BLACKSBURG, Va., Dec. 9, 2008 – Reinhard Laubenbacher, professor at the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute and the Department of Mathematics at Virginia Tech, has been appointed vice president for science policy of the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM).
The vice president for science policy is a new position strengthening SIAM’s commitment to engaging different stakeholders in wider discussions on science policy. The vice president will have a seat on the SIAM Council.
SIAM is a 12,000-strong international community of applied mathematicians whose mission is to build cooperation between mathematics and the worlds of science and technology. In addition to making sure that key information on science policy and funding reaches SIAM’s membership, Laubenbacher will help brief policy makers on issues related to SIAM’s expertise.
SIAM maintains links with several organizations whose role is to coordinate science policy or to advocate for science funding. Laubenbacher will work with SIAM staff and external consultants in Washington to coordinate governmental affairs, legislative liaison, and information exchange on science policy issues.
SIAM’s Science Policy initiative monitors developments in the federal and state governments and the scientific community. SIAM also strives to promote the visibility of the applied mathematics community and of SIAM in the federal government and the scientific community.
Laubenbacher’s first two-year term as vice president for science policy begins on Jan. 1, 2009.
Laubenbacher has been a professor at the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute and a professor in the Department of Mathematics at Virginia Tech since 2001. He is also an affiliate faculty member in the School of Biomedical Engineering Sciences at Virginia Tech and Wake Forest University and an adjunct professor in the Department of Cancer Biology at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C.
Prior to these appointments, Laubenbacher was an assistant and associate professor and professor of mathematics at New Mexico State University. He has also served as visiting faculty for Los Alamos National Laboratories since 1999, was a member of the Mathematical Science Research Institute at Berkeley in 1998, and was a visiting associate professor at Cornell University in 1990 and 1993.
Laubenbacher directs the Applied Discrete Mathematics Group at the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute. This group is interested in the development and application of bioinformatics tools using discrete mathematics, dynamical systems theory, and symbolic computation. Methods from combinatorics and combinatorial topology, as well as computational polynomial algebra are of particular interest.