Study Groups enable the rapid generation and refinement of ideas, through direct contact between industrialists and mathematicians. They typically last one week and involve a group of between 6 and 8 companies presenting individual problems and challenges to an academic ‘workforce', who then choose which problem(s) they wish to contribute to. The conclusions are captured in presentations and subsequent written reports, which provide a long-term record and wider dissemination.
The Study Groups' unique format has provided companies in a range of industries access to world-class academic thinking that has driven innovation over many years. They are an internationally recognised highlight of UK applied mathematics. Study Groups have been held annually in the UK for 40 years, and are now part of a European series and a wider International programme involving at least 15 countries. In fact, they are now also held annually in the USA, Canada, Denmark, the Netherlands, China and Australia. Additional European collaboration is achieved by the overseas participation in the UK Study Group, particularly of younger researchers. Furthermore, many of the most committed UK participants are in demand as invited international experts at Study Group overseas.