HISTORY OF THE CONFERENCES ON BANACH ALGEBRAS

 

The First Conference: Los Angeles, 1974

 

The first conference took place at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), from 1 to 12 of July 1974; the title was Homomorphisms and derivations from Banach Algebras. The conference was the idea of Bill Bade of Berkeley and Phil Curtis of UCLA. The number of participants in this first meeting, at 21, was quite modest and included:  R. Arens (UCLA), W. G. Bade (Berkeley), A. Browder (Brown), P.C. Curtis, Jr. (UCLA), H.G. Dales (Leeds), F. K. Dashiell (UCLA), T.W. Gamelin (UCLA), S. Grabiner (Pomona), D. Larson (Berkeley), K.B. Laursen (Copenhagen), J. P. McClure (Winnipeg), D. Marshall (UCLA), R.T. Moore (Washington), A.G. O’Farrell (UCLA), S. Scheinberg (Irvine), H.J. Schultz (Michigan-Dearborn), T. Slobko (Occidental College), J.D. Stein (UCLA), M.P. Thomas (Berkeley), J. Tripp (Claremont), and W. Zelazko (Warsaw).

 

The Second Conference: Leeds, UK, 1976

 

The Conference was organized by H. G. Dales and entitled Conference on Automatic Continuity; the lectures were given in the single week 14-18 June, 1976, in Leeds.  Garth Dales and Jean Esterle both outlined their independent solutions to the problem of Kaplansky on the existence of discontinuous homomorphisms from C(X).

 

The Third Conference: Long Beach, California, 1981

 

The main part of the conference took place from 17 to 31 July, 1981; it was attended by 32 mathematicians.  The title was Radical Banach algebras and automatic continuity.  The conference was organized by John Bachar, who managed to find some money.  The proceedings of the conference were produced as a Springer Lecture Notes; some articles in this volume are still very valuable

 

The Fourth Conference: Copenhagen, 1985

 

The Conference was organized by Kjeld Laursen in Copenhagen, Denmark.  The title of the conference was Derivations from Banach algebras, and it took place in the University of Copenhagen from 15 to 26 July, 1985. There were about 20 participants.

 

The Fifth Conference: Berkeley, California, 1986

 

The Conference, entitled Workshop on Banach algebras, was organized by Bill Bade and Phil Curtis in Berkeley from 21 July to 1 August 1986 immediately before the International Congress of Mathematicians which took place also in Berkeley from 3 to 11 August, 1986.

 

The Sixth Conference: Leeds, 1987

 

The Conference, entitled Automatic continuity and radical Banach algebras took place in Leeds from June 23 to July 3, 1987. It was organized by H. G. Dales as a part of a special semester on Banach algebras. The high point of the conference was Marc Thomas's presentation of his solution of the Singer-Wermer problem for commutative Banach algebras.

 

The Seventh Conference: Berkeley, California, 1988

 

The conference was called Workshop on Banach algebras; it took place in Berkeley from 6 to 22 July, 1988.  Again the Bade-Curtis NSF grant covered most of the living expenses.

 

The Eighth Conference: Canberra, 1989

 

The conference was organized by Rick Loy and entitled Automatic continuity and radical Banach algebras; it took place at Australian National University in Canberra from 2 to 21 January 1989.  This conference was noteworthy because it was the first which a colleague from Russia could attend - this was Alexander Helemskii, who gave a series of lectures on the cohomology of Banach algebras. The proceedings of the conference were published under the auspices of the Centre for Mathematical Sciences in Canberra.

 

The Ninth Conference: Berkeley, California, 1990

 

The third and final workshop that Bill Bade and Phil Curtis organized took place in Berkeley from 23 July to 3 August, 1990.  Now the title varied a little: it became Third Berkeley Banach algebra workshop. About 22 people from outside Berkeley attended the meeting.

 

The Tenth Conference: Cambridge, 1991

 

The conference was organized by Graham Allan, with the assistance of Tom Ransford, at the University of Cambridge, England; it took place from 1 to 12 July, 1991 under the title Cambridge Banach algebras symposium. There are now signs of increased attendance: about 40 people from outside Cambridge came to the meeting.

 

The Eleventh Conference: Winnipeg, 1993

 

The Conference was organized by Fereidoun Ghahramani and J. Peter McClure of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.  Their chosen title was Banach algebras and amenability, and the conference took place from 3 to 13 August, 1993. Again about 40 mathematicians came to the conference from outside the host university.

 

The Twelfth Conference: Newcastle, England, 1995

 

The Conference was organized by Barry Johnson and Michael White at the University of Newcastle, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, in north-east England.  The title of the conference was Banach algebras ’95, and it took place from 17 to 28 July 1995. It was at this conference that the numbers attending again took a large upwards bound: there were about 100 participants.

 

The Thirteenth Conference: Blaubeuren, Germany, 1997

 

The was called Banach algebras 1997 and took place in the Heinrich Fabri Institute, Blaubeuren, Germany, from 20 July to 3 August. The organizers were Ernst Albrecht and Martin Mathieu. Attendance had to be limited by the numbers of room available; it was about 70 mathematicians.

 

The Fourteenth Conference: Pomona, California, 1999

 

This meeting was organized by Sandy Grabiner and Marc Thomas, and it took place from July 26 till August 6, 1999; there were 78 participants. A high point was the presentation by Charles Read of his example of commutative, radical, amenable Banach algebra.

 

The Fifteenth Conference: Odense, Denmark, 2001

 

Our conferences returned to Denmark in 2001.  The official title of this conference was 15th International Conference on Banach algebras, BALTICON 2001 – Banach algebra theory in context, and the organizers were Niels Gronbaek, Kjeld Laursen, Niels Laustsen, and Thomas Vils Petersen. There were approximately 80 participants.

 

The Sixteenth Conference: Edmonton, 2003

 

The Conference took place in Edmonton, Canada between July 27 and August 9, 2003 under the title: Banach algebras and their applications. The conference was organized by Anthony To-Ming Lau and Volker Runde. Attendance reached a new record, with 136 participants. The proceedings, edited by A. Lau and V. Runde, were published by the AMS as "Banach Algebras and Their Applications" as Volume 363 of their Contemporary Mathematics series. More information is available at the conference web page at: http://www.math.ualberta.ca/~ba03/

 

The Seventeenth Conference: Bordeaux, 2005

 

The Conference took place in Bordeaux, France between July 3 and July 13, 2005 and was organized by Jean Esterle. The title was: Banach algebras and their applications. The number of participants was 151. More information is available at the conference web page at: http://www.math.u-bordeaux.fr/ba2005/

 

The Eighteenth Conference: Quebec, 2007

 

The Conference took place at the Laval University in Quebec City, Canada between July 4 and July 12, 2007. The title was: Banach algebras 2007. The conference was organized by Frederic Gourdeau and Thomas Ransford. More information is available at the conference web page at: http://newton.mat.ulaval.ca/ba07/index.php