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Norman Fenton is Professor of Risk Information Management at Queen Mary London University and is also a Director of Agena, a company that specialises in risk management for critical systems. Norman is a mathematician by training whose current research focuses on critical decision-making and, in particular, on quantifying uncertainty. This typically involves analysing and predicting the probabilities of unknown events using causal, probabilistic models (Bayesian networks). This type of reasoning enables improved assessment by taking account of both statistical data where available and also expert judgment, providing more powerful insights and better decision making than is possible from purely data-driven solutions. Hence, the approach can be summarized as 'smart data rather than big data'. Applications include law and forensics (Norman has been an expert witness in major criminal and civil cases), medicine, security, software reliability, transport safety and reliability, finance, and football prediction. Norman also has a special interest in raising public awareness of the importance of probability theory and Bayesian reasoning in everyday life (including how to present such reasoning in simple lay terms) and he maintains a website dedicated to this and also a blog focusing on probability and the law.
Norman has been PI in grants totalling over £10million. He currently leads an EPRSC Digital Health Technologies Project (PAMBAYESIAN) and a Leverhulme Trust grant (CAUSAL-DYNAMICS). In 2014 Norman was awarded a prestigious European Research Council Advanced Grant (BAYES-KNOWLEDGE) in which the 'smart data' approach evolved.
Norman has published 7 books and over 300 articles, and has provided consulting to many major companies world-wide. His book "Risk Assessment and Decision Analysis using Bayesian Networks" with Martin Neil (first edition 2012, second edition 2018) was the first to bring Bayesian networks to a general audience. His book “Software Metrics: A Rigorous and Practical Approach" (now in its third edition) has over 6000 citations.
Norman's previous academic posts were at City University (Professor in the Centre for Software Reliability, 1989-2000), South Bank (Director of Centre for Systems and Software Engineering, 1984-89), Oxford University Maths Institute and Wolfson College Oxford (Post Doctoral Research Fellow, 1982-84) and University College Dublin (Research Fellow, 1981-82). He was a Simons Fellow at the Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences, Cambridge (2016), and was a visiting researcher at GMD, Germany (1988).
Norman is an Affiliated Professor to the University of Haifa, Israel (since 2006), a Chartered Engineer (member of the IET), a Chartered Mathematician (Associate Fellow of the Institute of Maths and Aplication), a Fellow of the British Computer Society, and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.
Bayes (2 minute video). More videos here.
Fenton website last updated on 17 Oct, 2019
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