Einstein Center – Topic Development Lab

Mathematics is not a static field of knowledge, but rather a multifaceted, dynamic, and expanding discipline, in which areas seemingly far from applications suddenly become indispensable and applications stimulate challenging foundational mathematical research. Moreover, many application-driven mathematical developments are also motivated and triggered by developments in other scientific and humanities fields.


The research agenda for MATH+ has not been fixed in advance for several years, but is designed to be dynamic. New fields and opportunities emerge over time, or need to be actively developed. The Topic Development Lab (TDL) is a central part of MATH+ that, based on this dynamic view of mathematics, provides a platform for developing new topics, for building bridges between different fields of mathematics (e.g., between “pure” and “applied”), and for reaching out to other areas of science and potential cooperation partners outside of mathematics. The main activity of the TDL consists of Thematic Einstein Semesters funded by the Einstein Foundation Berlin.


The current Thematic Einstein Semester (Winter 2022/23):


Scales of Temporality: Modeling Time and Predictability in the Literary and in the Mathematical Sciences


The collaborative Thematic Einstein Forum Scales of Temporality: Modeling Time and Predictability in the Literary and the Mathematical Sciences is organized by the clusters of excellence MATH+ and Temporal Communities. It aims to explore shared interests, common grounds and similar problems both the mathematical sciences and the Humanities, particularly the philologies and the literary studies, entail.  

To enable this interdisciplinary approach, we want to address, compare and contrast mathematical and literary modes of time. How, for instance, do stories narrate succession, causation and the probable, and how do different modes of temporality inform dynamical systems and probability theory and their applicability? In addition, we will explore the possibilities of collaborations within the Digital Humanities, i.e. the systematic use of computational and algorithmic methods and resources in the humanities.