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Research Groups

Biomedical Statistics

This interdisciplinary research group brings together researchers involved in the analysis of data from medical and biomedical data. The focus is on advanced methodology applicable to the field including bioinformatics, infectious disease modelling, longitudinal and time-to-event modelling, growth curve modelling, causal modelling, methods for incidence estimation and multivariate analysis.  The group meets on a monthly basis.

Current members: Assoc Prof Francesca LittleDr Freedom Gumedze, Dr Reshma Kassanjee, Dr Miguel Lacerda, Dr Sheetal Silal, Dr Michael Schoemaker and Dr Maya Lesosky.


Data Science 

Data science is an exciting new field that uses computer-intensive statistical methods to identify patterns and make predictions using large volumes of data. The applications of data science are diverse, from predicting fraudulent transactions before they occur to extracting marketing insights from unstructured social media data. This research group is interested in the statistical and machine learning techniques that are used in data science applications.

Current members include  Dr Miguel Lacerda, Dr Sebnem Er, Assoc Prof Francesca LittleAssoc Prof Sugnet Lubbe, Dr Juwa Nyirenda and Dr Melvin Varughese.


Innovations in Financial Modelling and Applications

This interdisciplinary research group, which involves professionals from various fields and departments, is aimed at promoting scholarly output and collaborations in financial modelling and applications. Research topics may encompass, but are not restricted to quantitative analysis, portfolio management and optimisation, financial risk modelling and asset pricing.

Current members: Prof David Bradfield, Prof Graham Barr, Assoc Prof Kanshukan Rajaratnam, Dr Melvin Varughese, Mr Allan Clark, Mr Chun-Kai Huang, Mr Chun-Sung Huang and Mr Stefan Britz.


Multivariate data analysis and visualisation

This international research group focus on biplots and related graphical displays of multivariate data such as Analysis of Distance and Canonical Variates, Partial Least Squares Biplots, Nonlinear Biplots, Three-way data, Multidimensional Scaling and Multiple Correspondence Analysis. Meetings are usually informal, based on collaborative projects, often via Skype or during conferences attended by more than one member of the group.

Collaborators: A/Prof Sugnet Lubbe, Prof Niël le Roux (Stellenbosch University), Prof John Gower (The Open University, UK), Dr Karen Vines (The Open University, UK), Prof Patrick Groenen (Erasmus University, The Netherlands), Prof Jörg Blasius (University of Bonn, Germany), Prof Michael Greenacre (Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain) and post graduate students.


Operational Research

This departmental research group focuses on the development of appropriate decision modelling and support tools, including both “hard” (e.g. optimization and simulation) and “soft” (e.g. problem structuring and systems modelling) approaches, relevant to critical national decision and policy making (e.g. in health, water, energy, agriculture, public sector monitoring and evaluation). 

Current members: Prof Dave Bradfield, Dr Ian Durbach, Dr Juwa Nyirenda, Dr Sheetal Silal, Dr Leanne Scott, Emeritus Prof Theo Stewart, Dr Jonas Stray and Mr Neil Watson.


Statistics in Ecology, Environment and Conservation

This interdepartmental research group is hosted in the Department of Statistical Sciences but also includes core team members from Biological Sciences, Actuarial Sciences and organisations outside UCT. We work at the intersection between statistics, ecology and environmental sciences, with an overarching theme of structured decision support. Our research focuses on conservation, animal and plant demography, climate change, understanding of biodiversity patterns, evolutionary ecology and macroecology.

Current core team members: Greg Distiller, Allan Clark , Birgit Erni, Ian Durbach, Melvin Varughese, Vernon Visser, Res Altwegg, Peter Ryan (Biological Sciences), Astrid Jarre (Biological Sciences), Les Underhill (Biological Sciences), Iain Macdonald (Actuarial Sciences), Jasper Slingby (South African Environmental Observation Network), Henning Winker (South African National Biodiversity Institute), Jonathan Colville (South African National Biodiversity Institute), Fitsum Abadi (University of the Witwatersrand), Guy Midgley (Stellenbosch University), David Borchers (University of St Andrews).