Gidea Named to Chinese Foreign Expert Program

Prestigious Grant Will Support Collaborative Research With Chinese Institutions

Dr. Marian Gidea, chair of the mathematics department at Stern College for Women, has been awarded a grant as part of China’s High-End Foreign Expert Recruitment Program, a highly selective program that recruits top-level scientists from around the world to collaborate on global research projects with academic institutions in China.

One of Dr. Marian Gidea’s research projects involves searching financial data for early signs of critical transitions that could cause financial crises.

Experts in the program are nominated by presidents of Chinese universities in specific fields and evaluated by a selection committee in Beijing, with the ultimate goal of enlisting experts in natural science, technology, the humanities and social sciences to create innovative international teams that are capable of conducting critical research and promoting new disciplines. As a participating expert, Gidea will collaborate with Xiamen University of Technology (XMUT) to further develop the applications of his research in nonlinear analysis and dynamical systems to fields such as engineering, astrodynamics, epidemiology and finance.

“Collaborating with a university in China is a new and interesting opportunity for me, and this is a very special program that carries a lot of scientific recognition,” said Gidea.

The $40,000, renewable one-year grant will also support Gidea’s current research. That includes one project in collaboration with Wai-Ting Lam and Maxwell Musser, students in YU’s Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematical Sciences, which seeks to use mathematical modeling to study the dynamics of the moonlet of a Trojan asteroid and the orbit of Jupiter’s comet Oterma. With undergraduates Joshua Blau and Daniel Goldsmith, Gidea is also using network science to map the spread of the Zika virus, and he is partnering with Miriam Herman, a student earning her masters in applied mathematics, on another project that searches for early signs of critical transitions that could cause financial crises in financial data, such as stock prices.

Gidea hopes that these projects will be able to serve as starting points for new collaborations with academics at XMUT, which he will visit on two occasions to deliver seminar lectures and conduct research. As a participating scientist in the program, he will also author a book with faculty at XMUT and publish research articles.

“The visits to XMUT will constitute a great opportunity to start a multi-level collaboration between Yeshiva University and XMUT, which may include joint research projects with other disciplines and educational and training opportunities for students,” said Gidea. “I also hope to help recruit Chinese students to study at Yeshiva University as part of our graduate programs in mathematics and maybe even expand such educational opportunities beyond mathematics.”

“Increasingly, scholars from across the world are collaborating on research projects,” said Dr. Selma Botman, provost and vice president of academic affairs at YU. “Such research not only enriches a faculty member’s investigation, but enhances the universities where the research takes place. Professor Gidea is representative of Yeshiva University’s stellar faculty whose research is recognized by colleagues around the globe.”