Professor Persi Diaconis of Stanford University is awarded an Honorary Doctorate by AUEB's Department of Statistics (September 14th, 2009)


The Athens University of Economics and Business (Department of Statistics) will be awarding an Honorary Doctorate to Professor Persi Diaconis of Stanford University, for his exceptional contributions in the field of Statistics. The ceremony will take place on September 14th, 2009 at 18.30, at the University's Ceremony Hall.

Professor Persi Diaconis is a distinguished, internationally known mathematician with major contributions in the fields of theoretical and applied probability, stochastic processes and mathematical statistics. Since 1998 he is the Mary Sunseri Professor in the Department of Statistics and Professor in the Department of Mathematics of Stanford University (California, USA).

Professor Persi Diaconis' rich academic work focuses on the study of stochastic processes in algebraic structures and in the asymptotic behavior of Markov Chains, with main emphasis on the speed of convergence. His results relate to a number of scientific fields including probability, algebra and analysis. An important part of his work deals with the application of these results in the study of the Markov Chain Monte Carlo method (MCMC), which composes a basic computational tool in areas such as Finance, Computer Science, Biology, Chemistry and Physics.

Professor Persi Diaconis has served Professor at Harvard University and at Cornell University of the USA. He has been awarded the Rollo Davidson prize of Cambridge University (1981) and has also received a number of other distinctions from European and American Universities. He is a fellow of the Institute of Mathematical Statistics and of the American Statistical Association, a member of National Academy of Sciences and a distinguished member of other organizations. He has also been active in the spread of Mathematics to the public-at-large through a large number of lectures and articles.

According to the honorary doctorate ceremony's program, addresses will be made by the Rector of AUEB Professor Gregory Prastacos and the Chairman of the Department of Statistics Professor Epaminondas Panas. Associate Professor Athanasios Yannacopoulos, Associate Chairman of the Department, will then present the work of Professor Persi Diaconis. Following, Professor Persi Diaconis will be awarded the Honorary Doctorate of the Department of Statistics and the ceremony will be closed with the speech of the honoured Professor.