Congrats to Andrew Leigh – preselected ALP candidate for Fraser

April 26, 2010

Congratulations to economist and blogger Andrew Leigh for winning the preselection for the ALP candidate for the ACT seat Fraser in the upcoming federal election (ABC analysis here, and Canberra Times reports here and here, and also via Club Troppo). Provided the ALP National Executive doesn’t overturn the result, Andrew is practically guaranteed to be the next federal MP for Fraser, succeeding Bob McMullan.

Andrew is a bright and talented guy who has been prolific as an economist at ANU, working on a very wide range of topics – and publicising them via his blog. His addition to Federal Parliament will be a positive for federal politics.

The preselection was a crowded field – I only knew two of the candidates – Andrew and George Williams, a UNSW constitutional lawyer seeking a federal seat. As Andrew was not aligned to any faction, I thought he probably wouldn’t win, and fortunately this was wrong.

As Andrew Norton writes, it’s hard to know whether the gains from Andrew being in politics will outweigh the loss from the research he would otherwise undertake. But I suspect that Andrew will attempt to find ways to contribute through politics at least equivalent to his contribution to date through research. Good luck to him – I expect parliamentary committees and/or a parliamentary secretaryship awaits Andrew in the near future.


Paper published in J. Knot Theory and its Ramifications – on two uncoloured quantum link invariants

April 10, 2010

I’ve just had a paper published in J. Knot Theory and its Ramifications: ON THE Uq(osp(1|2n)) AND U-q(so(2n + 1)) UNCOLORED QUANTUM LINK INVARIANTS.

I wrote the paper for fun. It says (in part) that the two quantum link invariants mentioned in the title, where only the vector (smallest non-trivial) representation is used to colour all components of the link, are either identical or related by an abstract symmetry.

I proved the identical situation for one simple class of links – but suspect the invariants are identical for all links.

I’ll upload a copy of the paper as similar to the published version as possible when I have some time.