Department of Mathematical Sciences

BUC series success continues to grow with workshop in Mexico City

Wed Mar 30 15:53:00 BST 2016

(by Dorka Fekete, SAMBa student)

In February a team of seven academics and PhD students travelled from Bath to Mexico. Hosted by the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), they delivered the second workshops in the BUC (Bath-UNAM-CIMAT) series “Big Data and Statistics in Environmental Research”.

BUC is a collaborative research project between the two Mexican institutions and Bath with the workshop series funded by grants from the University of Bath’s International Relations Office, the two Mexican institutions (CIMAT and UNAM) and the Newton Fund. The aim is to expand current interactions between doctoral students and academic staff from the institutions involved.

The BUC2 workshop continued the theme of BUC1. Bath academics Dr Gavin Shaddick, Dr Daniel Simpson and Dr Karim Anaya-Izquierdo delivered the lectures, while SAMBa PhD students Matt Thomas and Dorka Fekete and Statistics PhD student Alice Davis guided the computer labs.

dan-simpson-lecturing-at-unamThe PhD conference featured speakers from both Bath and UNAM, with Matt, Dorka and Alice presenting their current research. Matt and Dorka had also presented at BUC1 and this was a great opportunity for them to talk about the progress they have made since November.

matt-thomas-and-dan-simpson-helping-train-mexican-studentsThe number of participants shows the continuing success of the BUC series. The short course ran with a full house of over 50 participants, including 28 students from UNAM and 13 from CIMAT, many of whom had previously attended BUC1. A number of them are planning to come to Bath in June to participate in the third workshop in the series on advanced modelling in space and time.

Dr Gavin Shaddick, Chair of the BUC initiative and SAMBa co-Director said: “It is fantastic to see the BUC initiative go from strength to strength. BUC2 was a huge success and this is largely due to the enthusiastic participation of the PhD students, both from Mexico and Bath.

“The students did an exceptional job of preparing material and providing training in state-of-the-art statistical techniques. Together with the enthusiasm shown in presenting their own research, they are inspiring future statistical applied mathematicians and are the embodiment of the ideas behind the BUC initiative.”

The next BUC event (BUC3) takes place at CIMAT in May. The focus will be on probability and it will use the successful format of the SAMBa Integrative Think Tanks, with participants working on problem formulation in small groups, adapted for a research environment.