11 December 2019

Rune Christiansen wins award for the best student talk


At the conference of the International Biometric Society in Adelaide, Australia, Rune received the award of the best student talk for his presentation about causal inference on spatio-temporal data.

Rune Christiansen
Rune Christiansen is presented with the prize and $500 by Dr Petra Kuhnert

Runes talk was entitled "Towards causal inference for spatio-temporal data: adjusting for time-invariant latent confounders". The paper analyzes the causal relationship between violent conflicts and deforestation in countries such as Colombia or the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The four-day conference featured many internationally established scientists as speakers.

"I feel that this prize is well-deserved," his supervisor Jonas Peters says. "Inferring causes of an event is usually difficult, but in this case, it is easy. Rune is an excellent communicator. He is not only able to solve difficult mathematical problems. He is also able to identify the essential parts of such problems and he can explain them in a clear and understandable way, even to people outside his field of expertise.  This is acknowledged by the award."

In his PhD, Rune develops a causal methodology that is used to address scientific questions in applied fields such as Earth system science or biogeography. Currently, Rune is on a three months research stay at the University of Wollongong, Australia.