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International Conference on Approximation Theory and Beyond

in conjunction with the

35th Shanks Lecture

Celebrating Larry Schumaker’s 80th Birthday


the 35th anniversary of the journal Constructive Approximation

May 15-18, 2023
Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee, USA

About the Conference

The aim of the conference is to bring together researchers from diverse areas of approximation theory, to stimulate international collaboration, and to promote interaction and the exchange of ideas. We welcome the participation of both pure and applied mathematicians working in approximation theory from all around the world. We especially encourage early-career researchers (including students) as well as women and underrepresented minorities to attend.

The conference will be held in conjunction with the 35th Annual Shanks Lecture, to be given by Professor Wolfgang Dahmen (University of South Carolina and RWTH Aachen University). The Lecture will be on Tuesday, May 16, at 3:40pm, in Wilson Hall. See the abstract of Professor Dahmen’s lecture. The prestigious Shanks Lecture Series is organized annually by the Department of Mathematics of Vanderbilt University, honoring Baylis and Olivia Shanks. The late Professor Baylis Shanks was chairman of the Department from 1955 through 1969. Previous Shanks Lecturers can be seen here.

Stevenson Professor Larry SchumakerThe conference will also provide an excellent opportunity to celebrate Professor Larry Schumaker‘s recent 80th birthday. The conference will honor his many outstanding contributions to approximation theory, his unselfish devotion to the promotion of approximation in the mathematical community, and his unceasing commitment to the education of the younger generation of mathematicians. The meeting will also be an occasion to celebrate the field of approximation theory at large, to highlight and compliment its past achievements, and to explore its future.

Constructive ApproximationIn addition, the conference will provide a forum to recognize and salute the 35th anniversary of the journal Constructive Approximation (click here for a brief history of the journal). This highly ranked journal is published and distributed internationally by Springer, with the editorial office located at Vanderbilt in the Center for Constructive Approximation within the Department of Mathematics.


The meeting will feature several plenary speakers who will give survey lectures on topics of special current interest.

The topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Abstract approximation
  • Approximation with constraints
  • Classical approximation
  • Complex approximation
  • Compressed sensing
  • Extremal problems
  • Interpolation and smoothing
  • Curves and surfaces
  • Machine learning
  • Multiresolution analysis
  • Neural networks
  • Nonlinear approximation
  • Numerical PDEs
  • Orthogonal polynomials
  • Radial basis functions
  • Scattered data modeling
  • Splines
  • Subdivision and refinable functions
  • Image and signal processing
  • Wavelets and Frames
  • Applications

We invite you to contribute a talk in any of the above areas. The open nature of the meeting provides an opportunity for everyone to present their results. Therefore, we will keep contributed talks short (their anticipated duration is 20 minutes) in order to be able to schedule a large number of them in our four day format.

Statue of Cornelius Vanderbilt
Statue of Cornelius Vanderbilt

We also encourage the participants of the conference, particularly our more senior colleagues, to consider organizing a minisymposium on a subject of current interest. Ideally, a minisymposium should consist of six or twelve speakers. The anticipated duration of minisymposium talks is 20 minutes.

To learn more about the conference, please explore the links in the menu above.