SMS scnews item created by Emma Carberry at Thu 12 Aug 2010 1025
Type: Seminar
Modified: Thu 19 Aug 2010 1005; Thu 19 Aug 2010 1816
Distribution: World
Expiry: 20 Aug 2010
Calendar1: 20 Aug 2010 1430-1530
CalLoc1: Carslaw 175
Auth: (carberry) in SMS-WASM

Joint Colloquium: Franklin -- Data-free statistics

We will take the Speaker to lunch at Thai@Home  before his talk with folks from the
Algebra seminar, leaving at 1:00PM from the 2nd floor of Carslaw.  NOTE CHANGE OF LUNCH

Please note that for the remainder of semester colloquia at the University of Sydney
will be held at 2:30 PM for compatibility with the algebra seminar, and on weeks where
the algebra seminar is running we will have a joint lunch.  

Abstract: Extreme risks must be evaluated in such contexts as quarantine, terrorism and
banking.  Unfortunately, an extreme risk is one that hasn’t happened yet, so directly
relevant data is non-existent.  The talk surveys what is done in the Basel II compliance
regime in banking and in Australian quarantine risk analysis, where there are formal
processes for using small data sets to keep expert opinion honest.  The usefulness of
Extreme Value Theory is considered.  Extreme risks raise in acute form the "reference
class problem", of how to decide what is the right class in which to take statistics to
bear on an individual case.  The views of philosophers and legal theorists on the
reference class problem are canvassed.

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