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Durham University

Research & business

Research lectures, seminars and events

The events listed in this area are research seminars, workshops and lectures hosted by Durham University departments and research institutes. If you are not a member of the University, but  wish to enquire about attending one of the events please contact the organiser or host department.


November 2019
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Events for 13 November 2019

Tathagata Basu: A Sensitivity Analysis of Adaptive Lasso

1:00pm, CM105

Sparse regression is an effcient statistical modelling technique which is of major relevance for high dimensional statistics. There are several ways of achieving sparse regression, the well-known lasso being one of them. However, lasso variable selection may not be consistent in selecting the true sparse model. Zou proposed an adaptive form of the lasso which overcomes this issue, and showed that data driven weights on the penalty term will result in a consistent variable selection procedure. We are interested in the case that the weights are informed by a prior execution of ridge regression. We carry out a sensitivity analysis of the Adaptive lasso through the power parameter of the weights, and demonstrate that, in effect, this parameter takes over the role of the usual lasso penalty parameter. In addition, we use the parameter as an input variable to obtain an error bound on the Adaptive lasso.

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Lynda Boothroyd: Cultural and ecological predictors of face and body ideals in the context of rapid globalisation

3:00pm, D110, Dawson Building

Cross-cultural studies have found a preference for heavier bodies in populations with reduced access to visual media and increased nutritional stress compared to Western populations. Similarly, early exposure to faces of a given ethnicity can lead to a cognitive processing advantage for such faces in later years. As such there is significant need for further research which unpicks the drivers of cross-cultural variation in beauty ideals. I will discuss data from research examining these issues in a Nicaraguan population experiencing significant changes in media access and broader globalisation. Using a range of converging methodologies, television consumption emerges as a predictor of body weight ideals both across and within participants, while education (perhaps indexing early exposure) affects both facial ethnicity and body weight ideals. Nutritional stress, however, shows very weak associations with any ideals. These results are discussed in the context of bio-cultural impacts on attraction and well-being.

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IAS Fellow's Public Lecture - Peace processes revisited: From negotiating conflict towards democratizing peace

5:30pm to 6:30pm, Birley Room, Hatfield College, Johanna Poutanen (Crisis Management Initiative)

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