The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) will host the 53rd Annual Spring Topology and Dynamical Systems Conference, March 14-16, 2019 in Birmingham, Alabama. The Spring Topology and Dynamical Systems Conference (STDC) is one of the longest standing regular conferences in general topology, having started in 1967 and continuing as an annual conference. It attracts participants nationally and internationally. Dynamical systems was added as part of the conference in 1987, when it was held at UAB, and has remained as an integral part ever since. The conference provides opportunities for participants to attend talks outside their specialty, to interact with mathematicians in contiguous fields, and to be inspired by prominent mathematicians in topology and dynamics. Over the years, the STDC has become broader, and now includes continuum theory, dynamical systems, geometric group theory, geometric topology and set-theoretic topology.

Hotel Reservations

Hotel reservations for the 53rd Spring Topology & Dynamical Systems Conference are now available. To make your reservation or find additional information, visit the conference booking page.

The conference usually attracts 150 to 200 participants, and has often attracted over 200 participants. We have every reason to believe, based upon past experience, that in Birmingham the conference will attract over 200 participants. The conference has been one of the foremost forums in which recent results in topology and dynamics are presented and questions of active research interest are posed. In addition to traditional topics covered at the conference we will invite a new area which has strong connections to participants at the conference: topology and graph theory, including large data sets. This component will be spear headed by Paul Gartside.

While the special sessions are intended to highlight the strength and diversity of the areas represented, they also will promote the unity of these areas by providing an opportunity for interaction among the participants in the various special sessions. To further promote unity and interaction, there will be 14 semi-plenary talks of 50-minutes in two parallel sessions, and 6 plenary talks of 50 minutes for a total of 20 invited speakers. It is our intention that these talks in large part emphasize interaction of the research agendas of two or more conference areas.

Special Sessions

To ensure strong and balanced representation in each of the areas central to the conference, we propose to have two organizers for each of six special sessions. The areas and organizers who have agreed to participate are listed below.

Continuum Theory

Facilitators: Chris Mouron and Gerardo Acosta

Continuum theory is a well-established area of topology that recently has seen a revival. The area is penetrating in adjacent areas, in particular dynamical systems, and old problems are finally being solved (i.e., the classification of all homogeneous plane continua). It is always well represented at this conference with a large number of international participants from Europe, Canada and Mexico.

Dynamical Systems

Facilitators: Lori Alvin and Nikita Selinger

The special session will continue to explore and encourage the rich interplay between continuum theory, topological dynamics and complex dynamics, in which continuum theoretic methods see fruitful application to the study of Julia sets of complex analytic maps, dynamics on trees and these interactions inspires interesting new questions for continuum theory.

Geometric Topology

Facilitators: Craig Guilbault, Greg Friedman, and Bena Tshishiku

Geometric topology is the study of manifolds and maps between them. This active and vital area of topology has been strongly represented at this conference since the Bing era.

Geometric Group Theory

Facilitators: Mark Haulmark

Geometric group theory, is an active and relatively new area which became a clearly identifiable branch of mathematics in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Geometric group theory closely interacts with low-dimensional topology, hyperbolic geometry, algebraic topology, computational group theory and differential geometry. Geometric Group Theory is a more recent but active area at this conference which started with the classification of Menger manifolds by Bestvina and continues to this day.

Set Theoretic Topology

Facilitators: Ted Porter and Lynne Yengulap

Set Theoretic Topology is always very strongly represented at this conference. This session covers a blend of set theory and general topology which invigorates both fields.

Topology and Graph Theory

Facilitators: Paul Gartside and Ben Espinoza

In this special session, we plan to explore exciting new avenues of research in graph theory and its links to topology. We will select speakers with expertise in these applications, to bring them together with other faculty, post-doctoral fellows, and students with interests in topology. Our aim is to reveal and highlight new problems and lines of research that will be accessible to and of interest to topologists, and which are inspired by and will have applications to these new fields of study. Examples of new such areas of research in topology include compactification of graphs, persistent homology, and computational topology.

The special session organizers will be strongly encouraged to identify promising young researchers and graduate students, as well as senior researchers, for speakers in 20 minute talks running in six parallel sessions. Up to 27 talks are slated for each area, with some room for expansion, if needed. Every effort will be made to ensure fair representation among speakers of women and minority groups. Contributed talks in these sessions will also be solicited and welcomed. Organizers will be advised to provide periods for discussion of open problems in the areas they represent.

Invited Speakers

We are very pleased that the following mathematicians have accepted our invitation to give a talk at this conference.

  • Carolyn Abbott
    (UC-Berkeley), Geometric Group Theory
  • Dana Bartosova
    (Florida), Set Theoretic topology
  • Jan Boronski
    (Ostravska, Czech Republic), Continuum Theory
  • Will Brian
    (Baylor), Set Theoretic topology
  • Nathan Carlson
    (California Lutheran), Set Theoretic topology
  • Mauricio Chacon
    (UNAM, Mexico), Continuum Theory
  • James Kelly
    (Christopher Newport), Continuum Theory
  • Mikhail Lyubich
    (Stony Brook), Dynamical Systems
  • Jonathan Meddaugh
    (UNC-Charlotte), Dynamical Systems
  • Michal Misiurewicz
    (IUPUI), Dynamical Systems
  • Max Pitz
    (Hamburg), Topology and Graph theory
  • Andrew Putman
    (Notre Dame), Geometric Topology
  • Genevieve Walsh
    (Tufts), Geometric Group Theory




Talks will be held in a single classroom building with large rooms (4 rooms seating 80-140) for the parallel sessions, and an auditorium (seating 300+) one block away for the plenary talks. In addition to scheduled talks, smaller rooms in the classroom building will be available for informal discussions among groups of researchers. There is also a spacious break room and a computer lab for email and computer access in the classroom building.


Full details will be added in the coming months. Information of the conference has been posted on the Topology Atlas and will be posted on the appropriate web pages for each of the conference areas. The conference will be included in the conference listings of the American Mathematical Society, the Canadian Mathematical Society, and the Sociedad Matematica Mexicana.