“The purpose of the initiative is for Sweden to regain an international, cutting-edge position. Mathematics is one of the largest disciplines at Swedish universities. It is also of great importance for Sweden’s future development, as it constitutes the basis for many medical and virtually all scientific and technological implementations”, says Peter Wallenberg Jr, Vice-Chairman of the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation.

Per Alexandersson received his Ph.D. in mathematics at Stockholm University in 2013. He will hold a postdoctoral position in Professor James Haglund’s research group at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, USA. The research project to be undertaken together with Professor Haglund consists of two related problems in the representation theory and the theory of symmetric functions, i.e. functions which do not change under permutations of their variables.

Christiane Tretter is at present Professor at the University of Bern, Switzerland. She will be visiting Professor at the Department of Mathematics at Stockholm University. The goal of the research project is to develop a theory of non-symmetric systems, which lies within Christiane Tretter’s area of expertise. By combining methods involving several branches of mathematics – theory of differential operators, analysis, complex analysis, and geometry – one may take further steps in response to the challenges of mathematical physics.

 “Mathematics research is often seen as esoteric, turned away from the world and incomprehensible – even by other researchers. But without the development of mathematics modern society would not have existed. Today's mathematics research is a foundation for the future. We are very excited to be part of the much-needed math initiative that the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation is now launching”, says Anders Karlhede, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Stockholm University.

The programme provides SEK 160 million in funding, enabling 24 Swedish post-docs to go abroad, and 35 post-docs and 25 visiting Professors to be recruited internationally to Swedish institutions. In this first application round, 15 positions have been filled.