Risk Assessment with Bayesian Causal Networks: Smart Data not Big Data

A Public Lecture by Norman Fenton

24th May 2022 at 15:00 - 16:00 (Finnish time)
Arranged remotely, Zoom: https://aalto.zoom.us/j/67558444604  
Systems Analysis Laboratory
Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis
Aalto University School of Science
Recording: View here


Misunderstandings about risk, statistics and probability often lead to flawed decision-making in many critical areas such as medicine, finance, law, defence, and transport. The ‘big data’ revolution was intended to at least partly address these concerns by removing reliance on subjective judgments. However, even where (relevant) big data are available there are fundamental limitations to what can be achieved through pure machine learning techniques. This talk will explain the successes and challenges in using causal probabilistic models of risk in providing powerful decision-support and accurate predictions by a ‘smart data’, rather than ‘big data’ approach.


Norman Fenton is Professor of Risk Information Management at Queen Mary University of London and a Director of Agena, a company that specialises in risk management for critical systems. He is a mathematician by training with current focus  on critical decision-making and, in particular, on quantifying uncertainty using causal, probabilistic models that combine data and knowledge (Bayesian networks). The approach can be summarized as 'smart data rather than big data'. Applications include law and forensics (he has been an expert witness in major criminal and civil cases), health, security, software reliability, transport safety and reliability, finance, and football prediction.

Personal website: https://www.normanfenton.com 
University website: http://eecs.qmul.ac.uk/profiles/fentonnorman.html 


This event is open to all interested participants. The lecture will last about 45 minutes, followed by questions and discussions. Join the event with this Zoom link: https://aalto.zoom.us/j/67558444604. Zoom quick guide: https://www.aalto.fi/en/services/zoom-quick-guide

At 12:15 (Finnish time) on 25 May 2022, Prof. Fenton will be the official opponent in the public defence of Pekka Laitilas's Doctoral Dissertation entitled Advancing incorporation of expert knowledge into Bayesian networks. The defence will be held in Lecture Hall H304 (Otakaari 1) and via remote technology at https://aalto.zoom.us/j/67558444604.

Aalto Systems Forum

The growing challenge of our time is the need to understand and to manage wholes, i.e. systems. Problems in technology, economy, organisations and the environment are strongly interconnected, include multiple criteria and evolve dynamically over time. Systems Sciences as a field of scientific inquiry develops tools and approaches which help address these problems.

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Aalto Systems Forum is organized by the Systems Analysis Laboratory research group at the Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis of Aalto University School of Sciencehttp://sal.aalto.fi/en/aaltosystemsforum/