This proposal seeks to secure travel support for junior U.S. researchers (graduate students, postdoctoral researchers and junior faculty within three years of completion of their terminal degree) to participate in the 8th Workshop on Bayesian Nonparametrics, to be held in Veracruz, Mexico, from June 26 to 30, 2011. The objective of the meeting is to bring together experts and young talented scientists devoted to the study and application of Bayesian nonparametric techniques. The workshop is organized under the auspices of the International Society for Bayesian Analysis (ISBA) and counts with a scientific committee formed by renowned international scientists. The meeting will include four tutorials on special topics, a series of invited and contributed talks, and a contributed poster session. This is the 8th in series of (mostly) biannual meetings held internationally since 1997, and is the premier venue for dissemination of research in Bayesian nonparametrics.

Bayesian nonparametric (BNP) methods constitute an extremely important area of research in the statistical sciences, which has recently generated enormous interest and has become one of the fastest growing areas of research within Bayesian statistics. Applications of BNP methods include areas as diverse as genetics, finance, sociology and machine learning. Providing support for junior researchers who do not have access to other sources of funding to attend the most important international gathering of scientists working on one the fastest growing areas of statistical sciences is key to maintaining the current leadership of American institutions in this field. The conference will include a series of activities specially designed to maximize the active participation of young researchers and to provide them with as many opportunities for interaction with other young researchers and with more senior colleagues. In addition, the conference will provide opportunities for these young researchers to disseminate widely the results of their work, not only through contributed talks and posters, but also by facilitating the publication of peer-reviewed papers. Due to the location of the meeting, and the opportunity for travel award recipients to participate for free in the Mexican Workshop on Bayesian Statistics (TAMEB). It is expected that the workshop will attract junior Hispanic/Latino U.S. researchers, providing them the opportunity to engage colleagues from Latin American and the rest of the world.

Project Report

This project provided funding for 12 junior researchers (graduate students and postdoctoral researchers) to attend the 8th Workshop on Bayesian Nonparametric Methods, which was held in Veracruz, Mexico, between June 26 and June 30, 2011. This group included at least three members of underrepresented groups in STEM disciplines. Each participant was awarded $666.00 to offset travel expenses to the conference (transportation, lodging and meals); conference registration was waved for these participants by the organizing society (ISBA, the International Society for Bayesian Analysis). The rest of the travel expenses were covered by either by other individual research grants or out-of-pocket by the participants. The workshops on Bayesian nonparametric methods, which are held biannually, are the premier international event in the field. The 8th Workshop was attended by over 120 participants from all over the world; funding from this award made it possible for the U.S. to have a substantial representation of junior researchers. This is important both for the individual researchers involved (who get an invaluable opportunity to present and discuss their work with the most important international experts in the field) and the US statistics community in general (as it provides an opportunity for US researchers to exchange information and results with foreign counterparts, enriching the quality of US-based research). Detailed information about the scientific program can be found on the web at

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Division of Mathematical Sciences (DMS)
Standard Grant (Standard)
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Gabor J. Szekely
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University of California Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz
United States
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