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AI expert joins Bath IMI

World-renowned artificial intelligence and Big Data expert joins Bath's Institute for Mathematical Innovation

Posted by Rebecca Paddick | June 02, 2016 | Higher education

Mike Tipping, a world-renowned expert in the fields of machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) and Big Data, has joined the University of Bath’s Institute for Mathematical Innovation (IMI) as Professor of Data Science.

Affiliated both with the departments of Mathematical Sciences and Computer Science, Professor Tipping’s appointment is a significant milestone in IMI’s work to promote the importance of Data Science in research activities across the University.  This will involve facilitating greater collaboration between researchers of different disciplines as well as working with businesses to solve industrial problems.

Professor Tipping said: “Data Science is an increasingly important discipline in a diverse range of areas. For example in finance, each credit card transaction is checked against algorithms to spot fraud by identifying uncharacteristic spending for individual users.

“Big data is also used in processing medical data, such as the 100,000 Genomes Project, which aims to use genome sequence data to learn more about diseases such as cancer.

“With Data Science becoming an increasingly relevant discipline, I’m genuinely excited to be joining IMI at this time. The Institute offers a compelling opportunity to pursue interesting research that has far-reaching application potential. I’m very much looking forward to playing my part in IMI’s development and to contributing to the broader research landscape at the University of Bath.”

Mike’s appointment is a key part of the strategic development of IMI, and I am delighted that he is joining us. Mike brings a unique blend of academic and business experience, and a wide range of research interests in statistics, computer science, and application areas

Before joining the University, Professor Tipping was Director of Science at Cambridge start-up Featurespace. The company has developed a new form of data analysis named “Adaptive Behavioural Analytics”, which is used to prevent fraud in some of the world’s largest banks and insurance companies.

This week the company announced new funding of £6.2m to expand into the US market, following a deal with US credit card payments processor TSYS, a project initiated by Professor Tipping.

He was a member of the team that started Microsoft’s Research Laboratory in Cambridge in 1998, and he has also run his own statistical consultancy business.

Combining applied mathematics and probability theory with computer science, his research interests include the application of Bayesian probabilistic models to machine learning and statistical pattern recognition.

Professor Tipping has used these models in handwriting recognition, bioinformatics, information retrieval, image processing and interactive entertainment. He also invented and built the “Drivatar” model still used in Microsoft’s Xbox title “Forza Motorsport”.

Professor Jonathan Dawes, Director of IMI added: “Mike’s appointment is a key part of the strategic development of IMI, and I am delighted that he is joining us. Mike brings a unique blend of academic and business experience, and a wide range of research interests in statistics, computer science, and application areas. His appointment will allow us to promote the relevance of Data Science to research activities in many parts of the University, and showcase it as a central part of IMI’s vision. I’m looking forward to working with him as IMI grows and develops in the future.”

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