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New horizons in Computational Geometry and Topology

The Inria Sophia Antipolis - Mediterranean Centre is organizing September 5 & 6, 2019, a conference in honour of Jean-Daniel Boissonnat, a pioneer in the field of algorithmic geometry, who has greatly contributed to the development and emergence of a French community that is now very active in this field.

  • Date : 5/09/2019 to 6/09/2019
  • Place : Inria centre de Sophia Antipolis - Méditerranée
  • Organiser(s) : Inria

Image of a heart, industrial model modeling, virtual visit, cinema, or video games: 3D images are now part of our daily lives and their uses will be exponential in the coming years, in all fields (science, robotics, medicine, industry, culture, etc.). But how does a computer calculate and represent these digital objects? How to demonstrate the efficiency and reliability of these calculations (when it comes to aeronautics or medicine, for example)? Under what conditions can a finite sample of points taken from a shape be used to construct a representation of it, to estimate its properties?
Finding mathematical and algorithmic answers to these questions is the whole purpose of algorithmic geometry. Jean-Daniel Boissonnat, one of the pioneers in this field, has made a significant contribution to its development and to the emergence of a very active French community today.

This two day event will bring together about twenty invited talks given by leading researchers working in the field of computational geometry and topology.

The first day will provide an overview of algorithmic geometry and topology, discussing its foundations, evolution and new research directions. On the second day, his guests will discuss the geometric problems arising in some major scientific fields, then former PhD students and collaborators will discuss their work or collaboration with Jean-Daniel.

It is a wonderful occasion to celebrate his brilliant career at Inria, who has inspired the development of this fields for almost 40 years…

Jean-Daniel Boissonnat


Jean-Daniel Boissonnat is graduated from the Ecole Supérieure d'Electricité (1976). He obtained his Ph.D. from the university of Rennes in Information Theory (1979) and habilitation from the university of Nice in Computer Science (1992). He is a research director at Inria, the French research institute for the numerical sciences. He is also a member of the DataShape team which is located in Saclay (south of Paris) and Sophia Antipolis (south of France).

Jean-Daniel Boissonnat research interests are in Computational Geometry and Topology. This includes geometric data structures, Voronoi diagrams, triangulations, randomized algorithms, robust computing, motion planning, mesh generation, non-linear manifold learning, high dimensional geometry, topological data analysis. He have published several books and more than 180 research papers. His recent book "Geometric and Topological inference", coauthored by Frédéric Chazal and Mariette Yvinec, can serve as a textbook for graduate students or researchers in mathematics, computer science and engineering interested in a geometric approach to data science.

Computational geometry emerged as a new research field in the eighties. He played a pionneering role in shaping the field and led two project teams at Inria, Prisme (Geometry and Robotics, 1987-2003), which has been the birth place of computational geometry in France, and Geometrica (Geometric Computing, 2003-2015). In 2014, he has been awarded a 5 years advanced grant from the European Research Council to develop the GUDHI project (Geometry Understanding in Higher Dimensions).

20 years ago, Jean-Daniel Boissonnat initiated the development of the Computational Geometry Algorithms Library (CGAL) in collaboration with partners in Europe. CGAL has significantly contributed to the influence and impact of computational geometry among the sciences. CGAL is nowadays used worldwide for teaching, research and is at the heart of industrial applications.

His work on geometric modelling, shape reconstruction and mesh generation led to industrial successes with Siemens and Dassault Systèmes, and to patents in the field of medical imaging and surgery (Siemens, Intuitive Surgical) and in geologic modeling (IFP).

He is an associated editor of two leading scientific journals, Journal of the ACM (JACM) and Discrete and Computational Geometry (DCG). He was before on the editorial board of Algorithmica, Journal of Computational Geometry (JCG) and Computational Geometry, Theory and Applications (CGTA). He has been a member of the scientific council of the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Lyon (France), chaired the evaluation committee of Inria, and has been a member of the council of the HCERES (High Council for the Evaluation of Research and Higher Education).

Jean-Daniel Boissonnat received the IBM award in Computer Science (1987), the EADS award in Information Sciences (2006) and has, together with his collaborators, been awarded the grand prix ANR du numérique in 2013. He is also Chevalier de l'Ordre National du Mérite (a French order of merite).

Keywords: Computational geometry Research Mathematic Algorithmic geometry Topology