as an opportunity. By introducing modern technology in fSU it will, in principle, be possible to maintain a high scientific level and to prevent further brain drain.

It is realized, that though the project proposed in this Declaration of Intent addresses the critical issues indicated above in a well thought out and focused way, the demand is huge and even if successfull, our project can only be seen as a beginning which will require continued funding and continued comprehensive work and collaboration by the European scientific community. Emphasis must be placed on the engagement and contributions by the scientists in the States of the fSU themselves.

We have deliberately split our project into two phases. The first, and shorter phase, is more centralized and technology oriented. During this phase, limited end-user oriented services will be developed. Therefore, the results of the first phase will be of value in themselves. Though not formally part of the proposal presented for funding in this Declaration of Intent, we point out that the planned second phase of our project is ambitious in that it will involve some 70-120 research centres in fSU. The necessary planning for this pronounced extension will take place during the first phase.

During both phases of EmNet/fSU, centres of expertise of lasting value will be created. The centres will vary greatly in size and specific objectives. However, they will all contain a common kernel of know-how and services which will form part of a pan-European network. Each centre will be placed as an integral part of an active researh environment and will choose its specific areas of interest and activity in accordance with the basis of expertise and interest at the research organization in question. In this way it is hoped to create a base for collaboration with industry and others which will generate an income on a running basis.

The activities will be coordinated with similar activities in other parts of Europe.

Project definition and goals

Scientific area

Mathematics and Information Technology. Research Infrastructure. The proposal is also relevant for other sciences, in particular engineering and physics.

Specific objectives

These may be listed as follows:

General background

EmNet - Concepts and plans
A historical short overview of Euromath activity
It all began in 1983 during the international Congress of Mathematicians in Warsaw where the activities of AMS in USA gave inspiration for similar actions in Europe but adapted to the inhomogeneity of Europe with different working habits, several alphabets etc. The overall objectives was to provide a modern research infrastructure for mathemacians based on computers and software in accordance with the newest technology. This overall idea, adapted according to progress of technology, e.g. recently with much more focus on networking and network services, is the EUROMATH IDEA.
In 1986, a Data Base Committee was set up under European Mathematical Council (now dissolved but transformed to EMS, the European Mathematical Society) to explore the possibilities for implementing the Euromath ideas. An application was submitted to EEC for financial support of a the Euromath Project.
In 1987 the pan-European organization European Mathematical Trust (EMT) was created to realize the Euromath ideas and, more specifically, to coordinate the activities under the Euromath Project approved at that time for support by the EEC.
The Euromath Project (1987-1994) concentrated on building a system capable of producing and exchanging mathematical documents in a form which appeals to mathematicians. Furthermore, connections to databases, computer algebra systems and other tools have been included in the concept, though not all fully implemented. In 1992 a development version of the Euromath System (Em v.o) was released by EMT. The first real version (Em v.1) was released in 1994. Work with the Euromath System continues and new releases are planned.
At the outset, the Euromath activity was limited to Western Europe. However, there had been extensive contacts with mathematicians from several Central-and Eastern European countries, and this was supplyed in 1988 with contacts to the Russian Academy of Sciences.
In 1990 the Danish Goverment gave a five year grant for establishment and operation of the Euromath Center (EmC) in Copenhagen, the main internationally oriented tasks of which were to carry out development, write user-documentation and provide user support for the Euromath System and its subscribers. Recently, however, Euromath user support has been transferred to the Comenius University in Bratislava.
EMT, EmC and other organizations are engaged in activity in Eastern Europe, collected under the two EmNet projects (Euromath Network and Services). This builds also on previous TEMPUS sponsored projects. The scope is to transfer and to implement the overall Euromath idea in the countries concerned with a focus on the creation of services and centres. There are at present two projects running, one in Central- and Eastern Europe with 15 partners from the Baltic States, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Humgary, Bulgaria and Albania, and one with 62 partners in Bellarus, Russia, Ukraine, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Kazakstan.

Start Up

Declaration of Intent -
CALL for INTAS - general information for submission
Submitted Declaration of Intent
Special information to eventual Phase II partners from NIS

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