David Aldous's Home Page

I have retired from Berkeley, effective end-June 2018. I now live near Seattle and am an Affiliate Professor (a.k.a. unpaid academic) in the UW Mathematics Department. However, I continue with light-duty research and professional activities. In particular I have been updating and expanding my open research problems page. But I am focussing more on my ongoing "Probability and the Real World" and my "Essays and Musings" activities, below.

Recent activities

Steven Pinker's recent book Rationality strikes me as a well-written and engaging overview of a wide range of topics, mostly relating to probability and statistics, at a freshman level, but it is curiously lacking in novelty. See my amazon.com review.

Outside my professional competence, except for implicit assessments of probabilities of future catastrophes, I have reviewed the eloquent advocacy of longtermism in the new book

Long review of an excellent new textbook-survey

A shorter version has appeared on MathSciNet. This field offers substantial scope for future challenging theorem-proof mathematics research.

My reviews of three highly recommended new non-technical books:

I like to think of my current research as opening up minor lines of enquiry outside the currently active topics within mathematical probability. Here are brief comments. My page Essays and Musings maintains a large collection of items addressed to students and faculty in probability and statistics and the broader mathematical sciences. Some recent additions:

Regarding the relationship between judgments of a submitted paper by referees/editors and subsequent impact of the paper, measured by citations, I have added some small-scale data to my page Reviewer opinions versus subsequent citations.

July 2018 official launch! Previously haphazard material now organized and expanded.
"Probability and the Real World" project
What aspects of the real world involve chance? What does mathematical probability tell us about those aspects? What concepts from mathematical probability can be illustrated by interesting real data? This web site records my efforts to articulate some answers to such questions. It is aimed at readers who have either read some "popular science" style account of probability, or taken a college course involving probability.

Short cut to Reviews of non-technical books relating to Probability.

My Research Site
Short cut to Papers and preprints and to slides from recent talks and to open research problems.


For the record, here is a complete list of courses since 2001 (only the most recent version of each course is listed).

For many years I supervised these Undergraduate Research Projects.


Probability Approximations via the Poisson Clumping Heuristic Springer, 1989
Reversible Markov Chains and Random Walks on Graphs (with Jim Fill) Draft chapters

Professional Activities

Personal stuff
Humor, photos, outside activities, .......

Contact information

Email address: aldousdj@berkeley.edu