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How an SFU Prof Uses Statistics to Give Killer Whales a Chance (Dr. Ruth Joy, BC-CfE)

Simon Fraser University’s Dr. Ruth Joy: ‘In my career I have tried to show the power of statistics.’ Photo by Christopher Cheung.
Simon Fraser University’s Dr. Ruth Joy: ‘In my career I have tried to show the power of statistics.’ Photo by Christopher Cheung.

The rooftop patio at 55 Water St. offers a lovely view of Coal Harbour — the SeaBus gliding across to North Vancouver, a monstrous white cruise ship preparing to chug back out to sea and, at this moment, a helicopter clattering down to the landing pad east of Canada Place.

Before she turned to the health of whales, Joy was working with mammals of the bipedal variety.

“I used to work at the BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS,” she says. “That’s all about finding drug treatments for people living with HIV. Now you have a tailored drug regime that is specific to you and your outcomes based on your genetics and what strains of HIV you contracted. Statistics is key to all of that. It’s a collaborative team of geneticists, statisticians and doctors — a lot of science progresses not because of one field, but because a lot of people work together. Statistics is central to that process.”

Read the full story on The Tyee.

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