Professor Adrian Baddeley: a leading researcher in spatial statistics
Professor Adrian Baddeley is a leading researcher in spatial statistics and a Science Fellow with CSIRO.
25 June 2010 | Updated 14 October 2011
Professor Adrian Baddeley is a:
leading researcher in spatial statistics (the analysis of spatial information such as digital images and survey maps)
world authority on stereology (the analysis of microscope images using statistical sampling principles).
Professor Baddeley is currently Professor of Statistics at the University of Western Australia and a Science Fellow with CSIRO.
In his work with CSIRO, Professor Baddeley contributes to the research areas of Environmental Modelling and Monitoring and Computational and Simulation Science.
His current research is into the data analysis of spatial point patterns and includes the development of statistical software.
"Professor Baddeley has done outstanding work in the difficult area of statistical analysis of digital images and spatial data."
Citation for the Australian Academy of Science 2001 Hannan Medal in Statistical Science
Professor Baddeley was appointed a research fellow at Trinity College Cambridge, United Kingdom (UK), in his second year of postgraduate study, followed by a lectureship in statistics at the University of Bath, UK.
He joined the University of Western Australia in 1994 and recently moved to a joint appointment with CSIRO.
Professor Baddeley’s approach to statistical problems is to take an original route when standard statistical techniques prove unsuccessful.
Rather than abandoning classical statistical concepts, Professor Baddeley tries to dig deep to find the fundamental principles that determine a correct statistical approach to spatial data.
Outside the statistical community, Professor Baddeley is best known as a world leader in the field of stereology and especially as the inventor of the vertical sections technique.
Stereology is the science of interpreting microscope images.
It deals with the geometrical complexities of interpreting a two-dimensional slice of a solid material (rock, metal, biological tissue) and the statistical challenges of drawing conclusions from a tiny sample of material.
Classical methods of stereology require that the cutting plane be randomly oriented.
This is a severe restriction on the scope of applications.
In 1983, Professor Baddeley developed a revolutionary new stereological method in which the cutting plane is ‘vertical’ (parallel to a fixed axis, or perpendicular to a fixed surface).
This made it possible to apply stereology to:
cylindrical core samples - for example, bone biopsies in medicine, core samples in soil science
samples of flat materials - for example, skin biopsies
oriented samples - for example, metal fracture profiles, longitudinal sections of muscle.
Professor Baddeley’s work on vertical sections overturned one of the central assumptions in theoretical stereology, leading to a revolution in theory and a further, vast expansion of the scope of practical stereological methods.
Professor Baddeley has been awarded a:
Bachelor of Arts with First Class Honours in Pure Mathematics and Statistics, from the Australian National University, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, in 1976
Doctor of Philosophy in Statistics, University of Cambridge, UK, in 1980.
Professor Baddeley is a recipient of numerous honours including:
being named the 2008 Georges Matheron Lecturer by the International Association of Mathematical Geology
Pitman Medal from the Statistical Society of Australia, 2004
Centenary Medal from the Australian Government, 2001, for service to Australian society and science in mathematics and statistics
Hannan Medal in Statistical Science from the Australian Academy of Science, 2001
Elected Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science, 2000
Australian Mathematical Society Medal, 1995.
Professor Baddeley has also served:
on the Council of the International Bernoulli Society
on the Council of the Australian Mathematical Society
as Australasian Vice-President of the International Society for Stereology
editorial boards for the:
Journal of the Royal Statistical Society (Series B)
Advances in Applied Probability
Journal of Microscopy (Oxford).
Read more about Programs to allow researchers to visit CSIRO Mathematics, Informatics and Statistics.