National Year for Mathematics 2000 (NYMaths2000) is the current working title for a host of events, projects and initiatives aimed at raising the profile of mathematics within the UK. NYMaths2000 is intended to run in parallel with the National Numeracy Strategy and is expected to take place within the period January to December 2000. It will also support the wider objectives of increasing the mathematical skills base of the nation through a number of attractive and imaginative projects. We are currently working closely with the DFEE on this consultative stage with a view to setting up formal structures in the very near future.
We feel that the vital role of mathematics has for too long been hidden from the public. This unseen engine which powers much of our modern world needs to be brought to the foreground and celebrated as one of this country's key creative industries. We thereby hope to encourage both students and adults to see mathematics as a key part of their educational and personal development. To those youngtalented mathematicians we want to show that a career as a mathematician can be highly stimulating and richly rewarding. We very much hope that the National Year for Mathematics 2000 will be the springboard for a real change in the way mathematics and science are seen in our culture. The projects we ourselves are initiating will aim to foster a greater appreciation, wider access, and a sense of participation between the public and the mathematical sciences.
There has been the support of the Joint Mathematical Council and the National Education Business Partnership Network for our first project, the Mathemagical Mystery Tour travelling exhibition. This is now a Millennium Award Scheme holder (administered by the Royal Society and the British Association and funded by the Millennium Commission). After pilot events next Spring, the Mathemagical Mystery Tour will travel around the country from September 1999 to December 2000. This has also been a first step in international collaboration, with partners including Techniquest (Cardiff), NRICH (Cambridge) and WQED (Pittsburgh, USA).
We have also initiated the first steps in compiling a list of all events, projects and initiatives currently being considered by organisations and individuals around the country. These are at various stages of development, from an idea for discussion to a fully funded national project. These can include in-school educational initiatives as well as after-school projects and also events aimed at a general audience. Please request the Events, Projects & Initiatives document for the latest information. One of our key tasks is to bring together in partnership people with similar aims, and to ensure that the funding and resources available will make a real impact at a local level and national level. To take part in NYMaths2000 please request the Call for Participation document which includes a form to fill in with details of your project.
To give a flavour of some of the further projects being put forward we would like to highlight the Mathemagical Network, the expansion of Mathematics Masterclasses and Mathematical Challenges, the creation of Maths Clubs, Maths Resource Centres, Mathematics on the Tube poster campaign, Mathematics on postage stamps, Mathematical Art exhibitions, Mathematics in the Media and Mathematics in Museums.
It is envisaged that the MeV will manage the Mathemagical Mystery Tour and will also coordinate further events for NYMaths2000. The MeV is in the process of incorporation as a non-profit organisation. The structure of the MeV will consist of Patrons, an Executive Board, an NYMaths2000 Committee, Corporate Patrons, Corporate Associates and Partnership Organisations. More details are available in the NYMaths2000 Sponsorship document. Our aim is that the MeV will continue initiating projects in the public understanding of mathematics beyond the year 2000 and we look forward to developing long-term relationships with individuals and organisations dedicated to the same goals.
I would be happy to discuss any of these issues further and during this consultative period all comments, suggestions and advice will be gratefully received.
Richard Mankiewicz, Chief Executive, MeVContact
Middlesex University, Quensway, Enfield
Middx EN3 4SF (UK)
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