JSM 2009 impressions [day 5]
Last days of conferences are often low-key… This is the case for JSM 2009. The final sessions were almost empty, as most of the 6400 attendees had already left D.C. There were two Bayesian invited sessions this morning on Bayesian model choice. Jim Berger gave a talk about model multiplicity adjustment in subgroup tests that was quite in-line with my own views on the choice of the weights in model comparison, while Robert Kohn’s talk was very much related to mine, although he chose to focus on Chib’s approach to evidence/marginal likelihood approximation.
So, in conclusion of a long and intense meeting, I must acknowledge I enjoyed it. Especially when considering my earlier misgivings. Not only because of the gratifying third place in the Gertrude Cox Scholarship 5k race, but more seriously for having only attended interesting and thought-challenging sessions over the five days. (I came prepared for the frustration of having to face competing sessions by having composed my sequence of sessions in advance.) Maybe by almost exclusively sticking to invited sessions with 30mn talks and special lectures, I also avoided the feeling of wasting my time in too short and incomprehensible talks. Even though I missed some old friends, I met with many and, thanks to filling my agenda prior to the meeting, I mostly avoided the “dinner nightmare” where the party grows to the point of an impossibility theorem (of catering to everyone’s taste and of finding a place accommodating that size!). Thanks to the location in a gigantic conference center, the crowd management was fairly efficient and avoided the suffocation feeling—and hopefully swine flu contamination!—that I had in earlier meetings and that left me exhausted. At this stage, I am even considering attending JSM 2010 in beautiful Vancouver!