People This week BBC Four broadcast Climate Change by Numbers in which three mathematicians - Dr Hannah Fry, Prof Norman Fenton and Prof David Spiegelhalter utilised a set of numbers each to explain why climate change should be the most pressing issue on the planet Earth we should all be dealing with and why we should believe the 97% of climate scientists who believe it to be due to human activity. The whole thing is available to watch here for the next two weeks, assuming it isn't repeated in which case it'll be a bit longer.
As her biography page at UCL explains, Dr. Fry, "is a lecturer in the mathematics of cities at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA). She was trained as a mathematician with a first degree in mathematics and theoretical physics, followed by a PhD in fluid dynamics. After a brief period working in aerodynamics, she returned to UCL to take up a post-doctoral position researching a relatively new area of science - social and economic complex systems. This led to her appointment as a lecturer in the field in October 2012."
Here she is herself with a richer explanation of her interests from a German science conference's channel:
Which is fascinating and for the past few years she's appeared at a range of conferences and courses demonstrating this approach to data and I've gathered as many of these talks as I can find. There's some repetition in places, but she's excellent at finding new ways of presenting similar data for different ends.
Let's begin with Fry's own channel where there are three pieces, two of which are provided for her students and (just slightly) above entry level:
Can maths predict a riot
"This video came about as a splinter project of some work I've been doing at UCL, trying to understand the 2011 London riots from a mathematical perspective. "
Linear relationships, power laws and exponentials
Logs and exps
The general UCLBASc channel has this piece explaining the course in greater detail:
But perhaps she's best known publicly for this brilliant TED Talks (the first also available as an eBook and which as Fry's media page demonstrates gained some interest around Valentine's Day this year):
The mathematics of love
"Finding the right mate is no cakewalk — but is it even mathematically likely? In a charming talk, mathematician Hannah Fry shows patterns in how we look for love, and gives her top three tips (verified by math!) for finding that special someone."
Is life really that complex?
"Hannah Fry trained as a mathematician, and completed her PhD in fluid dynamics in early 2011. After a brief period working as an aerodynamicist in the motorsport industry, she came back to UCL to work on a major interdisciplinary project in complexity science. The project spans several departments, including Mathematics and the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, and focuses on understanding global social systems -- such as Trade, Migration and Security. Hannah's research interests revolve around creating new mathematical techniques to study these systems, with recent work including studies of the London Riots and Consumer Behaviour."
In 2014 she was invited to speak at Ada Lovelace Day 2014:
Can Maths Predict the Future?
"Hannah Fry shows how maths can explain real world events. From crimes to relationships, patterns in numbers such as Benford's law on the prevalence of numbers starting with 1', help us predict the future."
She extemporised on riot prediction theory at re:publica 2014 across a whole hour:
I predict a riot!
Synopsis: "It happens again and again: peaceful protests turn violent, paving stones become missiles, the police respond with truncheons, tear gas and water cannons. People are hurt, sometimes fatally. But why were certain areas and neighbourhoods affected by the violence, while others remained completely peaceful? Why does social unrest start in the first place? How does it spread?"
She's also a regular on the Numberphile channel:
And the BBC's Britlab:
She's also presented a Radio 4 documentary, Can Maths Combat Terrorism?
For more on Dr Hannah Fry, visit her website.