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Commonwealth Bank of Australia

South Building 1 Harbour Street · Sydney

How to find us

Please go to Commonwealth Bank Place (South Building) in Darling Harbour.

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Data Science Sydney proudly presents our speakers for March 2019:

VARUN NAYYAR: "The Why, How and What of Bayesian Inference"
JAMES ROSS: "Measuring Financial Wellbeing"

200 seats available, first come - first served for members on the RSVP-yes list. Please ensure that you keep your RSVP up to date. If you cannot make it, please make you spot available for others as soon as possible.

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Registration opens at 5:30pm and close at 6:15pm, sharp. Food and beverages between 6pm and 6:15pm and late comers cannot be admitted.


VARUN NAYYAR: "The Why, How and What of Bayesian Inference"

About the Talk: The Why, How and What of Bayesian Inference
Deep learning has provided an answer for many problems once though unsolvable, but it's performance isn't great when the datasets are small and/or we wish to understand causality. More generally, when datasets are a few thousand rows, even cross validation becomes less helpful when doing analysis as we are still subject to the 1/sqrt(N) relationship to sample deviation.
These are the Data Science problems of tomorrow and Bayesian Inference is the best framework to approach such questions. In fact, if you've looked at Probabilistic Graphical Models, you've already looked at Bayesian Inference.
Most Bayesian discussions get stuck on theory, so this talk will focus on building on the theory to show how current ML procedures link to issues of frequentism and show a few real world examples of Bayesian Inference outperforming frequentism, before concluding with some resources and ideas to help you bring Bayesianism into your work.

About the speaker: Varun has been a data scientist from before the title was coined, having been drawn to the mix of computer science and mathematics which had him so enamoured he completed two honours theses in Bayesian Inference which had him programming GPUs before Tensorflow. He's since had a varied career working in startups, tech, HFT and even a brief stint with parliament dealing with very diverse questions, data sizes and goals. Additionally, Varun is active in the open source community for python & R and if you ever draw a histogram in python, you're likely running some of his code.

JAMES ROSS: "Measuring Financial Wellbeing"

About the talk: A collaboration between Melbourne Institute and Commonwealth Bank of Australia has developed the CBA-MI Reported and Observed Financial Wellbeing Scales. These are two first-of-their kind measures that combine self-reports of people’s financial experiences with bank-record indicators of wellbeing outcomes. The scales will help CBA, other organisations and policymakers to design policies, products and services to improve Australians’ financial wellbeing.

In this presentation, we will investigate the analytical process used to transform the multifaceted notion of financial wellbeing into a robust pair of scales. We will also explore some unique insights produced as a result of the work.

About the speaker: James is an associate data scientist at the Commonwealth Bank of Australia. He co-authored the first technical report published by Melbourne Institute and Commonwealth Bank of Australia. At work, James develops models for transactional sequence data. He also enjoys research in computational combinatorics with a focus on hypergraphs. Otherwise, he is busy perfecting his home brew, or hiking in the mountains.