The world digital mathematics library: Report of a panel discussion

Peter J. Olver

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

8 Scopus citations


A summary of the Panel Discussion of the World Digital Mathematics Library held at the 2014 International Congress of Mathematicians in Seoul, South Korea, on August 20, 2014.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPlenary Lectures and Ceremonies
EditorsSun Young Jang, Young Rock Kim, Dae-Woong Lee, Ikkwon Yie
PublisherKYUNG MOON SA Co. Ltd.
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9788961058049
StatePublished - 2014
Event2014 International Congress of Mathematicans, ICM 2014 - Seoul, Korea, Republic of
Duration: Aug 13 2014Aug 21 2014

Publication series

NameProceeding of the International Congress of Mathematicans, ICM 2014


Conference2014 International Congress of Mathematicans, ICM 2014
Country/TerritoryKorea, Republic of

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
On June 1-3, 2012, the CEIC organized a Symposium on The Future World Heritage Digital Mathematics Library that was held at the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and involved over 50 participants from throughout the world. The meeting was supported by a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Participants, keynote talks, position statements, panel discussions, breakout sessions and more can all be found on the Conference Wiki [24].

Funding Information:
Various regional initiatives exist, and thus prove, to some extent, the overall concept. However, a truly global digital library remains to be realized. In 2012, the CEIC organized a meeting at the U.S. National Academy of Sciences funded by the Sloan Foundation, [24], which was followed by the writing of a report, issued by the US National Research Council in March, 2014 [6]. The meeting on Sunday at ICM 2014 and formation of a Working Group mentioned above was summarized; see also Patrick Ion’s contribution below. The support and publicizing of this initiative by the mathematical world at large is needed, so that we will be able to go to funding agencies, the community, private foundations, etc. to seek the required support. Indeed, the stars seem to be aligning now, and it would be a shame not to take advantage of the moment.

Funding Information:
Gerhard Paseman, USA, asked about the political implications of a WDML. The publishers are very good at lobbying the government, and might influence the funding of mathematics were such a digital library to affect their business. Ingrid Daubechies replied that in some countries, including US, there are legal obligations to ensure that publicly-funded research is publicly-accessible. Countries are passing laws to ensure this. Paseman replied that that doesn’t address the issue. Suppose we had such a library — how would that affect government funding in the future? If the AMS sees a decrease in their revenue as a result, they may ask that their government only funds those researchers who published with them. Daubechies said the publishers have not seen a decrease in revenue from implementing a moving wall, and Gert-Martin Greuel said that publishers may well profit from implementing a moving wall. Moreover, once a digital library is in place with structured metadata, which is the hard part, and basic services, publishers will be able to make use of that to enhance their own web pages, offer additional services, etc. Peter Olver added that representatives from the US National Science Foundation (NSF) and the German Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) attended the 2012 NAS Workshop, and were very supportive of the effort.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 by SEOULICM 2014 Organizing Committee. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2020 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


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