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Victoria appoints Chair in Statistics


Victoria University has appointed Dr Konstantin (Kostya) Borovkov, 42, to a Chair in Statistics.

Dr Ross Renner, Head of Victoria’s School of Mathematical and Computing Sciences, said the university was extremely fortunate to have appointed Dr Borovokov, who has an established international reputation in probability theory.

Dr Renner said Dr Borovkov would enhance Victoria’s existing strengths in theoretical mathematics and computer science.

“What’s happening here at Victoria is very special,” he said. “With 10 Marsden grants totaling $2.7 million, we are New Zealand’s leading centre for ‘blue sky’ mathematical and computer science research. Dr Borovkov will boost our strengths in these areas even further.”

Dr Renner says Dr Borovkov has flair, an energetic style and a gift for teaching. “He has even had a stint at fronting a popular science television programme in Russia,” he said.

Dr Borovkov, who comes from a dynasty of famous Russian scientists, has a fascinating family background. His father, A.A. Borovkov, is an internationally renowned statistician, and his grandparents were directly involved in the Russian space programme. Dr Borovkov’s website shows pictures of “family vehicles” that include the Vostok launcher and the Vostok spacecraft.

Dr Borovkov has a Cand Sci (the equivalent of a PhD) and a Dr Sci (the top academic degree in Russia) in physics and mathematics from the Steklov Mathematical Institute, Moscow, where he also worked as a Leading Research Fellow.

He won the State Prize of the USSR for Young Scientists in 1987 and an Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellowship in the early 1990s, which took him to Germany. He has been at the University of Melbourne since 1997.

Dr Borovkov will start at Victoria in mid-August, where he will lead the Statistics Group of the School of Mathematical and Computing Sciences. He will teach probability theory, his area of expertise, and a wide range of other topics in statistics.

Kostya's homepage can be found at http://www.ms.unimelb.edu.au/~kostya/

Victoria University Wellington

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