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About MRI

MRI Board - 2023-2024

MRI Programs

Travel Policy

The MRI Board administers the Faculty Travel Program (FTP). The funds for this program are in a distinct account, separate from the primary MRI account, and the primary MRI account will not be used to augment the FTP account. The outline of the program is the following:

  1. A faculty member, including post-docs and faculty from the Branch campuses, can request for review and approval up to $800 of professional travel support in a fiscal year (July 1 to June 30) for travel from OSU to outside conferences. This does not include lecturers. Postdocs having their assignments ending in August can still have faculty travel funds until it ends.  Emeritus faculty requests will be made on a case-by-case basis.
  2. These funds can be used to support travel of the faculty members themselves, but also to support travel for their graduate students or post-docs.
  3. There is a limited budget for faculty travel funds each fiscal year. Faculty travel funds can be awarded upon request as long as funding is still available.
  4. Approval and pre-travel paperwork must be completed prior to travel.
  5. There is no rollover of funds from one year to the next.
  6. If on sabbatical, no funds approved to travel back to OSU.
  7. Requests for FTP should be addressed to Sandy Masters with a copy to Matthew Kahle.



  1. Each MRI supported seminar should have an official contact person. This person is to be a Regular Faculty (i.e. tenured or tenure track or senior faculty that are non-tenured only by reason of immigration status). This person will be responsible for the budget and for reporting functions as outlined below.
  2. At the end of the year, each MRI supported seminar should give to the MRI a list of all speakers that received MRI support, as well as titles of talks and dates. This will become part of the permanent record of the MRI.
  3. The standard MRI support for each seminar is typically $5000 per fiscal year (July 1 - June 30).
  4. There is no rollover of funds from one year to another.
  5. Proposals for seminar support should be addressed to Sandy Masters with a copy to Matthew Kahle prior to the beginning of each fiscal year for review and approval in the annual MRI budget.


Short and Long Term Visitors

The MRI provides support (typically lodging and per diem) for short term visitors, up to two weeks. Often a seminar speaker is invited to extend the visit beyond the 3 days covered by the Seminar budget. Such a visitor will receive additional support from the Short Term Visitors budget.

Long Term Visitors typically receive travel and local expenses, but no honorarium. Such visitors are requested to be here for at least two weeks.

Applications should be submitted at least a few weeks prior to the proposed Short Term Visitor visit. There is typically a request sent out soliciting Long Term Visitor requests in the Fall of each fiscal year.

The applications should be sent via the on-line MRI Visitor Proposal Form.


Distinguished Visitors

MRI Distinguished Visitors are invited to the department for periods ranging from two weeks to one quarter. Exceptional cases of one-week visits will also be considered. The activities of these visitors will be arranged to include graduate student component such as mini-course, or colloquium and seminar talks.

The MRI Board will select each Fall a group of Distinguished Visitors to be invited during the academic year. Initial selection will be made around November 1.

To the extent that funding remains available, additional applications, with no specific deadline, will be considered during the remainder of the year.

Applications by an individual or a group of faculty should include CV, the proposed dates for the visit, and a brief description of the research benefits to the department.

The approved Distinguished Visitors will receive full support (travel, hotel, and per diem) as well as an honorarium, in exceptional cases.

Request for and suggestions for Distinguished Visitors should be sent to Matthew Kahle with a copy to Sandy Masters.

Applications should be submitted via the on-line MRI Visitor Proposal Form.


Radó and Zassenhaus Distinguished Lecturers

The Radó Lectures were established to honor the memory of Tibor Radó who was a member of the department during 1930-1965. These lectures are to be given in some area of analysis, broadly interpreted. The Zassenhaus Lectures were established to honor the memory of Hans Zassenhaus who was a member of the department from 1963-1982. These lectures are to be given in some area of algebra, broadly interpreted. The Radó Lecture and Zassenhaus Lecture committees select the lecturers each year.

The MRI will support each year both the Radó and Zassenhaus Distinguished lecturers. Faculty are encouraged to send suggestions to Matthew Kahle with a copy to Sandy Masters.



The MRI encourages and supports conferences that are to take place at OSU. A proposal should describe the content of the conference, the proposed dates, and provide a list of organizers, and of potential (or confirmed) participants.

The MRI Board will respond very quickly to provide seed money, and thus enable initial planning and timely application for external funding.

It is expected that the conference organizers will seek external funding for their conferences

The Proposals should be sent to Matthew Kahle with a copy to Sandy Masters, normally at least 9 months before the starting date of the conference.


Special Year Programs

The MRI has been running Special Year Programs with partial support from the NSF. The themes have been:

  • 2008 – 2009 Analytic and Algebraic Geometry: Multiplier Ideas
  • 2009 – 2010 Noncommutative Geometry and Applications to Number Theory
  • 2010 – 2011 Topology and Geometric Group Theory
  • 2011 – 2012 Interactions Between Ergodic Theory, Number Theory, and Noncommutative Geometry

The MRI seeks suggestions for annual themes, in particular themes that connect different areas in the mathematical sciences.


Faculty Stimulus Program

This was a three-year program, beginning September 2010, designed to encourage research and involvement in the PhD program of tenure or tenure track faculty members who are research active but who may have been slowing down as measured by publications and the number of their PhD students. The group of faculty members that would be eligible for this program consisted of faculty with no grant support. The program provided funding of at least 5K a year for two years which may be used to bring short term visitors, travel to conferences, or travel to collaborate or consult with a research program. Those who wished to participate in this program submitted a two year plan with specific goals. Applications did not need to exceed one or two pages. Participants submitted a summary report by the end of each year. The MRI aimed to help faculty apply for external funding by providing supporting activities or matching funds that make external funding more likely.

The MRI Board was charged with deciding on a case-by-case basis whether a faculty member was eligible for this program based on his/her research activity and the amount of MRI funding available.