University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Cavendish HEP Seminars > Evidence is all you need: Nested Sampling for particle physics

Evidence is all you need: Nested Sampling for particle physics

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The Bayesian vs. Frequentist debate has raged for many years in particle physics, with the battle lines largely drawn and a set of established techniques falling firmly in favour of frequentist thinking. The same is largely true on the cosmology side of the fence, where the dominant paradigm is decidedly Bayesian. This is a curious fact that is worth considering, how have two adjacent fields that are so similar in ultimate goals and theoretical basis ended up at loggerheads when it comes to inference? To try and unravel some of this mystery, this talk will discuss the ‘Rosetta Stone’ of inference tasks in particle physics – searching for bumps in smoothly falling spectra at colliders. I will aim to extract the signal (the higgs) from the noise (the diphoton background), however in doing so I will really be attempting to extract the signal (why we use Nested Sampling so much in Cosmology) from the noise (the Bayesian vs. Frequentist debate). An “evidence based” approach (powered by Nested Sampling) affords unique perspectives on some long standing inference problems for High Energy Physics.

This talk is part of the Cavendish HEP Seminars series.

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