Professor David Warton delivered the Professorial Inaugural Lecture to a large crowd at UNSW on Tuesday night.

Around 150 people assembled in the Chancellery’s Council Chamber to listen to Professor Warton’s hour-long presentation, communicating his cross-disciplinary research which integrates statistics and ecology. The proceedings were kicked off by Iain Martin, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic), who spoke briefly about the fascinating origins of Professorial Lectures in the teaching institutions of days past.

Professor Warton presented his research in an engaging, accessible, and often humorous way. The audience was treated to some (long-forgotten) 80s tunes from a ghetto blaster, resurrected especially for the occasion. We were also afforded a glimpse of Professor Warton’s fluoro socks, and images of 80s stars - long consigned to history, but still on Professor Warton’s radar!

He charted the evolution of statistics research over the decades, citing the impact of technological advancements on analysis methods and the availability of new data sets. 

He also delved into the myriad of (sometimes unexpected) areas where statistics can be used, such as in climate change research, police investigations, species research, and even for casino games.

Dean of Science Merlin Crossley wrapped up the event, but not before commending Professor Warton on his contributions to UNSW, and his soaring academic career which has seen him attract prestigious awards.

The lecture was followed by a drinks reception in the Chancellery.

Professor Warton was promoted to Professor in January 2015. He is the second of our staff members who have been invited to present as part of the Professorial Inaugural Lecture series, following on from Pierre Del Moral in June.

All of UNSW's newly promoted and recruited Professors are invited to deliver an Inaugural Lecture to mark their achievement. These are intended as celebratory and informative occasions open to all staff, students and alumni, providing a platform to hear from some of UNSW's leading academics.

This lecture series was spearheaded by UNSW Vice Chancellor, Professor Ian Jacobs.