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Newsletter, February, 2019


  • Cheryl was guest speaker at the MAWA conference dinner (Mathematical Association of Western Australia) on November 19, 2018. It was the 60th anniversary of the establishment of MAWA, and at this dinner the MAWA President, Ms Paula McMahon, announced that Cheryl would be the inaugural Patron of MAWA, with the role of promoting the importance and enjoyment of mathematics in education for students and teachers, and to advocate for the improvement of the status and training of mathematics educators in WA.

  • Sabina Pannek passed her PhD Viva at RWTH Aachen University. in December Her supervisors were Gerhard Hiss and Cheryl Praeger. Congratulations Sabina!

  • Cheryl was the Australian voting delegate at the General Assembly of AASSA, the Association of Academies and Societies of Sciences in Asia, held in , October 28-31, Bangkok, Thailand, in conjunction with the AASSA-IAP workshop “Promoting role of scientists and media in science and health communication: From Policy to Practice”. She was re-elected to the AASSA Executive Board.

  • Cheryl attended the Launch of Sydney University Mathematical Research Institute (SMRI); and before it she attended the inaugural meeting of the SMRI Advisory Board on November 12.

  • Cheryl had a fellowship at the Hausdorff Mathematics Institute, Bonn, Germany, as part of the Trimester Program "Logic and Algorithms in Group Theory".

  • Dan Hawtin, former PhD student of Cheryl and Michael, has accepted a postdoc at Rijeka, Croatia to work with Dean Crnković.

  • Cheryl will speak at a day long Women in Mathematics event hosed by the Mathematical Sciences Institue at ANU Wednesday February 27.

  • Yian Xu's PhD thesis was passed with minor corrections - congratulations Yian!

  • Cheryl will represent the Australian Academy of Science at a meeting of Science Academy Presidents of S20 countries at the Science Council of Japan, Tokyo on March 6, 2019.

  • Cheryl will be Guest of Honour at the first AGM of the Sri Lanka National Chapter of the Organisation for Women in Science for the developing world (OWSD), on March 8, in Columbo.

  • The 25th Birthday of the Electronic Journal of Combinatorics will be celebrated at the Canadam conference in May. Michael Giudici is attending the party!

Grant Success

  • Michael Giudici and Luke Morgan were awarded an ARC Discovery Project under the title: "Graph symmetry and simple groups".

  • Cheryl Praeger and Alice Niemeyer (former CMSC member now at RWTH Aachen) were awarded an ARC Discovery Project under the title: "Complexity of group algorithms and statistical fingerprints of groups". Stephen Glasby will be the research fellow on this grant.

  • Anurag Bishnoi was awarded an ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA)!

Annual Research Retreat

The annual CMSC research retreat took place in the week of 4-8 February this year. Once again, we stayed in the Moondyne Country Convention Centre in the marvellous Avon Valley and enjoyed the exceptional hospitality of our hosts Christine and Peter.

We had three external visitors this year: Mariagrazia Bianchi from the University of Milan, Brendan McKay from the Australian National University in Canberra (who also gave two excellent lectures on practical aspects of algorithms for graph isomorphism testing), and our former colleague Gabriel Verret, now working at the University of Auckland.

Altogether, this year's retreat had 16 participants, who worked on 11 problems, one of which was actually solved during the three days at Moondyne, and on others, some good progress was made that will spur further collaborative research between the CMSC members and our visitors. We look forward to sharing our insights in the form of publications, and to returning to this very productive research event next year as well.


  • Cheryl Praeger gave an invited lecture at the Nikolaus Conference at RWTH Aachen University, 7-9 December, 2018.

  • Michael Giudici, Luke Morgan and Emilio Pierro gave talks in a one day workshop at the University of Auckland.

  • Cheryl gave an invited lecture as part of the Trimester Program "Logic and Algorithms in Group Theory".

  • Cheryl gave a seminar in the Oberseminar Lie Theory at the Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany, 18 December 2018.

  • Cheryl was invited speaker at the “International Conference on Recent achievements in Mathematical Science”, University of Yazd, Iran, January 14-18.

  • Carlisle King, Michael Giudici and Stephen Glasby attended the AustMS meeting in Adelaide in December.

  • John Bamberg, Gordon Royle and Jesse Lansdown attended the 41 ACCMCC in Rotorua in December. John Bamberg was an invited speaker.

  • Michael Giudici, Cheryl Praeger, Alex Bors and Carmen Amarra gave talks at the Asia-Australia Algebra Conference in Sydney during January.

  • Michael Giudici will attend Canadam conference in Vancouver in May.

Groups and Combinatorics Seminars

Stephen Glasby maintains the website for our seminar series, please click here.


SymOmega is a mathematical blog run by John Bamberg, Michael Giudici and Gordon Royle.


For an up to date list of visitors to the CMSC, see here.

  • (Maria) Carmen Amarra (University of the Philippines, Diliman): 08/04/2018 - 08/04/2019

  • Mariagrazia Bianchi (University of Milan): 2/2-3/3

  • Gabriel Verret (University of Auckland): 4/2-17/2

  • Cai Heng Li (SUSTc): 15/1-10/2

  • Stephen Glasby will visit Natalia Maslova Ural Federal University, Yekaterinburg, Russia) in March.

  • Stephen Glasby will visit Eamonn O'Brien (University of Auckland) in August.


Published Papers

  • J. Bamberg, T. Harris, T. Penttila. On abstract ovals with Pascalian secant lines. J. Group Theory 21 (2018), no. 6, 1051 -- 1064. doi.

  • J. Bamberg, C. E. Praeger, B. Xia, The covering radii of the 2-transitive permutation unitary, Suzuki, and Ree groups. J. Group Theory 22 (2019), no. 1, 103 -- 117. doi.

  • Alexander Bors. Finite groups with a large automorphism orbit. J. Algebra 521 (2019), 331--364. doi.

  • Neil Gillespie, Padraig O Cathain, Cheryl E Praeger. Construction of the outer automorphism of S_6 via a complex Hadamard matrix. Math Comput. Sci. 12, (2018), 453-458. doi.

  • Nick Gill, Neil I. Gillespie, Cheryl E Praeger, Jason Semeraro. Conway groupoids, regular two-graphs, and supersimple designs. Seminaire Lotharingien de Combinatoire. 79 Article B79b. 2018. arxiv.

  • Michael Giudici, S. P. Glasby, Cai Heng Li, Gabriel Verret. Arc-transitive digraphs with quasiprimitive local actions. J. Pure Appl. Algebra 223(3) (2019), 1217--1226. doi

  • Stephen Glasby, Cheryl E Praeger. On the parameters of intertwining codes. Ars Math. Contemporanea. 16, (2019) 49-58. doi.

  • C. S. H King. On the finite simple images of free products of finite groups. Proceedings of the LMS, 118 (2019), 143-190. doi.

Accepted Papers

  • Barbara Baumeister, Dawid Kielak, Emilio Pierro. On the smallest non-abelian quotient of Aut(Fn), accepted in Proc. London Math. Soc.

  • Alexander Y. Chua, Michael Giudici, Luke Morgan. Coprime Subdegrees of Twisted Wreath Permutation Groups, accepted in Proc. Edinburgh Math. Soc.

  • S.P. Glasby, Frederico A. M. Ribeiro, Csaba Schneider. Duality between p-groups with three characteristic subgroups and semisimple anti-commutative algebras, accepted in Proc. R. Soc. Edinb.

  • Dawid Kielak, Emilio Pierro. On the smallest non-trivial quotients of mapping class groups, accepted in Groups, Geometry and Dynamics.

Submitted Papers

  • John Bamberg, Klaus Metsch. On intriguing sets of the Penttila-Williford association scheme, arxiv.

  • Alice Devillers, S.P. Glasby. Roots of unity and unreasonable differentiation, arxiv.

  • Michael Giudici, Gabriel Verret. Arc-transitive graphs of valency twice a prime admit a semiregular automorphism, arxiv.

  • S.P. Glasby, Cheryl E. Praeger, Colva M. Roney-Dougal. Involutions and regular semisimple elements in finite unitary groups of odd characteristic, arxiv.

  • S.P. Glasby. Classifying uniformly generated groups, arxiv.

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