Plenary Talk: Navigating Collaboration
Chelsea Walton (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
Howard University, Washington, D.C.
I have listened to many talks- well over 500 talks if I had to guess. Most of the presentations have been on someone's accomplishments (the speaker’s or others’), but rarely do I see a discussion of *how* these theorems and articles and programs developed. How do mathematical ideas originate and evolve? For collaborative projects in particular, I also often think “How do people do 'groupwork' in mathematics?" In this talk, I aim to pull back the curtains and show that this process isn’t magic both by sharing some behind-the-scenes stories of my own work and by providing some concrete tips for working on (collaborative) research projects.
Of course, this topic would have an intersection with race and gender, since I'm black and female and don't quite fit in culturally. Even though some may view this as a disadvantage, I want to show how I don't see it as such -- how I've made my own lane, and set my own standards for what is successful, even within a collaborative endeavor.