The British and Irish Region once again joined forces with the Fisher Memorial Trust (FMT) to offer bursaries to support attendance at the International Biometric Conference at Riga (IBC 2022). John Addy, a bursary recipient, has kindly sent to us a report to share his experience:
The 75th International Biometric Conference (IBC) was held in the beautiful and historic Latvian capital Riga in 2022. Riga is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and has the largest population of all three Baltic capital cities. The IBC 2022 is the second IBC I have attended and the only international event of its kind run exclusively for statisticians, mathematicians, and biological scientists working in the life sciences. The IBC is one of the largest statistics conferences and provides delegates with a unique opportunity to explore different aspects of applied statistics and learn about the latest research and developments in applied statistical research in both medical, biological, and agricultural statistics. There were special historical sessions at the 75th IBC this year, giving an insight into the founding members of the society, how the IBC was set-up, and how it has changed over time.
Attending the conference has contributed to the continuing professional development of my academic career; the interdisciplinary manner of the conference allowed me to explore statistical topics outside my own area of work and engage with other professionals outside of my specialism. I particularly enjoyed the Agriculture 1 & 2, Models for Climate, Ecology & Environmental Sciences, and the Bayesian Methods 1 sessions. Particularly Hans-Peter Piepho’s talk on Tensor P-splines for plant breeding trials, it was great to hear about applied agricultural research outside of the UK.
I presented my talk “Modelling Heteroskedasticity, Overdispersion and the Impacts of Climate Change for Long-Term Hay Yield Data” on Thursday morning in the Agriculture 2 session. By presenting to the IBC I received interesting feedback on my work prompting me to consider expanding my knowledge of variance models in the future, and made valuable connections with other IBC attendees. On the Wednesday, I joined a walking tour excursion, seeing the diverse architecture of the city along with famous soviet and post-soviet monuments. At the conference dinner we were treated to traditional Latvian dancing, which was an additional treat to an already enjoyable conference. I want to thank the IBS BIR and FMT for proving funding to allow me to travel to Riga and attend this conference and make long-standing academic connections. I came away excited to continue my work in statistical development.
Here is a photo from John's presentation at IBC 2022