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Boston Chapter of ASA: 2024 Mosteller Statistician of the Year Award Reception

  • 1.  Boston Chapter of ASA: 2024 Mosteller Statistician of the Year Award Reception

    Posted 04-09-2024 13:16

    Dear Colleagues,

    The Boston Chapter of the American Statistical Association is thrilled to announce that Dr. Susan A. Murphy, Mallinckrodt Professor of Statistics and of Computer Science and Associate Faculty at the Kempner Institute of Harvard University, is the esteemed recipient of the 2024 Mosteller Statistician of the Year Award.

    Honoree and Speaker: Dr. Susan A. Murphy, Mallinckrodt Professor of Statistics and of Computer Science and Associate Faculty at the Kempner Institute of Harvard University

    Date: April 12, 6:00 - 8:00 PM (ET)

    Location: The West Atrium of the Science and Engineering Complex, 150 Western Avenue, Allston, MA 02134

    * Light appetizers and refreshments will be served.


    Additional Zoom Meeting option is now added: as we approach the exciting evening of our upcoming reception this Friday, we understand that not everyone is able to join us in person to be part of this special occasion. We are pleased to announce an additional Zoom meeting option for those who cannot attend in person. This option will allow you to watch Dr. Murphy's presentation live, providing the chance to celebrate with our awardee from wherever you are.

    Please note that this Zoom option is limited to viewing the presentation session of the award reception, starting at 6:40 pm. It does not support participation in other part of the reception or interactive engagement during the event. If you're interested in this remote option, please email me at directly to ask for the Zoom meeting link by Thursday April 11th 8 pm ET. It requires no registration fee and no need to registration on Eventbrite. Please be sure the email subject line should read "Mosteller Award Reception Zoom - FIRSTNAME SURNAME".

    Presentation Title:

    Online Reinforcement Learning in Digital Health Interventions


    In this talk I discuss first solutions to some of the challenges we face in developing online RL algorithms for use in digital health interventions targeting patients struggling with health problems such as substance misuse, hypertension and bone marrow transplantation. Digital health raises a number of challenges to the statistical RL community including different sets of actions, each set intended to impact patients over a different time scale; the need to learn both within an implementation and between implementations of the RL algorithm; noisy environments and a lack of mechanistic models. In all of these settings the online line algorithm must be stable and autonomous. Despite these challenges, RL, with careful initialization, with careful management of bias/variance tradeoff and by close collaboration with health scientists can be successful. We can make an impact!

    Bio of the Speaker:

    Dr. Murphy's groundbreaking research focuses on improving sequential decision making in health, currently online, real-time learning algorithms for developing personalized digital health interventions. She is a member of the US National Academy of Sciences and of the US National Academy of Medicine. In 2013 she was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship for her work on experimental designs to inform sequential decision making. She has had a remarkable impact on the real-world practice of clinical trials in medical and behavior science through her research as well as efforts to promote adaptive intervention. She is a Fellow of the College on Problems in Drug Dependence.

    Dr. Murphy's services to the professional community are equally outstanding. Her leadership as the former President of both IMS and Bernoulli Society, the former Editor of Annals of Statistics, and the former Chair of the Interest Group on Health and Technology of the National Academy of Medicine highlight her long-time dedication to the field. She has served on a large number of committees of professional societies and on many NIH and NSF review panels. She has trained many students and postdocs, many of whom have achieved faculty positions in leading statistics departments and received student paper awards.

    About the Award: Every year the Boston Chapter presents the Mosteller Statistician of the Year award to a distinguished statistician who has made exceptional contributions to the field of statistics and has shown outstanding service to the statistical community, including the Boston Chapter. The award was originally established in 1990 as the Statistician of the Year Award. In 1997, this award was renamed the Mosteller Statistician of the Year award in honor of the 80th birthday of its first recipient, Fred Mosteller.

    For a historical perspective on the award and its past recipients, please visit Boston Chapter's Mosteller Statistician of the Year Award.

    Jianjun Hua
    Program Chair of Boston Chapter of ASA