In this fascinating history of the mathematics department at the University of California, Berkeley, Moore describes how this institution evolved from a single facutly member at a financially-troubled private college into a major research center that is ranked among the very best in the USA and in the world. Moore's account spans from its origins in the 1850s to the establishment and early years of the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute (MSRI) in the early to mid 1980s.
" (Mathematics Emeritus, U. of California, Berkeley), that department's former head and a member of its faculty starting in 1961, knows all the details and writes elegantly of how a disparate group of people vetted a struggling department in a struggling university to become one of the premier mathematics institutions in the world. Moore does not flinch, a skill that must have been useful in his tenure, and he is a skilled commentator on turbulence."" -Sci-Tech Book NEws, June 2007
An article appearing the the UCB Mathematics Department Newsletter adapted by the author from the Introduction of Mathematics at Berkeley: A History.
""All royalties from this book will be donated directly to the UC Berkeley Foundation and will be dedicated to graduate sudent fellowship support in the Mathematics Department."" -Berkeley Newsletter, February 2006
Important matters were repeatedly confronted at various stages in the growth of Berkeley: the ideal size of the Department at any stage, raising or maintaining quality in research and in teaching, rapid growth, stagnation and even decline, hirings, and, of course, money... [all] well described here, along with informative short biographies of many of the people involved, and many photographs.
Three groups of readers will enjoy this book: mathematicians, especially those with any connection to Berkeley, historians of mathematics, and Professors eager to promote their departments. There is much to learn. -Jeremy Gray, Math Reviews, August 2007
Includes interesting anecdotes (e.g., the California oath controversy), political infights (e.g., computing/computer science versus mathematics), and insight as to what it means to be considered a ""world-class research institution""... Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty. -CHOICE Magazine , September 2007
To tell this story a more well-placed person than Calvin Moore could scarcely be found...The emphasis is on the development of the department as an institution within the university. -CMS, September 2007
The most important mathematicians and their scientific works are carefully presented...The author also includes some interesting and helpful discussions... Recommended to anybody who is interested in the development of mathematical societies and teaching and research in the 19th and 20th centuries in the USA. -EMS, September 2007
""An interesting explanation is given about how the state of mathematics in the United States influenced the development of the mathematics curriculum at Berkeley and the hiring of faculty."" -Scott H. Brown, Auburn University, Mathematics Teacher, December 2007
""Mathematics at Berkeley: A History provides a detailed view of the hidden past of a major academic powerhouse, revealing the kinds of resources, leadership, and good luck it took to create this top-ranked research institution."" -BERKELEY Science Review, October 2007
This is a fascinating story of one of the most important mathematical centres of the world, the first book-length such story of this centre. -Roman Murawski, Zentralblatt MATH, August 2007
""Cal Moore has given us a work of admirable scholarship that belongs in the library of any mathematics historian and should be interesting to a range of other mathematicians .... If you have connections to Berkeley or are merely interested in how a great math department came into being, then this thorough and well written book is at least worth a browse, and you may find the entire book as enjoyable as I did."" -Notices of the AMS, November 2008
""As I read, I became more and more drawn to the story as it relates to policy and hiring issues that have concerned me at one time or another as a department administrator and citizen. Initial curiosity eventually turned into enthusiasm and a recognition that this case study is relevant to a wide spectrum of mathematicians."" -T. W. Gamelin, The Mathematical Intelligencer , August 2008"