Impression of the IAS Boards meeting and ERC Celebration event
On the occasion of the first official meeting of its Scientific Advisory Board and Board of Trustees, the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) organised several events on September 7-8, 2017. It all started with the ERC 10 Year’s Anniversary Event.
ERC 10 Year’s Anniversary Event
On Thursday Sep 7th, the IAS together with Innovation Exchange Amsterdam (IXA) organised the ERC 10 Year’s Anniversary Event. Besides celebrating the jubilee of the European Research Council, the University of Amsterdam had just been granted its 100th ERC grant; uniquely timed! IAS Scientific Advisory Board member Professor Helga Nowotny - founding member and former president of the ERC - gave the keynote speech. The full programme of the event can be found here.
IAS Boards meeting
On Friday Sep 8th, the Mayor of Amsterdam, Eberhard Van der Laan, hosted the first part of the IAS Boards meeting at his official residence. Scientific Director Peter Sloot gave a presentation on the current state of affairs of the institute and the ambitions for the coming years. The Board members emphasized the importance of creating space and time for interaction and experiment in order to let new ideas flourish. Besides the crucial value of interdisciplinarity and international collaboration, the importance of having an innovative and entrepreneurial approach was stressed. In the second part of the Boards meeting, the IAS Programme Directors were given the floor to present the selected IAS research programmes. All presentations were followed by lively interaction with the Board members, which continued over lunch.
In the afternoon, an academic discussion on ‘Complexity in Science and Society’ took place at the institute. Two lectures were given as inspiring examples of the type of research that the IAS pursues. Mike Lees and Debraj Roj started off by presenting some of the work done on data driven modelling of urban complex systems; from modelling massive human crowds (Kumbh Mela Experiment), understanding the impact of Electric Vehicles in the Netherlands, to agent-based models of slum dynamics in India. The next speaker was Mile Gu, who presented that Complexity and Quantum Science appear at first to be two fields that bear little relation, but that there is growing evidence that the science of the very small may help us better understand that of the very large.