Eco-Stats Symposium: New Opportunities at the Interface between Ecology and Statistics


Thursday, 11 July 2013 - 9:00am to Friday, 12 July 2013 - 5:00pm


Kensington campus, UNSW

Ecologists and statisticians have much to gain from working together, and this two-day symposium was designed to provide precisely such an opportunity. World leaders from ecology and statistics were paired up to present their own perspectives on topical issues (including modern methods for modelling species distributions; finding patterns in multi-species data; applications of maximum entropy estimation), and round-table discussions workshopped opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration on these topics.

The symposium attracted 142 attendees from nine countries, and feedback on the event was very positive. It was a productive meeting: a Special Issue for a high impact cross-disciplinary journal concerning symposium outcomes is currently in the works.

This symposium was designed as a collaborative forum for researchers with interests in ecology, statistics, or both. This is reflected in the diverse list of invited speakers:

  • Trevor Hastie, Stanford Univesity, USA
  • Bill Shipley, University of Sherbrooke, Canada
  • Noel Cressie, University of Wollongong
  • Chris Daly, Oregon State University, USA
  • Anne Chao, National Tsing Hua University, Taiwan
  • Adrian Baddeley, CSIRO-CMIS
  • Jane Elith, University of Melbourne
  • Gerry Quinn, Deakin University
  • Will Cornwell, Vrije Universiteit, the Netherlands

Sessions were organised around five special topics, with a pair of speakers on each topic:

  • Applications of maximum entropy estimation in ecology (Shipley, Hastie)
  • Mapping bioclimatic variables (Daly, Cressie)
  • Measuring diversity (Cornwell, Chao)
  • Presence-only data and point pattern analysis (Elith, Baddeley)
  • Multivariate analysis (Quinn)

*Symposium flyer

This symposium was a Mathematics of Planet Earth event, hosted at the University of New South Wales by Eco-Stats Research at the UNSW School of Mathematics and Statistics and the Evolution & Ecology Research Centre.

See the Eco-Stats Symposium website for further details.