Three children resolving multiplications

International Day of Mathematics

14 March

Greater global awareness of mathematical sciences are vital to addressing challenges in areas such as artificial intelligence, climate change, energy and sustainable development, and to improving the quality of life in both the developed and the developing worlds. UNESCO’s 40th General Conference proclaimed 14 March of every year International Day of Mathematics in November 2019 (40C/ Resolution 30).

In many countries, 14 March (3/14) is already celebrated as Pi Day because π, one of the world’s most widely-known mathematical constants can be rounded to 3.14.

"And because mathematics are everywhere and are critical to making informed and effective decisions, this year on this Day we are publishing Mathematics in Action – a guide to explain to decision-makers how they can use this treasure trove of human intelligence, especially to inform the future."
UNESCO Director-General
Audrey Azoulay Director-General of UNESCO
Algebra and equations
"Modelling can indeed be particularly powerful – the fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has shown this – provided that it is used, that its pitfalls and potential are understood, and that entire fields of public action are not allowed to escape democratic discussion."
UNESCO Director-General
Audrey Azoulay Director-General of UNESCO

What UNESCO does to support mathematics

UNESCO is committed on a daily basis to facilitate access to mathematics education and research in developing countries through its educational programmes, but also through its regional centers dedicated to mathematics in Hanoi (Viet Nam) and Accra (Ghana), its chairs in Benin, Nigeria and Palestine, and the programmes of the International Centre for Pure and Applied Mathematics (Nice, France) in Asia, Africa and the Americas.

Girls and Science
"As humanity faces immense challenges, it is crucial that the power of mathematics be both better understood and more balanced."
UNESCO Director-General
Audrey Azoulay Director-General of UNESCO

Mathematics for Action: Supporting Science-Based Decision Making

UNESCO is releasing its Mathematics for Action toolkit on 14 March 2022 to mark International Mathematics Day.

Written by mathematicians and thought leaders from across the globe, it presents riveting research on the many ways in which mathematics is addressing the  world’s most pressing challenges.

Mathematics for Action also deciphers the role of mathematics in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals to 2030 that were adopted by the global community in 2015. For instance, the thirteenth Sustainable Development Goal concerns climate action. The latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change relies on a combination of climate models and storylines to produce scenarios of plausible alternative futures. It is these mathematical models which enable the exploration of multiple “what-if” scenarios to inform the decision-making process.

Mathematics for action: supporting science-based decision-making
children at school


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