Open Problems in Mathematical and Computational Sciences Conference

A selected group of invited speakers and more than 150 students and researchers attended a special conference on September 18-20, in Sait Halim Pasha Palace in Istanbul. There has never been a conference of this kind in Turkey, where “open” or “unsolved” problems are discussed; even in the World there are only a few examples. In principle, scientists and engineers attend conferences to brag (!) about problems they have solved and to “impress” but at the same time to inform the academic community about their methods and the final solution(s). It is not expected that a Scientist would take the stand in a conference to talk about a problem she or he could not (yet) solved. However, all scientific processses start with hypotheses whose ramifications we do not know or problems whose solutions are not clear yet. Either for personal reasons or in accordance to the expectations of the conference attendees, scientists would push the open/unsolved problems to the back burner, and talk about about what they have solved, understood, and or proved. Still, once in a while (perhaps every 5-10 years), scientists come to together to discuss problems they have solved yet or problems whose solutions seem rather challenging. Since 70s there have 6 or 8 such conferences. The Mathematical and Computational Sciences Labs within Tubitak BILGEM is happy to announce that with under the leadership of Professor Cetin Kaya Koc has organized such a conference with stellar outcomes. First of all, a large number of young academics, MS and PhD candidates from across Turkey (as well as several from neighboring countries), have attended the conference and expressed they have significantly enjoyed and also been impressed. The objective of the Mathematical and Computational Sciences Labs was to bring together the top scientists who have been studying various aspects of mathematical and computational sciences, particularly, cryptography, information and communication theory, codes and finite fields, and encourage them to discuss the most recent and exciting open problems in their fields, in order to motivate the young academics and lead them towards problems and areas which have long lasting impact in sciences, engineering and technology. We believe we have mostly accomplished our goal, and excited our young scientists.

Here are some comments from some of them: • Xx
• Yy

On the other hand, the invited scientists were indeed among the most successful and prolific scientists in the World. They have from various countries, and the demonstration of this fact is yet another proof that science and engineering is culturally much more diverse now. The list of countries and number of scientists from each country was a good reminder of this fact: USA (2), Germany (2), Belgium (2), Brazil (1), China and Hong Kong (2), France (3), Japan (1), Canada (2), Norway (1), Romania (1) and Turkey (3).

The impact and importance of the conference was well recognized by the invited speakers. We have heard very nice comments from them:

• Gheorghe Paun: Thank you very much once again for the great hospitality. Everything was high quality, very professional.
• Henning Stichtenoth: I would like to tell you that we enjoyed the workshop very much. And I heard that many other participants shared this opinion. Thanks a lot for organizing this event!
• Tor Helleseth: Thanks for the wonderful meeting in Istanbul. I enjoyed it very much. The surroundings and the whole conference was a marvelous experience.
The Committee
General Chair

Çetin Kaya Koç

Organization Committee

Şükran Külekci (Local Chair)
İsa Sertkaya
Emrah Karagöz
Birnur Ocaklı