Collaborative Mathematics for Real World Issues

Strategic Objects

“Development of mathematical sciences to describe and analyze social issues in which basic principle is unclear”

“Creation, advancement, and systematization of innovative information technologies and their underlying mathematical methodologies for obtaining new knowledge and insight from use of big data across different fields”

Research Supervisor

Hiroshi Kokubu(Professor, Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University)


To achieve breakthroughs in addressing of real world issues that have been difficult to solve through extensions of existing science and technology desperately requires solutions based on innovative concepts incorporating a broad array of ideas and approaches from modern mathematics. Producing those solutions requires that these issues be addressed from mathematical perspectives that widely range from pure mathematics, such as algebra, geometry, analysis, to applied, statistical, and discrete mathematics.
This research area aims to apply the full potential of mathematics to the resolution of real world issues and, within the process of addressing those problems, furthering the development of mathematics itself. In the pursuit of research, great emphasis will be placed on the researchers themselves experiencing the real world issues firsthand, so that they can develop their own awareness of the issues at hand and keep in mind the need for solution-oriented approaches as they advance basic research. It is expected that researchers in the mathematical fields will collaborate with theoretical and experimental researchers in the natural sciences, information sciences, engineering, and life sciences. Similarly it is expected that the researchers from various fields will be engaged in mathematical fields and work to solve issues. In the management of the research area, the research director will place great emphasis on researchers mutually influencing one another and working to solve problems from an interdisciplinary, integrative perspective. As a result, it is intended that a succession of young researchers will emerge to become future world-class leaders in the field of mathematical sciences.

Research Supervisor’s Policy on Call for Application, Selection, and Management of the Research Area

Advances in measurement devices, dramatic improvements in computer performance, and other developments in recent years have made it possible to acquire large volumes of information on life, natural, and social, phenomena, among others. The essential complexity of these phenomena, however, has kept their complete understanding and control out of reach. To achieve such understanding and control, it is critical that the essential parts of complex phenomena be extracted and understood mathematically. Similarly, integrating and analyzing the varied and voluminous data (big data) observed and gathered from various phenomena, efficiently extracting the required knowledge, and using it to create value for society demands the building of mathematical methods and algorithms, along with other fundamental techniques. As such, it is anticipated not only that those mathematical methods will be improved but also that modern mathematical theories that have yet to be actively applied will lead to groundbreaking results.
Proposals in this Research Area will be solicited for projects expected to produce—through the use of ideas from mathematics and mathematical sciences—breakthroughs in solving issues for society and humankind that have evaded solution through the extensions of existing science and technology. Emphasis will be placed not only on new scientific and technical contributions from the existing fields of mathematics and mathematical sciences but also on the types of solutions to contemporary real-world issues enabled by such research results. Several research issues are included in the descriptions of the strategic objectives of this Research Area, but they should not be viewed as exclusive and applicants should feel free to exercise their imaginations in submitting innovative proposals to address various fields and phenomena from the perspectives given below.

- Development of new mathematical ideas and methods to address issues that because of extreme complexity, largeness of scale, or heterogeneity are impractical by means of ordinary mathematical methods (analysis, computation, etc.)
- Advances in technology using mathematical concepts to forecast or predict the emergence, scale, and impact of major phenomena that have to date been impossible to forecast because of their local or regional nature, transience, irreproducibility, measurement difficulty, or for other reasons.
- The provision of new methods of analysis and control of real-world phenomena brought about through significant advances in understanding or descriptions achieved on the basis of innovative mathematical ideas or approaches.

There are no limits to the mathematical theories or methods to be used in solving issues, and any fields of mathematics, varying from pure mathematics including algebra, geometry, and analysis to applied, statistical, and discrete mathematics may be employed. As in past calls for applications, proposals will be welcomed from researchers joining mathematics and mathematical sciences from other fields. However, there are high expectations for ambitious research proposals from the mathematics side this year. For instance, proposals that utilize ideas from geometry (in a broad sense) are welcomed, as there have not been many proposals related to geometry so far. Needless to say, those from other fields of mathematics are welcomed as well.
In the pursuit of research, great emphasis will be placed on researchers themselves experiencing the front lines of various real-world issues firsthand, so that they can develop their own awareness of the relevant issues, bearing in mind the need for approaches to solutions as they advance their basic research. It is expected, therefore, that the submission of proposals to this Research Area will particularly be based on an awareness of ties to society, and that recognition of their importance will form the basis of their being raised as a key issue in considering mathematical approaches to finding solutions. Young researchers who will shape the next era are strongly invited to submit proposals demonstrating the will to go beyond mathematical research to actively engage in activities such as communication with researchers at companies or in other fields.
Those who wish to prepare proposals from the mathematics side might worry about the lack of experience of collaboration or contact with researchers in other fields outside their discipline. In the call for application in this year, we greatly welcome ambitious and challenging proposals based on ideas that enable us to utilize conceptions and methods from mathematical research in an original manner that can offer solutions to issues faced by society and humankind, even if the proposers do not have clear plans for, nor experience of, contacts in the front lines to which mathematical research will be applied. The policy mentioned above of placing emphasis on fundamental research based on firsthand experience at the front line of real-world issues remains unchanged from the calls of past years; but for proposals from the mathematics side, it is acceptable to postpone making a detailed plan of work on the targeted issues of society and humankind until after acceptance, provided that the proposers hold sufficient intention to be tied to their front lines.
In managing the Research Area, the research director will actively organize Research Area meetings, workshops, and other events so as to promote exchange among researchers within various fields of mathematics and in various other research fields related to the research topics. At the same time, links will be established to related CREST and PRESTO Research Areas. Mathematics-related outreach, education, and other activities will be undertaken with the cooperation of researchers in this Research Area.
It is intended that this Research Area’s PRESTO research activities be a conduit for researchers in the Research Area to mutually influence one another and—while working to solve problems from an interdisciplinary, integrative perspective—produce research results that give rise to science and technology innovation. Furthermore, it is hoped that a succession of young researchers will emerge as creators of new fields of mathematical sciences and as world-class leaders in mathematics

Research Area Advisors

・Shihoko Ishii
Professor, Tokyo Woman’s Christian University

・Toshio Oshima
Professor, Josai University

Professor Emeritus, The University of Tokyo

Professor, Kyoto University

・Akira Takada
Junior Fellow, Asahi Glass Company

・Hal Tasaki
Professor, Gakushuin University

・Takashi Tsuchiya
Professor, National Graduate Instiute for Policy Studies

・Masaharu Nagayama
Professor, Hokkaido University

Project professor, Research Institute for Mathematical Sciences, Kyoto University

・Reiko Miyaoka
Professor, Tohoku University

Year Started : 2014

Deepening of Discrete Mathematical Theories for Optimization of Urban and Social Systems

Research Director:
Naoyuki Kamiyama(Associate Professor, Kyushu University)

Development of Floquet theorem for multi-body and time-delayed systems and its application for neuroscience

Research Director:
Kiyoshi Kotani(Associate Professor, The University of Tokyo)

Statistial Analysis and Theory via Geometric Features of Data Spaces

Research Director:
Kei Kobayashi(Associate Professor, Keio University)

Mathematical foundation and methodologies of integrative statistical modeling

Research Director:
Taiji Suzuki(Associate Professor, Tokyo Institute of Technology )

A Quest for Constancy Measures of Natural Language

Research Director:
Kumiko Tanaka-Ishii(Professor, The University of Tokyo)

Development of theory and software to enumerate solutions in crystallographic phase problem

Research Director:
Ryoko Oishi-Tomiyasu(Associate Professor, YAMAGATA UNIVERSITY)

New development of time-series predicting process based on comprehensive mathematical approach

Research Director:
Naoto Nakano(PRESTO Researcher, Japan Science and Technology Agancy (JST))

Advanced Homomorphic Encryption for Privacy-Preserving Analysis of Huge Genomic Information

Research Director:
Koji Nuida(Senior Researcher, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST))

Control of Graphene Synthesis Through Mathematical Modeling – Towards Next-Generation Electronics -

Research Director:
Daniel Packwood(Lecturer, kyoto University)

Year Started : 2015

Development of a method for the analysis of epidemiological dynamics incorporating non-epidemiological data

Research Director:
Ryosuke Omori(Assistant Professor, Research Center for Zoonosis Control, Hokkaido University)

Machine learning theory in functional space and its application to high-frequency financial data analysis

Research Director:
Teppei Ogihara(Assistant Professor, School of Statistical Thinking, Research Organization of Information and Systems The Institute of Statistical Mathematics)

Multiphase shape optimization in phononic crystal design

Research Director:
Elliott Ginder(Assistant Professor, Research Institute for Electronic Science, Hokkaido University)

A variational structure in population dynamics and its application to controlling growing population

Research Director:
Tetsuya Kobayashi(Associate Professor, Institute of Industrial Science, The University of Tokyo)

Formal methods for hybrid systems based on the theory of nonstandard programming languages

Research Director:
Kohei Suenaga(Associate Professor, Graduate School of Informatics, Kyoto University)

Chemotacxis dynamics of leukocytes : research and application into an individualized (tailored) treatment of cancer

Research Director:
Yoshie Sugiyama(Professor, Faculty of Mathematics, Kyushu University)

A novel information processing technology for soft devices based on dynamical systems

Research Director:
Kohei Nakajima(Assistant Professor, The Hakubi Center for Advanced Research & Graduate School of Informatics, Kyoto University)

Development of data-driven science based on computational algebraic geometry

Research Director:
Kenji Nagata(Senior Researcher, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST))

Development of Mathematical Foundations of Indirect Measurement Based on Complex Analysis

Research Director:
Takaaki Nara(Associate Professor, Graduate School of Information Science and Technology, The University of Tokyo)

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