Whittaker Functions: Number Theory, Geometry and Physics (16w5039)

Arriving in Banff, Alberta Sunday, July 24 and departing Friday July 29, 2016


(City University of New York)

Benjamin Brubaker (University of Minnesota)

(Stanford University)

(Boston College)

(University of Massachusetts Amherst)


The Banff International Research Station will host the "Whittaker Functions: Number Theory, Geometry and Physics" workshop from July 24th to July 29th, 2016.

Whittaker functions are higher-dimensional generalizations of classical Bessel functions that arise in independent ways in number theory, representation theory, and mathematical physics. This workshop intends to explore the deeper connections between these subjects suggested by their common link to Whittaker functions. By studying various modes of generalizing the notion of Whittaker functions, we observe algebraic and geometric constructions which hint at some of these possible connections. The fields of study which are brought to bear in these investigations include some of the most remarkable mathematics of the past half-century, including crystal graphs, quantum groups, the Yang-Baxter equation, and the geometry of flag varieties. The workshop brings together a mix of experts and junior faculty in these and related areas in an attempt to make further progress in this rapidly evolving field.

The Casa Matemática Oaxaca (CMO) in Mexico, and the Banff International Research Station for Mathematical Innovation and Discovery (BIRS) in Banff, are collaborative Canada-US-Mexico ventures that provide an environment for creative interaction as well as the exchange of ideas, knowledge, and methods within the Mathematical Sciences, with related disciplines and with industry.

The research station in Banff is supported by Canada's Natural Science and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF), Alberta's Advanced Education and Technology, and Mexico's Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACYT). The research station in Oaxaca is funded by CONACYT.