Albeit belatedly, due to some last minute bureacratic hassles arising from the lack of experience of the staff at a young university like Reykjavík University, MohammadReza Mousavi has joined our little concurrency theory group at Reykjavík University. Anna and I are understandably thrilled at having him here. Mohammad will have a joint position between Reykavík University and TU Eindhoven.
The 'group' has doubled in size since August this year, with the arrival of Silvio Capobianco (a mathematician from Rome) and Mohammad. Their arrival has also strengthened ICE-TCS considerably, and their presence is giving Anna and me a good intellectual environment to work in. Now it's up to us to make the most of this opportunity, and I hope that we'll be able to capitalize on their scientific strength. If we don't, then it's going to be solely our fault.
The problems we encountered in getting a visa for Mohammad at the last minute seem to have some positive consequences. Together with the Icelandic research council, we are pressing the politicians here to establish a fast-track for researchers seeking visas and work permits to come and work in Iceland. Having a "researcher visa" procedure might make it more attractive for scientists to come and work here in the North Atlantic, at times when access to other countries is becoming more and more difficult. I'll keep you posted on the developments.