The Simons Foundation has named Daniela Witten, Associate Professor in the Department of Statistics and Biostatistics, as a Simons Investigator in Mathematical Modeling of Living Systems. This $660,000 5-year award will support her research in statistical machine learning.
Daniela's work focuses on supervised and unsupervised learning approaches for making sense of large and messy data sets, many of which arise from biology. She has developed new frameworks for performing clustering, graphical modeling and matrix decompositions in the high-dimensional setting.
The Mathematical Modeling of Living Systems (MMLS) program, a joint endeavor of the Mathematics & Physical Sciences and Life Sciences divisions of the Simons Foundation, aims to foster a culture of theory-experiment collaboration in the life sciences similar to that prevailing in the physical sciences by supporting a community of scientists whose work breaks new conceptual or theoretical ground while relating closely to experiment in the life sciences. A broad spectrum of basic research is supported, ranging from genomics to cellular-level issues of organization, regulation, signaling and dynamics, to the properties of organisms and ecosystems. Neuroscience and evolution are also of interest. They also support the Simons Centre for the Study of Living Machines at the National Center for Biological Sciences, a division of the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research.