Public Lecture

Prof. Noboru Kikuchi

President of Toyota Konpon Research Institute
Managing Director of Toyota Physical and Chemical Research Institute
Roger L. McCarthy Professor Emeritus of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan


Safety and Feel Safety Induced by Applied Mathematics in Automotive Industry Toward Autonomous Automation


Founders of TOYOTA dreamed “Flying Nimbus” that is a magical flying cloud in Chinese classic literature “Journey to the West, Saiyuki.” When I was told about this look-like very childish dream by Dr. Shoichiro Toyoda at the visit to Toyota Central R&D Laboratories while I was working in University of Michigan, I was so impressed by the dream that he storied through Flying Nimbus. It is a sustainable safe and feel safe vehicle made from water and air! Dr. Toyoda asked me to lead advanced research for Flying Nimbus with extremely charming smile. Researchers must be realistic, but they are so dreamy, too.

In this talk, various struggling stories would be presented with so many failing so few successful trials to implement this notion in real vehicles applying all possible science and technology, especially computer related applied mathematics. Through this dreamy venture, we have leaned enormous difference between safety and feel safety together with clear distinction between personal and social acceptance. Applied mathematics, especially computer related science and technology including artificial intelligence, would be a key potential remedy to close the gaps mentioned.

Prof. Padmanabhan Seshaiyer


Understanding the Dimensions of Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) across the globe in Applied Mathematics Research and Education


In this talk, the participants will engage in learning about integrating equitable practices for advancing their understanding of racial equity in applied mathematical research, education and outreach. Discussions will include the impact of unconscious bias which is influenced by cultural stereotypes that affect how individuals evaluate and treat one another. These often continue to impact both universities and workplace environments across the globe. Another important discussion will include the different perspectives of justice, equity, diversity and inclusion (JEDI) in the applied mathematics community which are often exhibited by power inclusive behaviors in different cultures. We will also discuss effective use of applied mathematics tools and techniques to address systemic inequality and to reduce variations in judgment across humans that require more than just the adoption of the right technical approaches to the right data sets about people, institutions, communities, and systems. Finally, we hope that the session will help to empower participants with the latest scientific findings on the learning characteristics of underrepresented populations, understand the different approaches to JEDI across the globe, gain awareness of cultural differences and employ an inclusive, equitable and culturally relevant pedagogy in applied mathematics education and research.
Dr. Seshaiyer is the Chair of the SIAM Diversity Advisory Committee that consists of distinguished members from the Applied Mathematics community across the globe who assist SIAM in addressing policy issues that arise in relationship to underrepresented groups. As the Chair, he helps to oversee the working group for the Workshop Celebrating Diversity that is held each year at the SIAM Annual Meetings. He continues to promote the much-needed awareness of justice, equity, diversity and inclusion (JEDI) across the globe through his work as he prepares students to become critical thinkers and global problem solvers in applied mathematics.

Brief Biography

Prof. Padmanabhan (Padhu) Seshaiyer is a tenured full Professor of Mathematical Sciences at George Mason University, USA and works in the broad areas of Computational and Applied Mathematics, Computational Data Science, Computational Biomechanics and STEM Education. During the last two decades, he has initiated and directed a variety of educational programs including faculty development, post-graduate, graduate and undergraduate research, K-12 outreach, teacher professional development, and enrichment programs to foster the interest of students and teachers at all levels to apply well-developed research concepts, to fundamental applications arising in STEM disciplines. He has served in multiple leadership positions including serving as the Chair for the Diversity Advisory Committee for SIAM, Chair-Elect for US National Academies Commission for Mathematics Instruction, Associate Director in Applied Mathematics for the Mathematics Alliance Program and an appointed member of the STEM Advisory Board to the Office of the Governor of Virginia. He has also served as a former Program Director at the US National Science Foundation. Over the last two decades, he has won several prestigious national and international awards and honors for his contributions to research, teaching and service. Most notably in 2019, he was selected as “Figures that Matter” and was awarded an honorary doctorate from Vrije Universiteit Brussel for being a committed scientist who transcend the boundaries of their own disciplines and to personalities that have been at the frontiers of societal change. In April 2022, SIAM spotlighted him as one of the most influential mathematicians in the community during the Mathematics and Statistics Awareness Month.