American Statistical Association
New York City
Metropolitan Area Chapter

The Levin Lecture Series
Department of Biostatistics Colloquium

Columbia University



Bruce Levin, Ph.D.
Professor of Biostatistics
Columbia University
Mailman School of Public Health

Host: Department of Biostatistics


The Levin-Robbins-Leu family of sequential subset selection procedures allows sequential elimination of inferior treatments, sequential recruitment of superior treatments, or both. The family possesses an extremely useful and theoretically important lower bound for the probability of correct selection and other interesting selection events, but proving this rigorously in complete generality has been challenging. I will begin by explaining the applied background of the problem, then I will review what is known about the lower bound formula, and finally present some new results representing progress to date towards a general proof.

Biographical Note

Bruce Levin, Ph.D., is Professor and former Chair of the Department of Biostatistics at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. He has a long-standing interest in statistical methodology for clinical trials, public health, and the law. Using sequential statistical methods, he has published on innovative trial designs, e.g., designs that minimize ethical costs, designs that emphasize the selection paradigm rather than the significance-testing paradigm, and novel designs such as the comparative selection trial, which combines features of both paradigms. Dr. Levin enjoys putting theory into practice and has served as the senior statistical consultant on several multicenter randomized clinical trials in the field of stroke neurology and cardiology, including the WARCEF trial funded by NINDS (Warfarin versus Aspirin in Reduced Cardiac Ejection Fraction), the WARSS trial (Warfarin versus Aspirin in Recurrent Stroke Study), the GAIN Americas trial, and the CABG Patch trial. He has also served for the last 15 years as the Director of the Statistics, Epidemiology, and Data Management (SED) Core of the HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies. Dr. Levin is a Fellow of the American Statistical Association. He co-authored the third edition of Statistical Methods for Rates and Proportions with Myunghee Cho Paik and the late Joseph L. Fleiss. Dr. Levin served for ten years as Consulting Statistical Editor for the American Journal of Public Health. He has also served as an expert statistical witness in many court cases, and is co-author with Michael O. Finkelstein of Statistics for Lawyers, now in its second edition.

Date: Thursday, January 19, 2012
Time: 4:00 - 5:00 P.M.
Location: Mailman School of Public Health
Department of Biostatistics
722 West 168th Street
Hess Commons
New York, New York


Informal tea at 3:40 P.M.

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