History of the BSHM

History of the BSHM

The British Society for the History of Mathematics exists:

  • to promote and encourage research in the history of mathematics and the dissemination of the results of such research;
  • to promote and develop for the public benefit, awareness, knowledge, study and teaching of the history of mathematics;
  • to promote the use of the history of mathematics at all levels in mathematics education in order to enhance the teaching of mathematics for the public benefit.

It was founded in 1971, and has built an international reputation for promoting historical studies of mathematics. It is run by an elected Council, whose officers have included many distinguished scholars. Today the Society organises meetings, publishes a Journal, and provides a focus for the dissemination of information about research and other activities involving the history of mathematics in schools, colleges, universities and elsewhere. It also awards the BSHM Neumann Prize for a book dealing with the history of mathematics. The Society is a member of the Joint Mathematical Council of the United Kingdom.

This article, outlining the 40-year history of the British Society for the History of Mathematics, was written in 2013 for the European Mathematical Society's Newsletter by Professors Robin Wilson, former BSHM President, and Raymond Flood, a former BSHM President and Treasurer.


Past Presidents of the BSHM

1971–1973: Gerald Whitrow
1974–1976: Clive Kilmister
1977–1979: John Dubbey
1980–1982: Graham Flegg
1983–1985: Frank Smithies
1986–1988: Ivor Grattan-Guinness
1989–1991: Eric Aiton
1992–1994: John Fauvel
1995–1996: Steve Russ
1997–1999: J V Field
2000–2002: Peter Neumann
2003–2005: June Barrow-Green
2006–2008: Raymond Flood
2009–2011: Tony Mann
2012–2014: Robin Wilson
2015–2017: Philip Beeley
2018–2020: Mark McCartney
2021–2023: Sarah Hart