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City academic says a maths degree is more than a route to the financial sector

Dr Olalla Castro-Alvaredo calls for a renewed appreciation of mathematics as a key scientific discipline.
by John Stevenson

Dr Olalla Castro-Alvaredo was recently invited by The Telegraph newspaper to write an article as part of it's Make Britain Count campaign.

Maths at CityAccording Dr Castro-Alvaredo, who is also the Programme Director in the Department of Mathematical Science, a major issue is the way mathematics is viewed in the UK as distinct from some countries on the Continent, including Spain: "There is [also] an issue around how the subject is viewed in the UK. Of those who do go on to study mathematics at degree level, many see it as a stepping stone to a career in the financial sector. Having lived in Spain, France and Germany, I feel that such a link is by no means so obvious in these countries. There are several reasons for this, but the biggest factor is the size and influence of the financial sector in the UK, particularly in London. As a result, a larger proportion of students take mathematics at degree level in the UK than in other countries, where it is rather seen as a vocational subject."

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City, University of London is an independent member institution of the University of London. Established by Royal Charter in 1836, the University of London consists of 18 independent member institutions with outstanding global reputations and several prestigious central academic bodies and activities.