Welcome to the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science

The Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science is among the top academic units for statistical and actuarial science in the world and is home to more than 40 research active full-time faculty working in diverse and exciting areas. The Department is also home to over 900 undergraduate students and about 150 graduate students in programs including Actuarial Science, Biostatistics, Quantitative Finance, Statistics, and Statistics-Computing.

We are located on University of Waterloo main campus, which is located at the heart of Canada's Technology Triangle about 100 kilometers west of Toronto.

  1. June 19, 2017Professor Richard J. Cook is a winner of a University of Waterloo 2017 Award of Excellence in Graduate Supervision.Professor Richard J. Cook

    Prof. Cook has been a faculty member in the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science since 1995. He is one of the most influential biostatisticians in the Canadian and international medical community and has been awarded many distinctions and several prestigious awards for his methodological research work.

    Over his career, Prof. Cook has supervised 19 doctoral students, 10 post-doctoral fellows and 29 master’s students. His students have successfully obtained academic positions and have established themselves as independent researchers or taken on leading scientist roles in the pharmaceutical industry or biomedical community. The quality and rigor of the research work by students under Prof. Cook’s supervision sets a very high standard. His PhD students have earned many major awards including: 4 winners of the annual Statistical Society of Canada’s Pierre-Robillard Award for the best PhD thesis; 6 winners of the annual Sprott Scholarship Award for the best PhD thesis proposal in the department; 3 winners of the Distinguished Student Award from the International Society for Clinical Biostatistics and the International Biometrics Society Eastern North American Region; and one winner of the Canadian Journal of Statistics Prize for the best paper of the year.

  2. June 15, 2017Mike Zhu, David Saunders, and Mary Hardy win Best Paper award at the International Association of Actuaries ColloquiumMike Zhu

    Mike (Xiao Bai) Zhu won the Best Paper (theory) award, jointly with his supervisors David Saunders and Mary Hardy, for their article “Valuation of a Bermudan-DB-Underpin Option” at the International Association of Actuaries Colloquium on Pension Benefits and Social Security (PBSS) , held on June 4-7, 2017 in Cancun, Mexico.

  3. June 15, 2017Congratulations to Professor Richard J. Cook, Gold Medal winner from the Statistical Society of CanadaRichard Cook

    The 2017 recipient of the Gold Medal of the Statistical Society of Canada (SSC) is Professor Richard Cook. The Gold Medal is awarded to a person who has made outstanding contributions to statistics, or to probability, either to mathematical developments or in applied work. It is intended to honour current leaders in their field.

    To learn more about Richard's accomplishments, please visit the SSC website.

    "To Richard John Cook, in recognition of his outstanding contributions to statistical theory and methodology, particularly in the areas of event history analysis, analysis of longitudinal data, and design and analysis of clinical trials; for exceptional accomplishments in collaborative medical research; for his outstanding record as a teacher and mentor; and for his leadership in biostatistics in Canada and abroad."

    SSc Award citation


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  1. July 11, 2017Department Seminar by Jilles Vreeken, Max Planck Institute for Informatics and Saarland University

    Causal Inference by Compression

    Determining cause from effect is perhaps the most fundamental problem in science. We are interested in inferring the most likely direction between two random variables X and Y given only observational data over their joint distribution. That is, we want to identify whether X causes Y , whether Y causes X, or whether they are merely correlated. Traditional methods, that rely on conditional independence tests, cannot decide between the Markov equivalent classes of X -> Y and Y -> X.

  2. Sep. 14, 2017Department Seminar by Jianwen Cai, University of North Carolina

    Title and Abstract TBD

  3. Sep. 21, 2017Department Seminar by Gary Chan, University of Washington

    Title and Abstract TBD

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Meet our people

Paul Marriott

Paul Marriott


Contact Information:
Paul Marriott

Research interests

Professor Marriott's research activity is split between theoretical and applied work.