The APM'2002 organizers gratefully acknowledge support from INTAS, Russian Foundation for Basic Research, Russian Government (program "Integration"), and St. Petersburg Scientific Centre RAS.
APM'2002 is the thirtieth in a series of annual summer schools held by Russian Academy of Sciences. The main purpose of the meeting is to gather specialists from different branches of mechanics to provide a platform for cross-fertilisation of ideas.
APM'2002 is devoted to the memory of Professor Yakov G. Panovko, an outstanding Russian scientist.
The first Summer School was organized by A.I. Lurie and Ya.G. Panovko in 1971. In the early years the main focus of the School was on nonlinear oscillations of mechanical systems with a finite number of degrees of freedom. The School specialized in this way because at that time in Russia (USSR) there were held regular National Meetings on Theoretical and Applied Mechanics, and also there were many conferences on mechanics with a more particular specialization. After 1985 many conferences and schools on mechanics in Russia were terminated due to financial problems. In 1994 the Institute for Problems in Mechanical Engineering of the Russian Academy of Sciences restarted the Summer School. The traditional name of "Summer School" has been kept, but the topics covered by the School have been much widened, and the School has been transformed into an international conference. The topics of the School cover now all fields of mechanics and associated into interdisciplinary problems.