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Chemerda Lectures in Science: "The Greatest Debate in the History of Science"

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Larry A. Wasserman, UPMC Professor of Statistics and Data Science at Carnegie Mellon University, will present the 2018 John M. Chemerda Lectures in Science on March 14 and 15 on the Penn State University Park campus. The free public lectures are sponsored by the Penn State Eberly College of Science. Wasserman will give a public lecture intended for a general audience titled, “The Greatest Debate in the History of Science,” at 4:00 pm on Wednesday, March 14, in 102 Thomas Building.
14 March 2018 from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM
102 Thomas Building
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In this talk, Wasserman will discuss the ongoing debate around how to define uncertainty and the practical consequences of using different approaches to uncertainty in statistical methods, for example when analyzing data from drug trials.

"The field of statistics is concerned with quantifying uncertainty," said Wasserman. "But since its beginning, the field has been haunted by a debate about how to define uncertainty. The two dominant schools of thought are the Bayesian approach --- which regards probability as degree of belief --- and the frequentist approach, which regards probability as long-run frequencies. This debate has infected other sciences such as astronomy, biology and machine learning. Unlike many other philosophical debates in science, this debate has serious practical consequences. The medications you take were approved using statistical techniques and the choice of these techniques hinges on these philosophical questions."

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