The Great Plains Operator Theory Symposium (GPOTS) began as a regional conference at the University of Kansas in May, 1981. In May, 1984 it was held at Iowa State, with an attendance of about 50 mathematicians. In the intervening years, the conference has grown, and now it is the largest conference in the area of operator theory/operator algebras in the world. In recent years attendance has fluctuated around 100. In May, 1995 it was held at the University of Cincinnati, and May, 1996 at Arizona State University. Last year (1997), when it was held at Queens University in Kingston, Ontario, attendance was over 125, but that was held in conjunction with the Canadian Operator Theory Symposium. Last May (1998) it was held at Kansas State University. Other institutions that have hosted GPOTS include Texas A&M, University of Houston, University of Colorado, University of Iowa, University of Nebraska and University of New Mexico.
Participants include not only U.S. and Canadian mathematicians, but also some from Europe, Japan and Australia.
The structure of the conference will be as follows: the conference will last 4 ½ days: each day there will be two plenary speakers and two or three parallel sessions of talks running for 25 minutes. The evening before the first day there will be a reception, and toward the end a conference banquet. It has also been customary to have some kind of conference excursion, and t he middle day of the conference we plan to end the formal talks at noon, and take the participants to Boone for a ride on the Scenic Valley.
The conference is not focused on a single theme, but encompasses a wide spectrum of operator theory and operator algebras, including applications. Thus, we have invited plenary speakers working in Von Neumann algebras, classification of C*-algebras, nonsefladjoint algebras (including groupoid theory, inductive limit algebras), applications to statistics and electrical engineering.
GPOTS is an opportunity for graduate students who are nearing completion and for young postdocs to talk about their work, and to meet with and interact with more established researchers.
William Arveson, University of California, Berkeley
In the thirty years he has been at Berkeley, he has had a major influence on operator algebras. Recent work concerns endomorphisms of operator algebras.
Man-Duen Choi, University of Toronto
Choi has been involved in many developments in operator algebras over the years.
Yuri Latushkin, University of Missouri
Does control theory, operator theory, mathematical physics
Baruch Solel, Technion--Israel Institute of Technology
Solel has had a collaboration with Paul Muhly (U. of Iowa) over the past decade exploiting the theory of groupoids in their study of nonselfadjoint operator algebras.
Huaxin Lin, University of Oregon
Has worked in C*-algebras, including real-rank zero.
Stephen Power, University of Lancaster, U.K.
He has been a frequent visitor to the U.S. and speaker at conferences over the years. His research in inductive limit algebras has had a formative influence on the development of the subject.
V. S. Sunder, Institute of Mathematical Sciences, Madras,
He has coauthored a book with Halmos, and has another book on VonNeumann algebras. In addition he has been active in von Neumann algebras.
GPOTS '99 at Iowa State University is being supported by:
The National Science Foundation
The Departments of Mathematics, Statistics and Electrical Engineering at Iowa State
Miller Lecture Funds from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Iowa State
Professor Wolfgang Kliemann of the Department of Mathematics at Iowa State
There is a GPOTS steering committee which meets each year during the conference to decide on the location of future conferences. Usually, these decisions are made three years in advance of the conference. The steering committee consists of representatives of universities which have held GPOTS in one of the past several years as well as representatives of institutions which would like to host the conference in the future. Universities in the midwest, where GPOTS originated, are prominent on the steering committee.
There are three of us at Iowa State responsible for the organization:
Justin R. Peters
Yiu Tung Poon
Bruce H. Wagner