Manual Statistical Inference and Prediction in Climatology: A Bayesian Approach

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The highly structured nature of the observations and underlying physical processes leads to some extremely interesting computational challenges.

A Bayesian Approach

Another project I have worked is the so-called Banff challenge that I and a couple of other Harvard graduate students worked on. RCMs and GCMs are typically based on fluid dynamics, and involving the solution of partial differential equations. Bayesian methods for fitting Generalized Linear Mixed Models are often application-specific and widespread access to reliable and flexible code to fit them is hard to find. Probability Matching Priors are essentially a broad class of prior distributions designed to provide Frequentist validity of Bayesian posterior credible intervals up to some order ofapproximation.

Despite being theoretically appealling to many they are seldom used outside of the simplest cases because of the computational obstacles involved. JSM slides from a different version of the talk are available here. No statistician, of any flavor, would ever conclude this. With those errors the average of the data will exactly equal mu, so any interval that includes the point estimate for mu will contain the true value of mu.

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The intervals that pretty much anyone would create from that data with these errors would be of the form:. Entsophy: I never said the goal is intervals guaranteed to be wrong with some probability. You must be talking about someone else. And it is the frequentist who can give guarantees against model violations.

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It is true mathematically that some things will not affect the transformation of the prior probabilities into posterior probabilities but in actual applications there is a lot more that should be considered e. Suppose we have a data set which we want to model as having been generated by a generating distribution. Naturally, the form of F is unknown.

Suppose we are interested in the mean mu of F. In a Bayesian context, there are now two probability distributions of interest:.

Lightning Prediction Using Model Output Statistics

For real-valued data, this yields the normal distribution — this is true even when the generating distribution is not normal. By contrast, the frequentist context offers no clear-cut distinction there is no notion of a predictive distribution that is computed conditioned on a model assumption; instead, frequentists just attempt to approximate the generative distribution and use that as a predictive distribution.

Ignore any probabilistic assumptions; just treat a given interval procedure as a map from a point in the complete sample space to an interval in parameter space. For what regions of sample space does the map generate an interval that covers zero? The computed p-value, for example, might be.

The actual error rate is inflated, and the problem is not about long runs, but producing misleading evidence about this one hypothesis with this data! Maybe look at chapter 9 of my Error and the Growth of Experimental Knowledge which can be found off my web page. The problems with that are well-known to people who read this blog, but not to the general public, and I think Silver is helping on that score. If the prior information is sparse, all you have to do is use uninformative priors.


Priors can not contain information one does not have. In this case the data dominates but all the other advantages of using a state of knowledge rather than a state of nature followed by ad hoc assumptions are realized. If the priors become as important as the data, then at least one must rigorously define describe the priors. The priors are in plain view.

2. Basic Concepts

The Fisher approach relies on ad hoc methods to transform a state of nature into a state of knowledge. Thanks Martha, that is a wonderful article, and good for teaching too. It is obvious that he enjoyed writing this paper. In both cases, I think we're seeing a comfortable misunderstanding, comfortable in the sense that it can be pleasant to think that people following other schools of thought are simplistic in some ways.

I think that is one reason that many methodologists in psychology are such avid Bayesians: they find the openness and the directness of the Bayesian approach to be so liberating. Sherman Dorn says:. January 27, at am. Chris G says:. January 27, at pm. Jim Bouldin says:.

February 1, at am. Rahul says:. Brian says:. Wayne says:. January 28, at am. Mayo says:. John Kruschke says:. January 28, at pm. O'Rourke says:.

An education for climatologists | Nature

Entsophy says:. January 29, at am. January 29, at pm. March 1, at pm. March 2, at am. Corey says:. Jordan says:. W says:. Martha Smith says:. EJ Wagenmakers says:. February 3, at am. Andrew says:. Friday links: Bayesianism and frequentism synthesized, and more Dynamic Ecology says:.