Black Heroes of Mathematics

Monday 26 October 2020 to Tuesday 27 October 2020

Organising Committee:

  • Nira Chamberlain – IMA
  • Frank Neumann – LMS
  • Troy Astarte – BSHM
  • Snezana Lawrence – BSHM and IMA

This meeting is hosted by the ICMS.

The British Society for the History of Mathematics (BSHM), the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications (IMA) and the London Mathematical Society (LMS), and the International Centre for Mathematical Science (ICMS) are holding a two day conference on Black Heroes of Mathematics. 

The Vision of the conference is “To celebrate the inspirational contributions of black role models to the field of mathematics”. 

There will be a balance of technical talks by internationally renowned black speakers that include some detail of career paths and experience to provide a testimonial dimension.

This event has now finished.

Talks and recordings from the event are available here.

19 November Update - We received a large number of requests for attendance certificates, we are still processing those.

Feedback - thank you to all who provied feedback and put themselves forward for future events. The committee will review this, and announce plans for 2021 in due course.



The programme includes a range of different talks covering reserach, career paths and inspirational figures. The attached title/abstract info provides more details. Registered participants are welcome to join all sessions. However, participants are also welcome to drop in and out of the meeting if that is preferable. The attached title/abstract info will help participants plan their attendance.

For talk titles and abstracts please follow this link.

(All timings are Greenwich Mean Time (GMT))

26th October 2020

Day 1, Session 1

The talks for this session were pre-recorded.


10:00 Welcome – Dr Nira Chamberlain (IMA)

10:05 Message from BHMS/LMS/ICMS/IMA


10:10 Dr Angela Tabiri (AIMS Ghana)

The Journey of Female African Mathematicians


10:50 Dr Howard Haughton (King's College London)

On the use of Probability and Moment generating functions for quantifying loan portfolio credit losses


11:30 Professor Tannie Liverpool (Bristol)

From Boltzmann to bird flocks: journeys in non-equilibrium statistical mechanics

12:10 Close of Session/Lunch


Day 1, Session 2

13:00 Dr Nira Chamberlain (IMA)

Black Heroes of Mathematics

13:50 Break

14:00 Panel Discussion

15:30 Close of Day 1


27th October 2020

Day 2, Session 1

The talks for this session were pre-recorded.

(Note: We realise there are participants from different timezones, these talks are avialable NOW via this link, )


13:00 Welcome – Dr Nira Chamberlain (IMA)


13:10 Natalya Silcott (FIMA Harrow School & CaribbeanDiaspora for Science, Technology and Innovation, UK)

Leaving a Legacy


13:50 Dr Spencer Becker-Kahn (Cambridge)

Soap Bubbles and Minimal Surfaces


14:50 Professor Nkechi Agwu (BMCC/CUNY)

Mathematical Storytelling: Fostering Creativity, Innovation, CulturalAwareness and Entrepreneurship


15:30 Professor Edray Goins

The Black Mathematician Chronicles: Our Quest to Update the MAD Pages

16:00 Close of Session


Day 2, Session 2

18:00 Panel Discussion

19:30 End of event


This event was part of the Black History Month 2020 celebrations.

This event was supported as part of the ICMS Online Mathematical Sciences Seminars.