WOA @ BIRS 2018

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Astrid an Huef (Victoria University of Wellington)
Sara Arklint (University of Copenhagen)
Karen Strung (Radboud University)
Dilian Yang (University of Windsor)

About WOA: Women in Operator Algebras 2018

The WOA: Women in Operator Algebras workshop will take place at the Banff International Research Station, in Banff, Canada, 4-9 November 2018. The workshop is partially supported by NSF-HRD 1500481 – AWM ADVANCE grant and the Compositio Foundation.

Link to workshop information at BIRS website

9 October 2018 updates:

The schedule is now available! (You may be required to log in.)

The conference is coming up quickly! It’s already snowed in Banff, so make sure you pack accordingly.  Banff, Alberta Weather.

Reminder that if you are now unable to attend, please inform the organisers as soon as possible, as we currently have a waiting list.

25 September 2018 updates:

Message from the programme director at MSRI:
In May 2017, BIRS hosted the week-long workshop, Algebraic Combinatorixx 2, which brought together women who worked, in small groups, on eight projects in algebraic combinatorics. The workshop was an astounding success: some of the women had not even known each other prior to the workshop, but they formed cohesive groups and made serious progress toward solving the problems that were set forth by the eight team leaders.
MSRI opened its door to these women during the following summer to pursue and (when possible) complete the projects started at BIRS. Four groups spent a week during the summer 2017.  Several of the women mentioned that knowing they would reunite at MSRI helped them maintain contact following the BIRS workshop.
The Summer Research for Women in Mathematics program was continued in the summer of 2018. MSRI was able to accept 20 women forming six groups ranging in size from 2 to 5 researchers covering topics in Lie Algebras , Riemannian Geometry, Hecke Algebras, PDEs, and Evolutionary Biology.   All of the groups from both summers continue to work together; some of the groups have submitted publications, and many plan to do so within the next few months.
MSRI is very pleased to offer this program once again, and we hope that participants of the workshop you are organizing at BIRS might be able to take advantage of this opportunity.  Deadline for application is 1 December 2018.  More details here.

compositiologo10 September 2018 updates:

We are pleased to announce we have received some additional funding from  Foundation Compositio Mathematica to aid in travel support for participants.


15 August 2018 updates:

-If you have been invited to participate in the workshop but will not be attending, please let the organisers know as soon as possible. This will allow us to invite someone in your place and allow them to have enough time to prepare.

-We would also like to encourage people to start discussing projects. We want to finalise the distribution of participants amongst the projects by the end of August or very early September! You can log into the BIRS site to see a list of participants.

-If you think you may need support with travel funding, please let the organisers know. Unfortunately, we don’t have a lot of funding at the moment, however we are still in the process of applying for support so it is useful for us to know how much is required. Also, we can try to help you with finding local funding sources.

How do I get to Banff International Research Station?

The nearest airport is Calgary International Airport (YYC). To get to BIRS from Calgary, you can reserve the Banff Airporter Shuttle. A second option is to rent a car and carpool to BIRS with other participants. If you are willing to rent a car and drive others, please contact the organisers.

The main objectives of the workshop are for women in operator algebras to pursue cutting-edge collaborative research and to establish a network of women working in the field.

The focus of the workshop is on research in groups. Our groups of 4–7 will be led by 2 co-leaders.

Prior to the workshop, the co-leaders will design a research project, and provide background reading and references for their group.


For more details about specific projects, please contact an associated (co-)leader.

1. Quantum majorization in infinite-dimensional Hilbert Space
Project leader: Sarah Plosker
Familiarity with quantum information theory would be helpful but is not required

2. Nuclearity of C*-algebras of quasi-lattice ordered groups
Project leader: Astrid an Huef
Some knowledge of the C*-algebras of groupoids and/or graphs would be helpful.

3. Equilibrium states on semigroup C*-algebras and groupoids
Project co-leaders: Nadia Larsen and Zahra Afsar
Some knowledge of groupoids, semigroups and/or KMS states would be helpful.

4. Weyl groupoids and Cartan subalgebras for twisted k-graph C*-algebras
Project co-leaders: Elizabeth Gillaspy and Sarah Reznikoff
Some knowledge of Cartan subalgebras and/or C*-algebras of directed graphs, k-graphs and groupoids would be helpful.

5. Spectral Triples for noncompact ultrametric spaces
Project co-leaders: Carla Farsi and Judith Packer
Some knowledge of spectral triples and/or C*-algebras of higher-rank graphs would be helpful.

6. Twisted groupoid algebras and Cartan subalgebras
Project leader: Lisa Orloff Clark
Some knowledge of Cartan subalgebras, Steinberg algebras and/or C*-algebras of groupoids would be helpful.

7. Crossed products, large subalgebras, and structural properties
Project co-leaders:  Dawn Archey and Kun Wang
Some knowledge of crossed product C*-algebras and structural properties such as real rank zero, stable rank one, and finite nuclear dimension would be helpful.

8. Quasidiagonality and crossed products by C*-correspondences
Project co-leaders: Karen Strung and Marzieh Forough
Some knowledge of crossed product C*-algebras, C*-correspondences and structural and the classification programme would be helpful.

9. Index theory and K-theory with applications to arithmetic groups
Project leader: Maria Paula Gomez Aparicio and  Hang Wang

8. Quantum principal bundles and their C*-algebras
Project co-leaders: Francesca Arici and Chiara Pagani
Some basic knowledge of Hopf algebras and C*-algebras would be helpful.

We have invited approximately half of the 42 participants to begin to develop the projects. In effort to avoid the problem of only inviting those that were “seen at the last conference” (which is precisely what often results in women being overlooked!), we have invited expressions of interest from other potential participants. As of 16 July 2018, we only have places available on the waiting list. However, you are welcome to get in touch! We also encourage any woman in operator algebras to add their name here.

Participants should be willing and able to contribute actively to one of the research projects listed below or be willing and able to lead an operator algebras project not already listed. For this reason, preference will be given to established researchers who have already completed their PhD research.

We invite potential participants to submit a CV and a letter of intent to Karen Strung (k.strung@science.ru.nl) or Astrid an Huef (astrid.anhuef@sms.vuw.ac.nz), which will be shared with the conference organisers and project leaders. To be given full consideration, please let us know you are interested by 16 July, 2018. 

The letter of intent should:
-express how the researcher’s expertise can be used with respect to particular projects (please indicate a first and second choice)
-should propose a project, under the broad scope of operator algebras, which she would be willing to lead. In this case, it would be helpful to propose potential coleaders and/or collaborators.