Euromath Network and Services for the New Independent States,
Phase II

Project INTAS-IA-03

Phase II (EmNet/NIS/II)

Work Programme

Devised 1994/96.

The contract lasts 36 months, from June 01,1995 until May 31,1998.


The objectives of the project are
This project demands an open attitude af all its participants. The project will, in conformity with this approach, act itself in a non-discriminatory way towards third parties operating in the academic or educational sector and having similar aims as this project.


EmNet aims at facilitating collaborative work and the open exange of ideas within the mathematical community by means of modern computing and networking techniques. EmNet/NIS is a part of EmNet and pays specific attention to the needs and problems in the NIS. The project is not directly oriented towards mathematical research work, but will, in the medium and longer term significantky contribute to improving the NIS research infrastructure. The system will be open for institutes, universities, etc. but may also be available for industrial companies.

During the first phase of the project, a prototype of an information system and a base for electronic publishing will be created.


The current level of equipment at NIS sites can be descrived with 3 levels: Due to limitation dictated by available financial resources, the project may have to focus on needs of the key-regional centres as far as equipment is concerned. However, as part of the project, extra sources, within as well as outside the NIS countries will be sought to support the further acquisition of equipment.

The project is not networking activity and is therefore dependent on regional networking activity. Equipment for basic networking willnot be provided within the framework of the project.

Several activities are distinguished within the project.

Networking Environment.
One of the main topics of the project is to provide or upgrade the networking environment within and between the sites. At the sites i the NIS, and financed by the participants, the capabilities will provide a description of the current situation and future plans.

EmNet Primer.
The EmNet Primer is a concept under evaluation. It is a volatile hypertext based distributed document which will assist all participants in setting up proper services. It will be accessible to all participants through the world-wide-web.

Information services.
A recognised problem is the quality of the information obtainable over the net. Based on previous work and based on contacts with organisations in the NIS, the project will provide information, including
- a list of contents of all mathematical publications (journals as well as monographs and proseedings from in all of the NIS, in both Russian and English);
- local information provided by all participants in the NIS, including participant profiles, announcement of meetings, abstracts or full texts of various loocal publications, including pre-prints);
- an overview of current mathematical activities in the NIS
It is expected that the EMIR system, developed by the Euromath Center will be adapted to the needs of the NIS partners and installed at all, or allmost all, premises of the NIS partners. Through EMIR, directory services are also provided.

Directory services.
Two directories will be provided as a result of the project:
- a directory of mathematicians in the NIS and
- a directory of mathematical organisations.
Both directories will be important for the daily work of mathematicians as well as in researching possible services that may be available to external parties.

Electronic publishing.
With regard to electronic publishing, two aspects will be considered: providing the technical and organisational base and the actual electronic publishing. The publishing activity will be divided into less formal publishing (pre-prints, lecture notes) and formal publishing of journals.The project will contribute to a sensible structure, maintaining the high quality and enhance the possibilities when compared with traditional publications (e.g. by hypertext techniques).

User support
Often the ordinary, less tecnically minded user does not have access to the help needed in order to obtain maximal benefit from the computer and networking services available. And often the situation may be much improved by simple means such as the writing of manuals or the production of reference sheets pertaining to the various services. The project will address the problems using modern guidelines and techniques. The issue is also connected with the production of the EmNet Primer.

Creation of Centres
Several centres, ideally one at each site of the partners in the NIS, will be established. They will provide the following support and services:
- to be source of information,
- to provide services, such as electronic access to pre-prints (abstracts, possible full text) and access to other relevant information,
- to adapt to common guidelines of usage (non-hacking, polite behaviour),
- to prepare for selling the build-up knowledge and service to non-university customers,
- to keep track of the equipment received (must not be removed and sold) and ensure that piracy (illegal copying of software) does not take place.

The project will strive for a mobility plan. Mobility outside of NIS can be divided into shorter and longer stays. Mobility sites include CAM (Helsinki), EmC (Copenhagen) and universities in Torun, Prague, Budapest, Sophia, Bratislava and Canterbury (UK).

Press releases will be sent out at appropriate times. A presentation of the project, in collaboration with other EmNet projects, will be made at the second European Congress of Mathematicians (Budapest, August 1996).

Organisation of project

62 organisations in the NIS are listed as participants. They are divided into 9 regions:
  1. Moscow region (Russia) with 14 organisations,
  2. St.Petersburg and North-West region (Russia) with 7 organisations,
  3. Central Russia with 11 organisations,
  4. Ural region (Russia) with 5 organisations,
  5. Siberia and Far Eastern region (Russia)with 8 organisations,
  6. Ukraine with 9 organisations,
  7. Trans Caucasian countries with 6 organisations,
  8. Belarus with 1 organisation,
  9. Kazakhstan with 1 organisation.
The map of NIS regions distribution:

The following bodies have been or will be formed to manage, administer and execute the activities within the project:
  • the Co-ordinater,
  • the Board,
  • the Regional Committees,
  • the Council
  • the Technical Co-ordinaters,
  • the Technical Committees.
  • A guiding principle for the bodies created is that electronic communication will be widely used to minimise the cost of meetings. In view of the size of the Board and the importance of efficient communication, procedures will be defined which will enable efficient decision making and implementation.

    Division of Tasks

    Euromath Center,University of Copenhagen, Denmark
    (Scientific official responsible for the projekt: Prof. F.Topsoe) will:
    - convene meetings,
    - organise mailing lists and communication procedures,
    - provide one of the technical co-ordinators,
    - purchase equipment for partners in the NIS,
    - provide an overview of computer tools for mathematicians,
    - propose information retrieval facilities at EmNet centres,
    - provide overview of available relevant software,
    - give advise regarding interchange of documents,
    - suggest common guidlines for users of EmNet sites.

    European Mathematical Trust, Canterbury, England
    (Scientific official responsible for the projekt: Prof.J.B.Slater) will:
    - provide contacts and give advice reflecting the wide work already done by this partner in building a modern research infrastructure,
    - give advice regarding the Euromath System,
    - give advice regarding Document Type Definitions for document handling.

    The Laboratory of Computer Aided Mathematics, University of Helsinki, Finland
    (Scientific official responsible for the projekt: Prof.M.Seppala) will:
    - provide access to the specific scientific oriented work and knowledge of this partner in the field of Computer Aided Mathematics,
    - provide facilities for mobility,
    - provide specific information e.g. on LINUX which may play a major role in the project.

    The University of Kent, Canterbury, United Kingdom
    (Scientific official responsible for the projekt: G.Tardivel) will:
    - advise as needed regarding all aspects of computer networking,
    - advise with a view of establishing electronic publishing services,
    - provide facilities for mobility,
    - give advice regarding equipment to be acquired.

    The Information and Publishing Department, Steklov Mathematical Institute, Moscow, Russia
    (Scientific official responsible for the projekt: N.N.Repin) will:
    - participate actively in planning acquisition of equipment,
    - provide one of the technical co-ordinators,
    - resume special responsibility for cross-regional activities on radiation of results in NIS countries,
    - implement central information, directory and publication services.

    The NIS partners will:
    - provide a regional co-ordinator,
    - co-ordinate regional activities,
    - ensure services at the regional level in collaboration with the sites in question,
    - assist in the selection of hardware and software based solutions,
    - co-ordinate mobility and work out a mobility plan for research from the NIS.

    All NIS organisations will:
    - provide a description of the local sites in order to upgrade these sites to the required standard for EmNet centres,
    - upgrade the networking environment within and between the centres,
    - establish local EmNet centres with tasks such as being a resource of information, providing services for the users (access to information, pre-prints) and adaption of common guidlines for users and/or provide links to regional key-centres as a subtitute for a local EmNet Center,
    - install and operate the equipment and services,
    - take part in mobility actions.


    The contract will last 36 months, from June 01,1995 until May 31,1998.
    The main activities will be as indicated below:

    Reporting schedule

    Intermediate reports will be submitted to INTAS after the first and second year of the work programme. A final report will be submitted to INTAS within two months after the completion of the work programme.