Talking

I love talking about maths. Please get in touch (r [dot] elwes [at] gmail [dot] com) if you would like me to come and speak to your school or club. The sessions I currently offer include:

  • Knot Theory interactive masterclass – I have versions of this suitable for beginners and for more advanced (e.g. A-level) students.
  • Nim and Nimbers – an interactive masterclass on game theory and mathematical strategy, suitable for audiences of all ages.
  • Unpicking Pick’s Theorem – an interactive masterclass (ideally requiring computer access for all students, working in pairs) about Pick’s theorem.
  • The Maths that Makes the Modern World – a talk, suitable for A-level students, about some of the mathematics behind industry and the internet.
  • Infinity and the Limits of Maths – a talk, suitable for A-level students, about some of the mathematics behind industry and the internet.
  • The Science of Geometry and the Art of Optimisation – a talk, suitable for GCSE students, about the mathematics of optimisation.
  • I have various talks suitable for mixed mathematical audiences (e.g. undergraduate maths societies).

 

 

Appearances

This is a list of are some of the talks, interviews, and masterclasses I’ve given over the years. For more technical presentations, see below.

• Talk at ESOF (European Science Open Forum, 26th July 2016) on Exploring the Turing Myth, jointly with mathematician Roberto Natalini, playwright & director Maria Elisabetta Marelli, science writer Francesca Riccioni, and cartoonist Tuono Pettinato.

• Three talks at the Training Partnership at the UCL institute of Education, on 25th November 2015, 15th December 2015, and 3rd March 2016.

• Royal Institution Scottish Mathematics Masterclass Day at Edinburgh University (June 2015), on Nim and Nimbers

• Café Scientifique talk (May 2015) in Headingley (Leeds), on The Science of Geometry and the Art of Optimisation

• University of York Mathematics Society talk (April 2014) on Gödel, Incompleteness, and Unprovable Theorems (Video)

Institute of Mathematics and its Applications Seminar (December 2013) at University of Central Lancashire.

• WP Milne lecture at Leeds Festival of Science (March 2013) on The Maths that Makes the Modern World.

• Maths Special edition of The Guardian’s Science Weekly podcast, along with Ian Stewart and Brian Cox, and hosted by Alok Jha (March 2011). MP3 here.

• Interview with Neil Denny on Little Atoms on Resonance FM (December 2010). MP3 here.

• Interview with Dan Damon on World Update on the BBC World Service, about unprovability and set theory (November 2010). MP3 here.

• Talk at the West Yorkshire Astronomical Society, about Infinity and Hugh Woodin’s Ultimate L (November 2011).

• Talk at PhilSoc in Manchester, to an audience of students from three Manchester schools (September 2011), about Infinity and the Limits of Mathematics.

• Webinar on “Some families of polyhedra” at Mathfuture, hosted by Maria Droujkova (May 2011). If you don’t know your tetrahemihexahedron from your tridiminished rhombicosidodecahedronfrom, watch it online here.

• In 2011-2016, workshops on Knot Maths to school-students aged 13-14 as part of the Royal Institution Mathematics Masterclasses in Leeds. Handout here [pdf].

• Maths Excursion talk at Leeds University on the topic of Pick’s Theorem and Ehrhart Polynomials (February 2012). Slides here [pdf].

• Logic Seminar at the University of Leeds, on the topic of Concrete Incompleteness. (October 2010) Slides and blogpost here.

• In 2009-2016, Knot Theory masterclass to A-level students at Leeds Festival of Science and/or Leeds University’s Reach For Excellence Summer-schools (sometimes jointly with Matt Daws).

• A 2 hour workshop on Pick’s Theorem for sixth-formers, jointly with Matt Daws, at Leeds Festival of Science (March 2013).

• I also have given talks and masterclasses on various aspects of mathematics (including prime numbers, tessellations, infinity, knot theory, waves) at schools around Yorkshire.

• In February 2007, interviewed on Channel 4’s radio show The Tube, discussing Goldbach’s Conjecture with Alex James (of Blur fame) in front of an audience of screaming teenage rock fans. (Write-up here.)

• October 2007, talk about e and transcendental numbers at Café Scientifique in Chapel Allerton, Leeds.

Research Presentations

• Workshop on the Model Theory of Finite & Pseudofinite Structures, University of Leeds, 29th July 2016

• Model Theory Seminar, University of Leeds, 5th July 2016

• Model Theory Seminar, University of Leeds, 16th June 2015

• Model Theory Seminar, University of Leeds, 2nd December 2014

• Mathematics Seminar, University of Essex, 24th April 2014

• Interdisciplinary Seminar, University of Essex, 24th April 2014

• LAND (Leeds Applied Non-linear Dynamics) Seminar, University of Leeds, 22nd October 2013

• Logic Seminar, University of Leeds, 20th October 2010

• Mathematical Logic Seminar, Université de Lyon, 18th May 2006

• Graduiertenkolleg Mathematische Logik und Anwendungen, Albert-Ludwigs Universität, Freiburg, 8th May 2006

• Workshop On Finite Models, Université de Paris VII, 27th March 2006

• Workshop On Finite And Algorithmic Model Theory, University of Durham, 9-13th January 2006

• Mathematical Logic Seminar, University of Oxford, 18th November 2005

• Mathematical Logic Seminar, University of Leeds, 26th January 2005

• British Mathematical Colloquium, Queen’s University Belfast, 5-8th April, 2004

Commendations

Talking Maths on The Tube

“Dr Elwes was a total dude. He looked like he could have been in one of the bands we had on.” – Alex James, in The Independent

 

Little Atoms

“great… really engaging look at the fundamentals of maths for a relatively lay listener.” – Michael Marshall, presenter of Strange Quarks and Skeptics with a K