1991 …2021

Research activity per year

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Personal profile

Research interests

My current research activities are focused on a range of areas of applied statistics. One main topic of interest is the development of Bayesian methods for model fitting and testing in epidemiology. Current and recent collaborators on this topic include Chris Gilligan and co-workers in the mathematical biology group in Plant Sciences, Cambridge U, George Streftaris (MACS), Alex Cook (National University of Singapore, and ex-Heriot-Watt) and John Starr (NHS Lothian & Edinburgh University). A more recent, and more theoretical area of area of research for me concerns the application of Bayesian approaches such as data augmentation and Markov chain methods to extend the range of scenarios in which fiducial inference and functional modelling can be applied, and to develop new approaches to the construction of ignorance priors. My work on this topic is collaborative with Stan Zachary (MACS) and George Streftaris. I am also working with colleagues from the School of the Built Environment (SBE) on EPSRC-funded project (2009-12) to predict the impact of climate change on the performance of buildings. Work on this topic is collaborative with Sandhya Patidar (MACS), Phil Banfill, Dave Jenkins, Gill Menzies and Mehreen Gul (all SBE).


Following the completion of my BSc in Mathematics from Edinburgh in 1982 I worked briefly as a maths teacher in Spain before returning to Edinburgh to begin a PhD in pure mathematics. After completing this in 1986 I spent a year as a visiting faculty member in the mathematics department at the University of Virginia. In 1987 I joined Edinburgh University as a research associate in electrical engineering, before a spell working in industry with Plessey Research from 1990-91. In 1991, I returned to Edinburgh to take up a post as a research scientist with Biomathematics and Statistics Scotland (BioSS), becoming Deputy Director in 1996. I joined Heriot-Watt as Professor of Statistics in 2000.

Expertise related to UN SDGs

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 13 - Climate Action


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