Leeds-Liverpool joint virtual workshop (Part 2) - 4th June 2020

This is second day of the event held virtually at the University of Liverpool and jointly organized by Tiziano de Angelis (University of Leeds) and Julia Eisenberg and Ehsan Azmoodeh (University of Liverpool).

Place and Time:

Date: Thursday 04/06/2020 Time: 14:00pm via Zoom  




Title of the Talk

14:00 – 14:35

Matt Aldridge
(University of Leeds)

Group testing for the Coronavirus

14:40 – 14:50

Coffee break


14:50 – 15:25

Ehsan Azmoodeh
(University of Liverpool)

Stein Operators

15:25 – 16:00

Conclusions and remarks


Matt Aldrige (University of Leeds)

Title: Group testing for the Coronavirus

Abstract: When testing for a disease, one can test each person individually. Alternatively, for some diseases, one can take samples from many people, mix those samples together, and tests the pooled sample. If the pooled test comes back negative, all those people are disease-free, while if the pooled test comes back positive, at least one of those people has the disease, and further tests are required to find out which ones. If the disease is not too common, this second method, known as "group testing", can require fewer tests than testing each person individually. The news over the past few months has often mentioned that there is a shortage of tests for the new coronavirus and the disease COVID-19 that it causes. Could group testing use these limited tests more efficiently? We will look at some recent ideas about how best to do this.

Ehsan Azmoodeh (University of Liverpool)

Title: Stein Operators

Abstract: Stein method is a powerful technique to measure the distance between two probability measures for the so-called integral probability distances. The method was introduced by Charles Max Stein (1920–2016) early seventies in Proceedings of the Sixth Berkeley Symposium on Mathematical Statistics and Probability consisting of three fundamental steps. For every given continuous target probability measure, to build up Stein device, the first step is to construct the associated Stein operators which are characterizing differential operators. In this talk, we introduce a new mechanism for constructing such operators for Gaussian polynomial distributions. If time permits, we discuss shortly some algebraic aspects of Stein operators. The talk is based on a joint work with Dario Gasbarra (University of Helsinki) and Robert Gaunt (University of Manchester).