Keynote Speakers

Prof Kerrie Mengersen

Professor of Statistics, Science and Engineering Faculty, Queensland University of Technology

Distinguished Professor Kerrie Mengersen is an Australian Research Council (ARC) Laureate Fellow in the School of Mathematical Sciences at QUT and is Deputy Director of the ARC Centre for Mathematical and Statistical Frontiers: Big Data, Big Models and New Insights (ACEMS). Her focus is on using and developing new statistical and computational methods that can help to solve complex problems in the real world. These problems are in the fields of environment, health and medicine and industry. 

At QUT, her Bayesian Research and Applications Group (BRAG) comprises around 30 awesome postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers.  

Some of the recent projects they have worked on are:

Conservation-focused: The health of coral reefs; biosecurity and rare species.

Other projects include: Human diseases, Cancer mapping, Virtual Reef Diver, Airport monitoring and the Queens Wharf project in Brisbane. 

In 2016, Kerrie Mengersen was awarded the Pitman Medal, the highest honour to be presented by the Statistical Society of Australia and the first woman to receive it.

In 2018, she was elected a Fellow to the Australian Academy of Science (AAS) and also the Academy of Social Sciences Australia (ASSA)

Ian Anderson

Ian Anderson AO

Professor Anderson was previously the Foundation Chair, Indigenous Higher Education; Pro Vice-Chancellor (Engagement) at the University of Melbourne. He was previously the Foundation Chair of Indigenous Health at the University of Melbourne and has held a number of academic, policy and practice roles in Indigenous health over a thirty-year period.

In this work he has been an Aboriginal health worker, general practitioner, Chief Executive Officer for the Victorian Aboriginal Health Service and Medical Adviser for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health for the Commonwealth Department of Aboriginal Health.

Other roles include the Director of Research for the Lowitja Institute and related Cooperative Research Centre for Aboriginal Health; Chair of the National Indigenous Health Equality Council, Council Member for the National Health and Medical Research Council and a Co-Chair of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Higher Education Council.

Professor Anderson was awarded the Order of Australia medal in 2017 for distinguished service to the Indigenous community, particularly in the areas of health equality, aged care and education, as an academic, researcher and medical practitioner, to policy reform, and as a role model.

His family are Palawa Trowerna from the Pyemairrenner mob in Tasmania which includes Trawlwoolway and Plairmairrenner and related clans.

Vivek Chinchalker

Image result for Vivek ChinchalkerVivek is an analytics professional, with 9+ years of experience in applying various risk management frameworks and control frameworks within Healthcare and Banking industry.

He has successfully undertaken a broad range of analytical roles including Healthcare modelling, Health Cost leadership, highly complex Financial Crime Services, Technology Services, Portfolio Management and Collections.

Vivek is currently focusing on identifying key drivers within Healthcare industry,that can deliver better health outcomes to our 3.9 million Medibank members, as well as to all Australians, through the provision of health services and our work in the community.

In the past, Vivek has supported high value business transformation projects ($19m+) to enhance the financial crime detection quality and also delivered strategic change initiatives within Banking industry. Along with his passion to solve intractable problems through advanced analytics, he has led teams of specialists in data analytics and operations. 

Iain Johnstone

photo of Iain JohnstoneDr. Johnstone is a biostatistician with research interests in statistical decision theory and wavelet-like methods (and their uses) in estimation theory, asymptotics, and application areas such as inverse problems and signal processing. Other interests include simulation methodology, volume tests of significance, hazard rate estimation and maximum entropy methods.

Frauke Kreuter Ph.D.

Frauke Kreuter, Ph.D.Professor Frauke Kreuter is Director of the Joint Program in Survey Methodology at the University of Maryland, USA; Professor of Statistics and Methodology at the University of Mannheim; and head of the Statistical Methods Research Department at the Institute for Employment Research (IAB) in Nürnberg, Germany. She received her Master in Sociology from the University of Mannheim, Germany, and her PhD in Survey Methodology from the University of Konstanz. Before joining the University of Maryland she held a postdoc at the UCLA Statistics Department. Her research focuses on sampling and measurement errors in complex surveys. In her work at JPSM she maintains strong ties to the Federal Statistical System, and served in advisor roles for the National Center for Educational Statistics and the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Renate Meyer

Image result for renate meyerI am an applied Bayesian statistician. After obtaining an MSc in Mathematics ( for which I was awarded the Springorum Denkmuenze) from the RWTH Aachen, Germany, I worked as a research scientist in the Department of Medical Statistics from 1988-1993 and did a PhD in Mathematical Statistics also at the RWTH Aachen. I then took up a lectureship in Statistics at the University of Auckland in 1994.

I am working on applied Bayesian inference and MCMC methods with interdisciplinary research collaborations and applications in astrophysics, econometrics, fisheries, marine ecology, medicine and engineering.

Contributions to the development of MCMC methodology have been published in Statistics and Computing, Computational Statistics and Data Analysis, and Computational Statistics.

My ongoing collaboration with astrophysicists Nelson Christensen, Carleton College, started in 1998 when we pioneered the MCMC approach to gravitational wave and cosmic microwave background radiation data analysis. This started a Marsden and NSF funded research program which led to world-wide collaborations and ground-breaking contributions to the development of MCMC-based data analysis strategies for LIGO with a series of publications in top-ranking Physics journals PRD and PRE. Some of these papers build the foundations of the MCMC techniques used to estimate the parameters of the two binary black hole mergers detected on September 14, 2015 by the Advanced LIGO interferometers and are cited in the parameter estimation paper that accompanied the famous detection paper by the LSC, published in Physical Review Letters on Feb. 11, 2016.

I am chair of the NZ Astrostatistics and General Relativity Group, which comprises statisticians and astrophysicists from the University of Auckland, Victoria, Canterbury and Otago. In 2019, we joined  the LISA (Laser Interferometric Space Antennna) Consortium that leads the European Space Agency mission of observing gravitational waves from space, see also the NZ Herald article.

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