### Abstracts

**Vidyadhar Godambe**, University of Waterloo

*A Fundamental Paradox of Statistics*

A very common instance of statistical inference is studied. Its paradoxical
nature in all formal theories of statistical inference is established.

**Peter Guthrie**, University of Western Ontario

**Predicting how fast a chemical reaction will occur**

How fast a chemical reaction will occur depends not just upon the overall
thermodynamics, but also upon an intrinsic kinetic barrier, which depends
on the nature of the transformation. I have developed a new way of thinking
about reactions which allows relatively straightforward calculation
of the rate of any reaction. The key is that if only one thing happens
then energy depends in a very simple way on the progress of the transformation.
This allows calculations of the rate when (as in all real reactions)
more than one thing must happen for the chemical reaction to occur.
The approach also provides a qualitative way of thinking about which
of two reactions will be faster, without requiring rate information.

**Niky Kamran**, Department of Mathematics
and Statistics, McGill University.

**Wave equations in Kerr Geometry**

We will give a motivated introduction to the study of long-time behavior
of the solutions of the classical wave equations in the exterior geometry
of a rotating black hole in equilibrium. We will notably present some
results obtained with Felix Finster, Joel Smoller and Shing-Tung Yau
on the Dirac and scalar wave equations.

**Neal Madras**, Department of Mathematics
and Statistics, York University

* Self-Avoiding Walks and Related Models*

A self-avoiding walk is a path in a lattice that does not visit any
point more than once. The self-avoiding walk and several associated
models have attracted much interest in the past half-century for several
reasons: for chemists, they are simple discrete models of long-chain
polymer molecules; for physicists, they exhibit scaling behaviour and
phase transitions that make them interesting and accessible models for
investigating critical phenomena; and for mathematicians, they are the
source of many simply stated problems that seem to defy rigorous solution.
This talk will present an overview of the self-avoiding walk and related
models, and of some of the important questions associated with them.