|"The most important single thing about this conference was that it brought together for the first time representatives of all major groups of users of hypergroups. [They] talked to each other about how they were using hypergroups in fields as diverse as special functions, probability theory, representation theory, measure algebras, Hopf algebras, and Hecke algebras. This led to fireworks."---from the Introduction
Hypergroups occur in a wide variety of contexts, and mathematicians the world over have been discovering this same mathematical structure hidden in very different applications. The diverse viewpoints on the subject have led to the need for a common perspective, if not a common theory. Presenting the proceedings of a Joint Summer Research Conference held in Seattle in the summer of 1993, this book will serve as a valuable starting point and reference tool for the wide range of users of hypergroups and make it easier for an even larger audience to use these structures in their work.