skip to primary navigationskip to content

'Crossing the Barriers' Lecture Series 5 April 2016

PdOClectureApr2016image1      PdOClectureApr2016image2

'Naughty numbers in the news: the public communication of statistics'

Professor David Spiegelhalter

Tuesday 5 April
6pm Riley Auditorium
Clare College

Drinks reception and dinner to follow


Lecture Poster - please download and display in your department

Our world is increasingly data-rich, but the general standard of statistical reporting by the media is poor, whether it's risk stories of the 'cats cause cancer' variety, or the use of ghastly statistical graphics.  After (with luck) getting some cheap laughs, we shall consider whether things are getting better or worse, and make a few tentative suggestions for how academics can help.

The Crossing the Barriers lecture series aims to promote University of Cambridge postdoc research visibility by offering an environment to exchange ideas, concepts and views across different fields of research, as well as offer postdocs an experience of college life and an opportunity to meet and network.  

Postdocs from all disciplines are invited to come to the lecture and afterwards for dinner in the Great Hall at Clare College.

Professor David Spiegelhalter

David Spiegelhalter is Winton Professor for the Public Understanding of Risk, Professor of Biostatistics and Fellow of Churchill College at Cambridge University.  He leads a small team ( that attempts to improve the way in which risk and uncertainty are taught and discussed in society. He gives many presentations to schools and others, advises organisations on risk communication, and is a regular commentator on risk issues.   He presented the BBC4 documentaries ‘Tails you Win: the Science of Chance’ and ‘Climate Change by Numbers’.  He was elected FRS in 2005, awarded an OBE in 2006, and was knighted in 2014 for services to medical statistics. In 2011 he came 7th in an episode of Winter Wipeout.

Dinner menu:

Starter: Seared scallops, roast pork belly, star anise and squash purée, pineapple and lime dressing.

Vegetarian starter (pre booked): Whipped goats cheese, marinated beetroot, toasted pine nuts and bitter leaves.


Main course: Roast Guinea fowl breast, hazelnut crumb, shredded sprout and pancetta, cep purée, charred leek, haggis and potato bonbon, Madeira jus.

Vegetarian main course (pre booked): Tofu, Mushroom and leek pithivier, herb beurre blanc.


Dessert: Chocolate fondant, java cremeux, caramelised banana, banana compote, vanilla ice cream .


Registration and payment:


If you have any questions please email

Upcoming events

Extraordinary General Meeting 2017

Jan 19, 2017

Postdoc Centre, Eastwood Room

PdOC Interdisciplinary Research Club - Tuesday 24th January

Jan 24, 2017

Eastwood Room, Postdoc Centre, 16 Mill Lane, CB2 1SB

Burns Night dinner at the St John's Chop House

Jan 25, 2017

St John's Chop House, Northampton St, CB3 0AD

Upcoming events

PdOC Tweets

« January 2017 »