Professor David Spiegelhalter will deliver Newnham College’s inaugural Gillian Vaisey Memorial Lecture this Friday at the Faculty of Law on West Road.

Professor Spiegelhalter, Winton Professor of the Public Understanding of Risk at Cambridge since 2007 and senior scientist at the MRC Biostatistics Unit, will consider "The Highs and Lows of Communicating Statistics with the Public". 

Statisticians, he will suggest, do a great and valuable service in designing and analysing studies, but they have a tendency to feel it is someone else’s job to take the final step in communicating the findings in a ready-digestible form. 

The lecture will consider whether this should be an integral part of a statistician’s role, and will show how disastrously things can go wrong when the numbers get into the wrong hands – and sometimes with hilarious consequences.

Professor Spiegelhalter (pictured) said, “The study of statistics is often perceived as being rather grey and dull but, as the threat of drowning in data increases, it may finally be becoming ‘cool’.”

Gillian Vaisey excelled at mathematics and was a Research Fellow at Newnham from 1954 to 1957. 

The lecture was endowed in her memory by Professor Anita Bailey – alumna and former Senior member of the College – with the subject matter to comprise ‘The Public Understanding of Mathematics and Science.’

The lecture, which is free of charge and does not require pre-booking, starts at 5.30pm on Friday 26th April in lecture theatre LG19, Faculty of Law, West Road, Cambridge.  All are welcome.

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