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The first 35 years (1946-1981)

The first 35 years of the Korean Mathematical Society (KMS) can be recalled as 'Age of Education'. It was when teachers or students put some emphasis on teaching and learning, just in time of the establishment of the universities. Back then, there were a few Korean mathematicians with bachelor's degree

Seoul National University Prof. Yoon-sik Choi
(1st President of the KMS)

In October 1946, a year after the liberation of Korea from Japanese occupation, the predecessor of the KMS, known as the Chosun Society of Mathematics and Physics, was established, along with the foundation of Seoul National University (SNU). This was led by the first president of the society, Yoon-sik Choi, a mathematics professor at SNU, and the founding members included the faculties and students of Colleges of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Engineering, and Education of SNU, of Yonhee University, and some high school teachers. There were about 24 mathematicians among them. Until 1949, the KMS held Spring and Fall meetings and seminars and promoted research and education at the same time. Although the research has not been done very vigorously, Rimhak Ree wrote a paper in 1947, and published in Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society (AMS) later in 1949. It was only after he went to Canada to study during the Korean War, that he learned it was published. The only record of Chosun Society of Mathematics and Physics is a copy of the registration on the 'Registration Booklet of Political Parties and Social Organizations' (September, 1950) of 'Seoul Provisional People's Committee' under the North Korean occupation.

Registration Booklet of Political Parties and Social
Organizations' (September, 1950)
A copy of the registration.
(Chosun Society of Math ematicsand Physics)

On March 11, 1952, during the Korean War, President Yoon-sik Choi reorganized the Society of Mathematics and Physics to Korean Mathematical Society and started to hold annual meetings and conferences in Spring and Fall.

Record of Annual Meetings (1952)

In July 1955, the KMS launched its journal, Mathematics Education, and published its three volumes. In 1958, meanwhile, Chung-ki Park began to publish Kyungpook Mathematics Journal which continues even today.

Mathematics Education Vol. 1 Mathematics Education Vol. 2 Mathematics Education Vol. 3

Following the end of the Korean War in 1953, the members of the KMS, who went to study abroad, received their degrees from late 1950s. Some of them returned home, but as the research environment of Mathematics in Korea was very poor, most of them went back to the United States. In 1960, after the April Student Revolution, President Yoon-sik Choi of the KMS passed away in August, and Vice President Ki-won Chang succeeded. Due to the disbandment of all Political Parties and Social Organizations just after the military coup in May, 1961, the KMS had its second inauguration on October 9, 1962 at Yonsei University. From 1964, the Society published its first and second volume of its journal under a new name, 'SooHak (Math)', edited by Wuhan Lee. The 3rd and 4th volumes were edited by Sehie Park.

SooHak (Math) Vol. 1 No. 1 (1964) SooHak (Math) Vol. 2 (1965) SooHak (Math) Vol. 3 (1966) SooHak (Math) Vol. 4 (1967)

After President Ki-won Chang suddenly passed away, Kyung-chan Park was elected as the third president in 1966. Two years later, the journal 'SooHak (Math)' was divided into Journal of the Korean Mathematical Society (JKMS) and Bulletin of the Korean Mathematical Society (BKMS) with the sponsorship from the Ministry of Science and Technology.

Journal of the Korean Mathematical Society (JKMS) Vol. 5 Contents of JKMS Vol. 5

For the 5th volume of Journal of the Korean Mathematical Society, to be published in time for the annual meeting held at Pusan National University in October 1968, Sehie Park and his students collected and edited manuscripts, working days and nights for two weeks at Minjung Publishing Company. The first new volume consisted of articles from several members, such as Chi-Hoon Choi, Sehie Park, Wuhan Lee, Hwa S. Hahn, Jehpill Kim, Jaihan Yoon, Ok-Kyung Yoon, etc. was published.

Ceremony for the 25th Anniversary of the Korean Mathematics Society
(1971.10.29-30, KIST)

The presidents of the KMS in the 1970s were Jungsuh Kim and Eulyong Park. In 1971, the KMS celebrated its 25th Anniversary, and in 1978, it was registered as a social corporation. This was when the KMS started to work on joining the International Mathematical Union (IMU). Since 1979, regional branches have also worked actively, and they began to publish their own journals independently during this period.

Register as a social corporation
(1978.10.7.-8,Sungkyunkwan Univ.)

Period of Major Expansion (1981-1996)

The second 35 years of the KMS can be regarded as 'Age of Research'. The field of mathematics in Korea continued to improve the quality of education, and the KMS revised its system and became a driving force of national research activities. From 1980 to 1996, the term of presidency was set to two years. Taikyun Kwon, Sehie Park, Tae Geun Cho, Jeong Dae Rim, Jaihan Yoon, Jongsik Kim, Moo Ha Woo, and Chin-Ku Joo were the presidents of the KMS in order. President Taikyun Kwon settled the systems for the shift in generations, self-governing system of regional branches, securing funds, and awards of the KMS. In 1981, KMS finally joined the IMU and secured its international position for Republic of Korea. It also celebrated its 35th Anniversary.

Ceremony for the 35th Anniversary of the
Korean Mathematical Society
(1981.10.9, Yeungnam Univ.)

In 1983, during the term of President Sehie Park, KMS Symposium on the Mathematical Education was first held to analyze and revise the curriculum of school mathematics. The 33rd symposium was held in 2016. Also, Symposium Proceeding of the Mathematical Education, Abstracts of Articles, and KMS Newsletters began to publish regularly, subjectwise committees were formed, Spring meetings were revived after more than 20 years, and JKMS and BKMS were reformed in their formats.

1st KMS Symposium on the Mathem atical Education
(1983 , Seoul National Univ.)
The Newsletter of the Korean Mathematical Society Vol.1 (1983)

JKMS Vol.21 (1984)     BKMS Vol.21 (1984)

After the later half of the 1970s, majorities of those who studied abroad returned and took parts in graduate level education. The number of Ph.D.'s received in Korea has grown since the 1980s, and the Korean mathematicians have begun to receive higher citations. Finally, Korea has achieved an internationally recognized level in terms of research quality, in some fields of mathematics.    In 1986, during the term of President Tae Geun Cho, the Society issued its first volume of Communications of the Korean Mathematical Society (CKMS), and purchased an office in Seong-Ji Building in Mapo-Gu, moving the office of the Society from SNU to the new one.

Seong -Ji Building in Mapo-Gu Communications of the Korean Mathematics Soceity
V o l. 1 (1986 )

During the term of President Jung Dae Rim, the first Korean Mathematical Olympiad (KMO) was held in November, 1987, and the KMO representatives obtained relatively good scores in their first participation in the IMO in Australia. They made it to the top 10 rankings in the late 1990s, and won the first place in 2012 for the first time. When Jaihan Yoon was the president from 1988 to 1990, the honorary member Seong-Dae Hong sponsored to digitalize and modernize the administration system of the KMS.
When Jongsik Kim and Moo Ha Woo became presidents of the Society in the early 1990s, the KMS laid the groundwork for globalization through academic exchanges with Japan and China. At the time when Korea joined the IMU in 1981, Korea was in Group I. After strenuous efforts by the KMS, it was raised to Group II in 1993.
   New Research Centers, TGRC of Kyungpook National University and GARC of SNU were established in the early 1990s, and Korea Institute for Advanced Study (KIAS) was established in 1996. Government support for basic science research centers also started. These research institutes played a very important and major role in accelerating the development of mathematical research in Korea. When Chin-ku Chu was the president in 1995-1996, International Mathematics Conference commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the KMS was held, with Rimhak Ree giving a special lecture for this occasion.

Ceremony for the 50th Anniversary of the Korean Mathematics Society
(1996.10.27-28, Seoul National Univ.)

Toward Globalization (1997-2010)

During the presidency of Kun Soo Chang from 1997 to 1998, the KMS worked hard to establish Mathematical Union of Asia(MUA). The KMS expanded the research awards and contributed to the improvement of the quality of journals.
   Under President Sung Ki Kim from 1999 to 2000, the IMU designated the year 2000 as the World Mathematical Year and the KMS followed suit by hosting the 41st International Mathmatical Olympiad (IMO) in Daejeon successfully with the slogun Beginning the new millennium with mathematics.

The 41st International Mathmatical Olympiad

International conference for
Mathematics in the New
(2000.10.20-22, Yonsei Univ.)
Logo of Mathematics in the
New Millenium

The year 2001, the beginning of the new millennium, marked the presidencies of Dong Myung Chung, Yong Seung Cho, Kyung Chan Min, and Dohan Kim.
   In January 2003, JKMS was listed in the SCIE, bringing much happiness to all members and elevating the reputation of the KMS. In November 2005, every Korean mathematician's dream came true as National Institute of Mathematical Science (NIMS) was founded.
   In 2006, 13 Research centers were selected by the second Brain Korea 21 (BK21) project, increasing the foundation for mathematical research. Moreover, greeting its 60th Anniversary, the KMS expanded its global capacity by holding the academic convention Global KMS Day and Asia Mathematics Forum.
   The year 2006 and 2007 were significant for the KMS. In 2006, along with the 60th anniversary, Jeong Han Kim, Yong-Geun Oh, and Jun-Muk Hwang became the first Korean mathematicians to give invited lectures at Madrid ICM 2006. Also, Rimhak Ree became the first member entered to National Hall of Fame for Science and Technology.
   In 2007, the BKMS was also added in the SCIE list, and Korea ranked the 12th in the world in quantity in Mathematics SCIE publications. Most importantly, IMU raised Korea's group level from Group II to Group IV at once, making Korea the first country whose IMU group level has been raised by two steps. With confidence based on series of such accomplishments, the KMS decided to host ICM 2014 as its prime objective. Two years later, in 2009, Seoul was selected to be the venue for ICM 2014, and the main goal of the KMS during the next seven years was to host the ICM successfully. Moreover, there was another congratulatory event in December as the 12th International Congress on Mathematical Education (ICME-12) was decided to be held in Seoul as well.
   As for the Fall Meeting, the joint meeting of the Korean Mathematical Society and Canadian Mathematical Society was held in Jeju International Convention Center in 2008, the joint meeting with the American Mathematical Society (AMS) at Ewha ECC in 2009, and with the Chinese Mathematical Society in Chongqing, China in May 2010. Especially, the KMS was successful in hosting the Joint Meeting of KMS and AMS where more than 1,000 people participated and gave talks, so it gained confidence that the ICM in 2014 can be hosted successfully.

 2009 Joint Meeting of KMS and AMS
(2009.12.16-20, Ewha Womans Univ.)

The 2010 Spring Meeting was sponsored by the Korean Federation of Mathematics Related Societies and hosted the Korean Congress of Mathematicians for the ICM 2014 with success.

Success of Seoul ICM 2014 and
Getting Ready for the 100 Years of KMS (2011-2016)

Since 2011, the KMS and the ICM Organizing Committees spent all their efforts in hosting the Seoul ICM 2014. During this period, Dong Youp Suh and Myung-Hwan Kim were the presidents of the KMS, and the chair of the ICM Organizing Committee was Hyungju Park.
   The ICME-12 was held at COEX in 2012, with 3,600 participants from 83 countries, presenting over 1,500 papers. Besides, Korea also won the first place in International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) at Argentina.
   In 2013, prior to the ICM 2014, the ICM and the Future Planning Strategy Forum was held at the National Assembly of Korea. Also the Asian Mathematics Conference 2013 (AMC 2013) was held in BEXCO in Busan. During the AMC 2013, the Busan Resolution for the KMS-SEAMS joint promotion of the Asian Mathematics Union was passed unanimously.
   The year 2014 was finally set as the Year of Korean Mathematics, and Seoul ICM 2014 stood in the center of it. Together with the ICM 2014 Organizing Committee, the members of the KMS have made the ICM 2014 the most successful ICM, showing the people the joy, beauty, and greatness of mathematics. They shined the future of mathematics in Korea, and mathematics became one of the most wanted major fields among university students.

Seoul ICM2014 (2014 .8.13-21,COEX ,Seoul)

The publication of the 70-year history of the Korean Mathematical Society, proposed in 2015 by Yong-Hoon Lee, the then President of KMS, was completed after two years of hard work by the Editorial Committee chaired by Sehie Park, the 7th President of KMS. The publication commemorates the 70th anniversary of the Society as well as records the real stories of its first generation.

2nd Editorial Committee of the KMS 70 year history (2016.01.13) Cover of KMS 70 year history

International Conference for KMS 70th Anniversary (2016.10.20.-23,Seoul National Univ.)

In the fall of 2016, KMS successfully organized the International Conference of KMS to celebrate its 70th anniversary. During the commemoration ceremony, congratulatory speeches were delivered by Sehie Park, the Chairman of the Editorial Committee on the 70-year history of KMS, and by Shigefumi Mori, the President of the International Mathematical Union (IMU). Also, President-elect Hyang-Sook Lee addressed a vision for KMS under the title, "Mathematics that lead the world by harmonizing traditions and innovations," which was proclaimed together with President Yong-Hoon Lee. The recorded history is anticipated to serve as a cornerstone for the Korean Mathematical Society in preparation of its centenary.

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