50 years of Finite Geometry

A conference on the occasion of Jef Thas's 70th birthday

November 13-15, 2014 at Ghent, Belgium

An international conference celebrating the 70th birthday of Jef Thas will be held in Ghent (Belgium) from Thursday November 13, afternoon, to Saturday November 15, noon. The conference reviews 50 years of finite geometry, exactly the period of time that Jef Thas is active in that beautiful area. Organizers are James Hirschfeld, Koen Thas and Hendrik Van Maldeghem.

The preliminary schedule looks as follows:
Thursday November 13, 2014

1:30pm Coffee

2:00pm Koen Thas (UGent), Counting points and acquiring flesh
3:00pm Francis Buekenhout (UL Bruxelles), With J.A. Thas in the early seventies

3:50pm Coffee

4:20pm Aiden Bruen (Carleton U), Perspectivities, linear groups and blocking sets
5:10pm Stanley Payne (U Colorado Denver), Happy 70th, Jef!


Friday November 14, 2014

9:00am Coffee

9:30am Bruce Cooperstein (UC Santa Cruz), Grassmannian subspaces of polar Grassmannians: A survey of results and problems
10:30am Thomas Connor (UL Bruxelles), Almost simple groups with socle PSL(2,q) acting on abstract regular polytopes

11:00am coffee

11:30am Guglielmo Lunardon (U Napoli Federico II), From semifield flocks to the generalized translation dual of a semifield


2:00pm Anneleen De Schepper (UGent), Weyl distance preserving maps related to polar spaces
3:00pm Bart De Bruyn (UGent), Q-polynomial regular near 2d-gons

3:50pm Coffee

4:20pm Mark Pankov (U Warmia & Mazury), Metric characterizations of apartments in some building Grassmannians
5:00pm James Hirschfeld (U Sussex), The works of J. A. Thas

8:00pm CONFERENCE DINNER at Brasserie "Het Pakhuis" (Schuurkenstraat 4, 9000 Gent)

Saturday November 15, 2014

9:00am Coffee

9:30am Jeroen Schillewaert (Imperial College London), Small maximal independent sets
10:30am Antonio Pasini (U Siena), Equations for polar k-Grassmannians

11:00am Coffee

11:30am Hendrik Van Maldeghem (UGent), Infinite finite geometry and generalized generalized quadrangles

All lectures take place in Lecture Room A of Building S22 (Campus "De Sterre").


Please register for the conference by sending an email to Hendrik (hvm@cage.UGent.be). Mention whether you will participate to the special dinner (possibly with partner) on Friday November 14. This will cost 50 EUR per person.


There is no conference fee. Hotel prices in Ghent vary roughly from 55 EUR to 90 EUR for single rooms, and from 70 EUR to 100 EUR for a double room (per night). There are also a number of Bed & Breakfasts available. More details on these lodgings can be found here.
It would be our pleasure to arrange hotel reservations for you: simply mention the type of room you prefer (single or double), as well as the name of the person you will be sharing a room with in your registration email. You can check out our list of hotels.


There is some limited support for young people, so feel free to ask Hendrik (hvm@cage.UGent.be).

Travel information

Click here.


Everybody can submit a paper in honour of Jef's 70th birthday to the organizers. Accepted papers will appear in Innovations in Incidence Geometry. The deadline for submitting a paper is February 1st, 2015. Please use the electronic submission system of IIG (http://iig.ugent.be/submit/) and choose the special volume for these proceedings.

Looking forward to seeing you in Ghent soon,

The organizers,

List of Participants

Laura Bader
Daniele Bartoli
Anurag Bishnoi
Chris Blondia
Aiden Bruen
Francis Buekenhout
Frans Cantrijn
Philippe Cara
Ilaria Cardinali
Thomas Connor
Bruce Cooperstein
Simone Costa
Jan De Beule
Maarten De Boeck
Ingrid Debroey
Bart De Bruyn
Frank De Clerck
Eric Degreef
Richard Delanghe
Tom De Medts
Anneleen De Schepper
Marijke De Soete
Nico Durante
Eduardo Garcia Torano Andres
Luca Giuzzi
Koen Goethals
James Hirschfeld
Bert Hoogewijs
Sasha Ivanov
Manfred Karbe
Dirk Keppens
Guglielmo Lunardon
Giuseppi Marino
Francesco Mazzocca
Manuel Merida
Tom Mestdag
Wim Mielants
Vito Napolitano
Mark Pankov
James Parkinson
Antonio Pasini
Stanley Payne
Silvia Pianta
Irene Platoni
Alan Prince
Sara Rottey
Jeroen Schillewaert
John Sheekey
Johannes Siemons
Ana Silva
Leo Storme
Koen Struyve
Ludmila Tsiovkina
Andrea Svob
Jef Thas
Koen Thas
Rocco Trombetti
Jean Van Buggenhaut
Geertrui Van de Voorde
Joris Van der Jeugt
Hendrik Van Maldeghem
Magali Victoor

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Research Group Incidence GeometryHomepage of Hendrik Van Maldeghem