WAGS Spring 2011

Funded by the MRC and National Science Foundation

April 9-10, 2011
Stanford University

Click for Stanford, California Forecast

Jim Bryan
(University of British Columbia)
What is the probability that two randomly chosen matrices with entries in a finite field commute?: On the motivic class of the commuting variety and related problems.
Tommaso de Fernex
(University of Utah)
A general framework for singularities.
Sándor Kovács
(University of Washington)
What is…a higher dimensional stable family?
Matthew Satriano
(University of Michigan)
Stacky Resolutions of Singular Schemes
Anthony Várilly-Alvarado
(Rice University)
Transcendental obstructions to rational points on general K3 surfaces
Roya Beheshti Zavareh
(Washington University in St. Louis)
Spaces of rational curves on hypersurfaces

About WAGS

The Western Algebraic Geometry Seminar traces its origins back to the Utah - UCLA Algebraic Geometry Seminar started in 1989 by H. Clemens, D. Gieseker, M. Green, J. Kollár, and R. Lazarsfeld. Later on, it became the Utah - UCLA - Chicago Algebraic Geometry Seminar. Sadly, as senior figures moved east, the original WAGS faded away.

In 2002, WAGS was resurrected. Our goal is to have a twice-yearly meeting of algebraic geometers in the western half of the United States and Canada, with ample time for chatting, as well as a good number of research talks. The conference has been consistently attracting over 50 participants.

WAGS is partially supported by a grant from the NSF. Our policy is not to fund senior participants; we hope that the conference will be attractive enough that senior algebraic geometers will come of their own volition. However, we try to fund all graduate students and unfunded post-docs (from the western two time zones of the continent).

The institutions currently participating in WAGS are the University of Arizona, Colorado State University, Stanford University, the University of British Columbia, the University of California at Berkeley, the University of California at Riverside, the University of California at Los Angeles the University of Utah, the University of Washington, and more.

Long term planning for WAGS is currently being organized by Ravi Vakil, Aaron Bertram, Sándor Kovács, Renzo Cavalieri and Sebastian Casalaina-Martin.

The next meeting will be: Fall 2011 at Colorado State University.


WAGS Spring 2011 will take place at the
Department of Mathematics
Stanford University
Stanford, California

The mathematics department is located in Sloan Hall, which is Building 380. Breaks will occur in the lounge of the mathematics department (380 Lng), which is on the second floor. Lunch will be provided in the courtyard of the mathematics department (380 CY). The talks will occur in Building 370, room 370. This is next door to the mathematics department, and is easily located using the campus map.

On Friday, April 8, some of the local organizers will congregate at the Empire Tap Room from 8:30pm onwards. Everyone is welcome to join them.
Saturday, April 9th
Sunday, April 10th
8:00-9:00 380 Lng
Registration, coffee
9:00-9:05 370-370
Talk: Sándor Kovács
9:55-10:30 380 Lng
Talk: Jim Bryan
380 CY
Talk: Roya Beheshti Zavareh
380 Lng
Talk: Anthony Várilly-Alvarado
380 Lng
The Ear
Reception and conference dinner
8:30-9:00 380 Lng
Talk: Matthew Satriano
380 Lng
Talk: Tommaso de Fernex

On Sunday, April 10th, at the conclusion of the conference, some of the local organizers will congregate at the CoHo from noon onwards. Everyone is welcome to join them.


Daniel Erman, Jack Hall, Jun Li, Christian Liedtke, and Ravi Vakil.

If you have any questions, send us an e-mail to spring11@wagsymposium.org.

Our postal address is
Stanford University
Department of Mathematics
Building 380
Stanford, CA 94305


Please, register as soon as you know that you will be attending. Just send an e-mail to spring11@wagsymposium.org stating your name, position, and if you will be applying for financial support please follow the instructions below.

Financial Assistance

Thanks to the generous support of the National Science Foundation (through Colorado State), funding is available for some graduate students and unfunded postdoctoral research working in the Western 2 time zones of the United States and Canada. Potential participants interested in funding should apply by sending an e-mail to spring11@wagsymposium.org by March 4, 2011. Please include your status (grad student or post-doc), and if a grad student, the name of your Ph.D. advisor, and your year in the program. Please include your sex so we can easily match up applicants to share a room. Alternatively, or additionally, include name(s) of other applicants with whom you'd like to share a room.


Participants are expected to lodge at the Sheraton Hotel in Palo Alto, where we have set aside 25 double rooms and 10 single rooms. There is a negotiated rate of $109 per night, which is obtainable by booking from the hotel directly and mentioning WAGS and the mathematics department.

We would appreciate it if graduate students share rooms whenever possible. If you would like the organizers to find someone for you to share with, please don't hesitate to let us know.

If you expect to be supported, please do not make a reservation until we confirm support.


There are various methods of travel to the Bay Area and Stanford University.

Getting to the Mathematics Department from the Sheraton Hotel in Palo Alto

To get to campus on weekends, it is necessary to walk along Palm Drive, which will take approximately 25 minutes. On Saturday night, there is the O-line Marguerite shuttle (which is free), which can be caught from campus to the Caltrain station at Palo Alto.

Getting to the Sheraton Hotel in Palo Alto

San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and San Jose International Airport (SJC) are both well served by ground transportation. SJC is 18mi from campus, and is the recommended airport. SFO is 33mi from campus.

To get from a Bay Area airport to the Sheraton Hotel in Palo Alto, these are the two recommended methods.

Public transportation:
From SFO: Catch BART to Millbrae station. Depending on the time of day, you may have to make a transfer at San Bruno station (there are clear announcements for this). Once at Millbrae, cross to the southbound Caltrain platform, and catch the train to Palo Alto. You must purchase a Caltrain ticket before you board the train.
From SJC: Catch the VTA Airport Flyer to Santa Clara Caltrain station. Catch the train northbound to Palo Alto.

Southeast shuttle and Super shuttle both serve SJC and SFO airports. You should book your shuttle trips (to and from Stanford) in advance.

Driving to Stanford University

If you would like to drive, the highways 280 and 101 are near to campus, with well signed exits to Stanford University.

Parking is generally free on weekends.

Local Information

Campus map



THIS WAS COPIED FROM http://math.stanford.edu/~jhall/spring11_wags