MSRI exists to serve the mathematical community. After extensive consultation, we have decided that we can do that best this academic year through online programming combined with a limited and carefully controlled reopening of the institute beginning on April 5, 2021, when the building will be open to local program members currently living within 120 miles of Berkeley. This action follows the travel recommendations set forth by the State of California, discouraging visitors from other states or countries to travel to California, and encouraging Californians to remain within 120 miles of home while avoiding non-essential travel.
When travel becomes safer, MSRI will revise its position to include program members living more than 120 miles from Berkeley. At that time, any members who travel to the Bay Area will have to complete a 14-day quarantine, which includes obtaining a (negative) COVID test on days seven and fourteen of the quarantine period.
The safety of our members and staff is a critical concern. We have made many operational changes to comply with recommendations of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and state and local governments, as well as advice from a distinguished epidemiologist at University of California, Berkeley. For example, we have reconfigured our building and implemented protocols that staff and members must follow to gain access, including a quarantine period after travel and frequent COVID-19 testing. Wearing a face mask at the Institute, at all times, is also mandatory. Member and staff offices are each limited to one occupant. The number of members with building access is strictly limited, and only a few staff are present, the remainder working from home. We welcome your further suggestions, and we will be grateful for your cooperation.
We are inspired by the energy of the many members who have been and will be active participants this academic year, in spite of the obstacles! We have been taking full advantage of the new possibilities of participation at a distance, and we look forward to the day when, in addition, we can again share the excitement of the in-person collaborative research so characteristic of MSRI.
MSRI's National Math Festival, normally held in Washington, D.C., will be taking place as a virtual, all-ages event held April 16-18, 2021. All are welcome to participate from around the county and worldwide. Register for the free, all-ages 2021 Festival via Eventbrite.
MSRI welcomed many of our Fall 2020 virtual scientific program members via Zoom on August 17, 2020.