May 16, 2016

Dr. James Berger

Dr. James Berger

James O. Berger, PhD, winner of the 2016 Greenberg Distinguished Lecturer Award, presented three talks on May 12 and 13 as part of the 2016 Bernard G. Greenberg Distinguished Lecture Series.

The series is hosted by the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health’s Department of Biostatistics.

Berger, Arts and Sciences Professor of Statistics in Duke University’s Department of Statistical Sciences, was selected from a number of notable candidates by a majority vote of the Gillings School’s biostatistics faculty.

Berger’s lectures included “The Use of Rejection Odds and Rejection Ratios in Testing Hypotheses,” [PDF] “The Progress on the Foundations of Bayesian-Frequentist Unification” [PDF] and “Bayesian Multiplicity Control” [PDF].

Michael R. Kosorok, PhD, W.R. Kenan Jr. Distinguished Professor and chair of biostatistics at the Gillings School, said that candidates for the award are prominent biostatisticians or statisticians who have made important contributions to their fields and whose work is of particular interest to Gillings School faculty members and students.

“Dr. Berger is widely regarded as one of the most influential statisticians in history, with many important, fundamental contributions to biostatistics and statistics,” Kosorok said.

Since earning a doctoral degree in mathematics in 1974, Berger’s career has had great impact. With more than 200 peer-reviewed publications, he has conducted important studies in theory, methods and applications, including work having a significant impact upon the theory and practice of biostatistics. He has made significant contributions to objective Bayesian analysis and methods, and has written highly influential papers on concerns about using p-values for evidence and on the benefits of using Bayes factors for model selection and prediction.

The annual award and lecture series honors Bernard Greenberg, PhD, a visionary leader who founded the UNC Department of Biostatistics in 1949 and served as its chair for more than 20 years. From 1972 to 1982, Greenberg was dean of UNC’s School of Public Health.


Gillings School of Global Public Health contact: David Pesci, director of communications, (919) 962-2600 or

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