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Written by one of the preeminent researchers in the field, this book provides a comprehensive exposition of modern analysis of causation. It shows how causality has grown from a nebulous concept into a mathematical theory with significant applications in the fields of statistics, artificial intelligence, economics, philosophy, cognitive science, and the health and social sciences. Judea Pearl presents and unifies the probabilistic, manipulative, counterfactual, and structural approaches to causation and devises simple mathematical tools for studying the relationships between causal connections and statistical associations. Cited in more than 2,100 scientific publications, it continues to liberate scientists from the traditional molds of statistical thinking. In this revised edition, Judea Pearl elucidates thorny issues, answers readers' questions, and offers a panoramic view of recent advances in this field of research. Causality will be of interest to students and professionals in a wide variety of fields. Dr Judea Pearl has received the 2011 Rumelhart Prize for his leading research in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and systems from The Cognitive Science Society.
Many of the concepts and terminology surrounding modern causal inference can be quite intimidating to the novice. Judea Pearl presents a book ideal for beginners in statistics, providing a comprehensive introduction to the field of causality. Examples from classical statistics are presented throughout to demonstrate the need for causality in resolving decision-making dilemmas posed by data. Causal methods are also compared to traditional statistical methods, whilst questions are provided at the end of each section to aid student learning.
This new edition aims to convince social scientists to take a counterfactual approach to the core questions of their fields.
Most questions in social and biomedical sciences are causal in nature: what would happen to individuals, or to groups, if part of their environment were changed? In this groundbreaking text, two world-renowned experts present statistical methods for studying such questions. This book starts with the notion of potential outcomes, each corresponding to the outcome that would be realized if a subject were exposed to a particular treatment or regime. In this approach, causal effects are comparisons of such potential outcomes. The fundamental problem of causal inference is that we can only observe one of the potential outcomes for a particular subject. The authors discuss how randomized experiments allow us to assess causal effects and then turn to observational studies. They lay out the assumptions needed for causal inference and describe the leading analysis methods, including matching, propensity-score methods, and instrumental variables. Many detailed applications are included, with special focus on practical aspects for the empirical researcher.
Head hits cause brain damage - but not always. Should we ban sport to protect athletes? Exposure to electromagnetic fields is strongly associated with cancer development - does that mean exposure causes cancer? Should we encourage old fashioned communication instead of mobile phones to reduce cancer rates? According to popular wisdom, the Mediterranean diet keeps you healthy. Is this belief scientifically sound? Should public health bodies encourage consumption of fresh fruit and vegetables? Severe financial constraints on research and public policy, media pressure, and public anxiety make such questions of immense current concern not just to philosophers but to scientists, governments, public bodies, and the general public. In the last decade there has been an explosion of theorizing about causality in philosophy, and also in the sciences. This literature is both fascinating and important, but it is involved and highly technical. This makes it inaccessible to many who would like to use it, philosophers and scientists alike. This book is an introduction to philosophy of causality - one that is highly accessible: to scientists unacquainted with philosophy, to philosophers unacquainted with science, and to anyone else lost in the labyrinth of philosophical theories of causality. It presents key philosophical accounts, concepts and methods, using examples from the sciences to show how to apply philosophical debates to scientific problems.
Nowadays bioinformaticians and geneticists are faced with myriad high-throughput data usually presenting the characteristics of uncertainty, high dimensionality and large complexity. These data will only allow insights into this wealth of so-called 'omics' data if represented by flexible and scalable models, prior to any further analysis. At the interface between statistics and machine learning, probabilistic graphical models (PGMs) represent a powerful formalism to discover complex networks of relations. These models are also amenable to incorporating a priori biological information. Network reconstruction from gene expression data represents perhaps the most emblematic area of research where PGMs have been successfully applied. However these models have also created renewed interest in genetics in the broad sense, in particular regarding association genetics, causality discovery, prediction of outcomes, detection of copy number variations, and epigenetics. This book provides an overview of the applications of PGMs to genetics, genomics and postgenomics to meet this increased interest. A salient feature of bioinformatics, interdisciplinarity, reaches its limit when an intricate cooperation between domain specialists is requested. Currently, few people are specialists in the design of advanced methods using probabilistic graphical models for postgenomics or genetics. This book deciphers such models so that their perceived difficulty no longer hinders their use and focuses on fifteen illustrations showing the mechanisms behind the models. Probabilistic Graphical Models for Genetics, Genomics and Postgenomics covers six main themes: (1) Gene network inference (2) Causality discovery (3) Association genetics (4) Epigenetics (5) Detection of copy number variations (6) Prediction of outcomes from high-dimensional genomic data. Written by leading international experts, this is a collection of the most advanced work at the crossroads of probabilistic graphical models and genetics, genomics, and postgenomics. The self-contained chapters provide an enlightened account of the pros and cons of applying these powerful techniques.

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