My 2018-19 sabbatical: September - December

I was fortunate to be granted sabbatical leave for the 2018-19 academic year, a blessed opportunity to catch up on research and writing after my three-year term as department chair. As I suspected I will not be taking another sabbatical before retirement, I rolled the dice and applied for a Fulbright Award,in particular a Global Scholar award, which allows you to vist up to three countries for at least three months each, in at least two dofferent hemispheres. A bit surprisingly, it was successful. Under that grant I visited Geoff Whittle and Dillon Mayhew and Victoria University of Wellington in Wellington, New Zealand, for ten weeks in early 2019 (summer into autumn), and then, after returning to Flagstaff (on the spring equinox) for two weeks, I visited Clément Dupont and Thomas Haettel at L'Institut Montpellieraine Alexandre Grothendieck (IMAG) at Université de Montpellier, Montpellier, France (between Toulouse and Marseille on the Mediterranean), for a little over ten weeks in the second quarter of 2019 (spring into summer), returning home on the summer solstice. While in Montpellier I took a week to visit Paolo Bellingeri and John Guaschi at the Université de Normandie-Caen in Normandy and spent three days with Henry Crapo in La Vacquerie (near to Montpellier in the countryside).

In the Fall, I had invitations to lecture for a week in a summer school for graduate students and post-docs, organized by graduate students, at Ruhr-Universität Bochum (RUB) in Bochum, Germany, and at a matroid theory conference at Centre International Recherche Mathématiques (CIRM) in Marseille, France, two weeks apart, in September. I parlayed those invitations and a generous research award from my department into a 6-week, 6-city tour visiting colleagues: Dublin, Bochum, Bremen, Marseille, Fribourg, and Dublin again - see below for details.

It was a very successful year: I made substantial progress, both positive and negative, on many projects, and learned a lot from my various hosts, and finished several complicated papers. And I got to see some new parts of the world, meet many interesting people, and have many unique and interesting experiences, mathematical, musical, social, and educational. And, I'm really happy to be back home in Flagstaff, and excited to get back to teaching ...

Here is a listing of the major events, mathematical, musical, and otherwise, during the year. It's unfinished, but I figured I'd post what I've done so far, and continue editing as I have time.