International Astrostatistics Association


Council Members 2018-2020, 50 words summaries

Ricardo Vilalta

Dr. Ricardo Vilalta is an associate professor in the department of computer science at the University of Houston. He holds MS and Ph.D. degrees in computer science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His research interests are in machine learning, artificial intelligence, and astroinformatics. 

Zelijko Ivezic

I am a professor of astronomy at the University of Washington, (Seattle, USA). I also serve  as the LSST Project Scientist. I am a co-recepient of the 2016 IAA "Award for Outstanding  Publication in Astrostatistics" for the book "Statistics, Data Mining and Machine Learning  in Astronomy" (Princeton University Press).

Rafael S. de Souza

I am a researcher of UNC at Chapel Hill, providing statistical expertise to the nuclear physics group. I am the current Vice-President for Development of the IAA, and the founder and chair of the Cosmostatistics Initiative (COIN). Among my contributions to IAA, worth mentioning 2,000 pro-accounts for IAA members sponsored by the web-based latex environment Overleaf, which I personally negotiated with the Company CEO. Finally, I recently published the book Bayesian Models for Astrophysical data, by Cambridge University Press 2017, and my research interests range from applications of machine learning to hierarchical Bayesian models in extragalactic Astrophysics and Cosmology.

Jianhua Huang

I am a Professor in  Statistics and Arseven/Mitchell Endowed Chair in Astronomical Statistics at Texas A&M University. IMS and ASA Fellow. Research interests include statistical machine learning, computational statistics, statistical methods for big data sets, nonparametric and semi-parametric statistical modeling and inference, functional data analysis, spatial data analysis, and applied statistics. Recently started to work with astronomers.

J. Michael Burgess

Researcher working on the prompt and afterglow emission of gamma-ray bursts.  Research interests also include statistical analysis, Bayesian modeling, and development of tools to advance multi-wavelength astronomy. Co-developer of  multi-wavelength data analysis framework which is built around employing proper statistical techniques.

Ashish Mahabal

He has participated in several large area sky surveys. His main area of expertise is data-mining for and classification of transient astronomical sources. He actively collaborates with astronomers on several continents for follow-up observations. He is one of the initial members of the US National Virtual Observatory (NVO). Member of the LSST Informatics and Statistics Science Collaboration. More generally he is interested in informatics, virtual worlds and educational outreach.

Jessica Cisewski

I am an assistant professor in the Department of Statistics and Data Science at Yale University.  My main statistical work is in astrostatistics, approximate Bayesian computation (ABC) and topological data analysis (TDA).  The main areas of astronomy that I work in are exoplanets, large-scale structure, modeling the IGM using the Lyman-alpha forest, and the stellar initial mass function.

Eric D. Feigelson

Feigelson, co-appointed as Professor of Astronomy & Astrophysics and of Statistics, has been involved in astrostatistics since the 1980s.  Research has involved bringing survival analysis and autoregressive time series modeling to bear on astronomical problems. With G.J. Babu, has helped organized cross-disciplinary research meetings (Statistical Challenges in Modern Astronomy I-V, 1991-2011), student Summer Schools in astrostatistics (2005--), and authored a prize-winning textbook (2012).  Feigelson also gives roving astrostatistics tutorials (15 countries since 2013), is current President of an IAU Commission on astrostatistics, and serves as Statistical Scientific Editor for the AAS Journals.

Jogesh Babu

Babu and Feigelson coined the term Astrostatistics in 1990s. Interests: Probabilistic Number Theory (Erdos No. 1), Bootstrap,  asymptotic theory, astrostatistics. Honors: Fellow- IMS,  ASA, AAAS. Elected Member- ISI,  IAU.   Jogesh Babu Young Researcher Travel Award in Astrostatistics established by ASA’s Astrostatistics Interest Group and AAS’s stroinformatics and Astrostatistics Working Group.

Domenico Marinucci

Professor of Probability and Mathematical Statistics, Department of Mathematics, University of Rome Tor Vergata (Department Chair, 2007-2015). Editor in Chief, Electronic Journal of Statistics; ERC Grantholder Pascal (2011-2016); Member of the Planck and Euclid Collaborations. Main Research Interests: Spherical Data Analysis and Cosmological/Astrophysical Applications.

Alan Heavens

Alan Heavens is Director of the Imperial Centre for Inference and Cosmology (ICIC), specialising in Bayesian inference in cosmology. He directs a biennial Bayesian Data Analysis Workshop, and co-chaired the first IAU Astrostatistics meeting (Lisbon 2014), followed by meetings in Crete (2016) and Valencia (2018).

Ben Wandelt

Professor Wandelt's research connects fundamental physics and cosmology with astronomical data on scales ranging from the inner halos of galaxies to the largest scales accessible to observations. He is a Planck Scientist and core team member of ESA's Planck mission, as well as a member of the Euclid mission. He has been recognized by international awards such as the Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel prize and the Sofja Kovalevskaja award, was awarded a senior Excellence Chair by the French National Research Agency (Agence Nationale de Recherche) in 2011, and named Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2015. He is also the creator of Cosmology@Home, a world-wide participatory computing platform with over 60,000 members.

Snehanshu Saha

Snehanshu Saha holds Masters Degree in Mathematical Sciences at Clemson University and Ph.D. from the Department of Mathematics at the University of Texas at Arlington in 2008. Snehanshu is a professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at PES University, Bangalore. Snehanshu's current and future research interests lie in Data Science, Machine Learning and applied computational modeling with applications in habitability problem in exoplanets and classification of supernovae.

Stefano Andreon

I am an astronomer of INAF-Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera and the current secretary of the Association. My main interest is understanding how galaxies evolve from an observational point of view and using Bayesian methods. I teach Astrostatistics in several european universities (13 in 7 countries thus far) and I'm author of the book "Bayesian Methods for the Physical Sciences" (Springer). I discovered the galaxy cluster at the highest redshift known, JKCS041 at z=1.803. In 2016, I award the status of IAA fellow.

Sarah Loebman

Sarah is a Galactic astronomer who applies statistical methodology to survey and simulation data to understand the formation and evolution of the Milky Way.  Sarah looks to Big Data tools and techniques, including database technology, to aid in the management and analysis of emergent data sets from Gaia and LSST.

Rodolfo Valentim

I'm undergraduate student on Physics at Unicamp 2002, Master Science in Astronomy 2007 and Ph.D in Astronomy 2012. My doctorate work was in Bayesian Analysis on two relativistic astrophysics problems: neutrinos from SN1987A and Neutron Stars mass distribution. I've worked in these problems currently as well as white dwarfs mass distribution and pulsar physics.

Mir Sakhawat Hossain

I am a Mathematics lover and astronomy is my passion. Now my research topic is Milky Way galaxy. My research interest is Galaxy formation, Star formation, Binary stars, Black hole, variable stars, dark matter etc. I love to solve problems with mathematics and computation.

Elections Chrono-program

The (interim) president, Joseg Babu nominated a nomination committee formed by five persons: Eric Feigelson, David Hand (chair), Vicent Martinez, Chris Koen, Jean-Luc Starck. They will produce by October 31th a list of candidates (with all relevant personal information for each of them) for renewal of the IAA council. Nominations should reach David Hand by October 31th (details in the 25th September email). All the material (personal information, program, etc.) will be made public on the IAA site (this page) by November 15th.

Members (as specified in article 5.3 of the bylaw) will vote, with voting to be concluded before Nov 30th. The 21 most voted persons will become part of the new Council, to be announced in the first week of December. As specified by the bylaw, the number of Council members shall be at least fifteen and no more than twenty-one. As announced by the chair of the Nomination Committee on November 22th, the Nominations Committee received seventeen nominations of people to serve on Council, it decided that an election was superfluous, and that the seventeen nominated IAA members would be elected to Council. The successful candidates are listed below. For more information about them, sign-in.

Once the Council is formed, the other steps (election of President, etc.) follow.

In case of oversights, errors, or discrepancies, please contact the chair of the nomination committee, David Hand.