Women in Mathematics

Women in Mathematics

This SAMS division (established at the 2022 AGM) is headed by Prof. Karin-Therese Howell.

For historical reasons, the participation of women in sciences is low. Mathematics is one such science. While statistics relating to the exact numbers and positions (junior lecturer, senior lecturer, associate professor, professor) of women in mathematics are difficult to obtain, a survey of previous editions of the SAMS Congress reveals significantly fewer women mathematicians giving talks, and the recent article by Eder Kikianty and Loyiso Nongxa on the National Research Rating System in South Africa highlights, among other issues, the low number of women who achieve ratings.

Our aim through our activities is to increase the proportion of women in research mathematics (pure and applied mathematics) in South Africa to approximately 50%, to reflect the proportion of women in society.

The Women in Mathematics Division under SAMS aims to:

1. Create a platform for women mathematicians to share their research and experience in a supportive environment;

2. Increase the visibility of South African women mathematicians, both past and present;

2. Link up early career mathematicians/postgraduate students with women mentors;

3. Link up researchers in new collaborative projects;

4. Establish a network of representatives at each university in South Africa, with a mathematics department, so that each woman has a contact in their department with whom to raise concerns which can be discussed and addressed;

5. Offer skills training, both skills that will be useful for careers in mathematics (career development and research).

The proposal for the creation of the Division of Women in Mathematics was prepared by Ms S Selkirk and Prof. K-T Howell and approved at the SAMS AGM in 2022.

For more information, please contact Karin-Therese Howell (kthowell@sun.ac.za)