Dr. Liberty Vittert

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University of Glasgow

School of Mathematics and Statistics, Ph.D., 2015. Dissertation: Facial Shape Analysis. A novel method of shape analysis using inherent surface curvature and smoothing methods.

Le Cordon Bleu Paris

Diplome de Patisserie et Cuisine de Base, 2011

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

BSc, 2010. Mathematics and a Concentration in Political Science

Professional Appointments


Olin Business School, Washington University in St. Louis (May 2019 – )

Professor of the Practice of Data Science

Visiting Professor

Department of Statistics, Harvard University (2019-2020)

Visiting Assistant Professor

Department of Mathematics and Statistics, Washington University in St. Louis (2018 – present )

One year appointment as a Visiting Assistant Professor, teaching Introductory Mathematics and Statistics for non-majors and continuing research with Smile Train project.

Associate Editor

Harvard Data Science Review, Harvard (2018 – present )

Data science is an emerging discipline that draws upon knowledge in statistical methodology and computer science to create impactful predictions and insights for a wide range of traditional scholarly fields. Founded in 2018, the Harvard Data Science Review will be the first of its kind, combining a scholarly journal, popular magazine, and platform for data science education.

Faculty Scholar

Institute of Public Health, Washington University in St. Louis (2018 – present )

The Institute of Public Health improves, amplifies, and supports public health efforts around the world, bringing faculty, researchers, practitioners, staff and students from diverse disciplines together to share ideas, form partnerships and create innovative solutions to today’s most pressing public health challenges through targeted forums, ventures, and opportunities to stimulate new approaches aimed at improving public health.

Mitchell Lecturer (Assistant Professor)

School of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Glasgow (2015 – present)

During my PhD, I developed a novel method of facial shape analysis by using intrinsic surface information (curvature) to create a curve-finding algorithm along a manifold (3d facial surfaces as an application). However, this method still relies on the initial starting anatomical landmarks of a face or surface, which are manually marked. My current research consists of a Bayesian approach to automatic landmarking with a further aim to create a fully Bayesian approach to the analysis of manifolds in general.


Visiting Scholar – Columbia University in New York City (Spring 2017)

Principal’s Early Career Mobility Scheme

Having won funding from the University of Glasgow under the Principal’s Early Career Mobility Scheme, I will work this spring under the sponsorship of Steve Coll, the Dean of the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University. This project will begin the research and initial stages of writing a non-fiction book with the aim to bring sophisticated, statistical shape methods to a general audience. The work will move chapter by chapter through different human traits and syndromes discussing whether any predilection can be initially dictated by facial shape. For example, Down’s Syndrome is clearly indicated by facial shape; however, mental illness, genius or criminality is a more questionable discussion with wide-ranging social implications.


Graduate Level

  • PhD: Co-supervisor student in Bayesian shape analysis (2016 – present)
  • MSc Supervisor, student in Analysis of 3D Camera Systems (2018)
  • MSc Supervisor, student in shape analysis of 3D and 2D assessment of surgical outcomes (2018)
  • MSc Supervisor, student in Shape Analysis of 3D and 2D Assessment of Surgical Outcomes (2018)
  • MSc Supervisor, student in Shape Analysis of Severity Measures of Reconstructive Surgery (2018)
  • MSc Supervisor, student in shape analysis of ethnicity (2016)
  • MSc Co-supervisor, student in warping shape analysis (2016)
  • MSc Co-supervisor, student in Linear Discriminant analysis of shape (2015-2016)
  • MSc Co-supervisor, student in spatial smoothing of river networks (2015-2016)

Undergraduate Level, Lectured Courses



Google Scholar Liberty Vittert 

In preparation:

  • Adrian Bowman, Liberty Vittert, Stanislav Katina. Face3D. R Cran package.
  • Stanislav Katina, Adrian Bowman, Liberty Vittert. Shape Visualisation. JCGS.
  • Liberty Vittert, Adrian Bowman, Ashraf Ayoub, Anas Almukhtar. 3-dimensional statistical modelling approach to the post-operative reprecussions of orthodontic bracket intervention.
  • Liberty Vittert, Adrian Bowman, Vincent Macaulay. A Bayesian approach to a 3-dimensional Automatic Landmarking and Curves Identification Process.
  • Liberty Vittert, Adrian Bowman. A Longitudinal view of Children’s growth over 18 years.
  • Liberty Vittert, Colby Dolly, A.J. Soll. Measuring Racial Profiling.In preparation:


  • American Statistical Association Journal
  • Biomedical Statistics Journal

Grant Awards

  • Co- PI for EPSRC IAA Grant (£30,000) for funding to continue the Smile Train pilot project in Brazil. Spring 2019
  • Co- PI Grant (£35,000) Smile Train Pilot Project, Varanasi India, Spring 2018.
  • Knowledge Exchange Fund Award, (9,900£ + £100,000 in contributed funds), 2017.
    • Producing a pilot television show called “Lies About Alcohol”


Selected Invited Talks and Public Speaking Engagements

  •  Invited Speaker, European Research Consortium of Informatics and Mathematics, “Data Ethics” London, UK, December 2019
  •  Keynote Speaker, Women in Data Science Conference. Saint Louis November 2019
  • Invited Speaker, Joint Statistical Meetings 2019, “Communicating to the Masses: Sharing Statistics and Data Science in a World of Sound Bites, Social Media, and Popular Press”, Denver, August 2019
  • Invited Session Organizer, World Statistics Conference, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, “Ethics of Data”, August 2019
  • International Air Transport Association (IATA), “Data, Aviation’s Most Strategic Opportunity and Greatest Threat” Keynote Speaker, Symposium, Greece June 2019
  • Speaker, Executive Education Seminar, Washington University in St. Louis “Calling BS: Finding the Truth and Lies in Data”, April 2019
  • National Museum of Scotland, First Minister of Scotland’s Annual Gala Keynote Speaker, April 2019
  • Case Lecture Invited Speaker, St. Louis University, April 2019
  • Seminar Speaker “The Future of Data”, Washington University in St, Louis, April 2019
  • Data Fest, Panelist Speaker, “The Future of Work, Industry 4.0” Edinburgh UK, March 2019
  •  Data Summit, Keynote Speaker, Edinburgh UK, March 2019
  • Stats + Stories Podcast Series, Featured Guest, February 2019
  •  Science on Tap, Washington University in St. Louis February 2019
  •  Emeritus Professors Speaking Series, Washington University in St. Louis, January 2019
  • CityWire, Keynote Speaker, New York City, Fall 2018.
  • Joint Statistical Meetings, Organizer Invited Session, “The future of statistics and the public: the good, the bad, and the ugly“, Vancouver, Canada. July 2018.
  • Joint Statistical Meetings, Chair Invited Session, “Statistical Ergonomics”, Vancouver, Canada. July 2018
  • DigitalDNA keynote conference speaker, Belfast, UK, ”Data: our greatest strategic threat and opportunity”, June 2018
  • TedX Glasgow ”Big Data and Cambridge Analytica, What’s the Real Story”, June 2018
  • Royal Statistical Society Young Researcher’s Symposium. ”Data: greatest strategic threat or opportunity?”. May 2018
  • Edinburgh Science Festival, Keynote Speaker, “Statistics and Public Opinion” April 2018.
    • “In the past 25 of years of being a part of the Edinburgh Science Festival, this was hands down the best talk I have ever been to. Truly Remarkable.” “Only time I have ever seen an audience clap in the middle of a talk”
  • Royal Statistical Society Webinar “The career value of effective communication skills” April 2018.
  • Harvard University, School of Psychology, April 2018 “Statistics and Opinion”.
  • UK National Audit Office (governmental audit body) 2018 “How to Communicate Dodgy Data”
  • Standard Life keynote speaker Technology and Change Conference, 2018 “The Lies of Money and Aging”
    • “Best session of the day!! Funny, engaging and I’m already keen to hear more. Brilliant! ” “I’d give you six stars if I could. Great presentation. Please come back every year!” “Wonderfully session. Really clicked things into place for me regarding data and stats.” “FANTASTIC – my favourite break-out of the day. – wow! This has changed my view on how I look at headlines and will also change my approach to which questions I should ask within work.”
  • CCA Global Keynote Speaker, 2018, CX Forum
  • CCA, “Customer Service Benchmarking”, March 2017
  • American Statistical Association, “Discussing strategies for communicating technical information to non-technical audiences” with Professor Regina Nuzzo, December 2017
  • Scottish Finance Director’s Forum, “Public Opinion: How to Capitalize and How to Fight Back”,  November 2017
  • CCA, “How to Spot the Lies of Public Opinion and Customer Service”, November 2017.
  • Low Moss Prison, “Why do Numbers Matter?”, November 2017
  • Esri UK, ArcGIS geographical mapping software, Keynote Speaker, 2017, “Statistics and Geography”
    • “Keynote was superb! ” “The key note speaker was brilliant.” “I loved Liberty’s closing speech, it was amazing.”
  • American Statistical Association, “Communicating Technical Information to Non-Technical Audiences”, 2017
    • “Outstanding job – educational and fun to hear about your creative processes for generating pieces for different audiences”
  • Advice Direct Scotland, (Citizen’s Advice) Evening Guest Speaker, “The Statistics of Public Opinion”, 2017
    • “Liberty enthralled and inspired the Advice Direct Scotland audience with her amazing ability to de-mystify statistics and challenge our thinking?
  • World Statistics Conference, Marrakech, Morocco, July 2017, “Telling statistical stories and teaching good data sense to the public.” Invited Session.
  • TedX Glasgow, “How to win the Lottery and Get Away with Murder”. June 2017
  • Royal Statistical Society/Glasgow Science Festival, The Power of Data. (Co-Speaker with Christl Donnelly) June 2017
  • JSM 2017 Panelist, Essential Skills for Communication Statistics. Topic-Contributed Session. Baltimore, MD. 2017
  • American City Business Journals Confidence Code. STEM Panel – The Science of Confidence – How Women and Girls can Master the Tech Revolution, Baltimore, MD. 2017
  • Washington University in St. Louis, Seminar February 2017, “Mapping the Human Face” 
  • European Research Consortium of Informatics and Mathematics 2016, Smoothing methods for complex data
  • P-Spline talks, Bilbao, Session 2016, P-Spline Smoothing with 2D Manifold Curvature
  • Masterclass Royal Society, 2016, How did OJ do it? Statistics in the Law.
  • Royal Statistical Society Science Festival, How to win the Lottery and Get Away with Murder, June 2016.
  • Masterclass Royal Society, 2015, Codes, Secrets, and Lies
  • First Tuesday Club, University of Glasgow, March 2016.
  • Face3D Consortium, 2015, University of Glasgow Facial Asymmetry and Reconstructive Surgery
  • Royal Statistical Society Conference, Manchester, UK 2016, Industry and Commerce: Compression, Compaction, and Visualisation, Statistics with a Human Face Visualisation

Upcoming Talks

  • World Statistics Congress.  Invited Paper Session at the 62nd ISI World Statistics Congress 2019 (ISI WSC 2019), 18 – 23 August 2019 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Ethics of Data Communication August 2019.
  • Joint Statistics Meetings (JSM). Invited Panel Session. Communicating to the Masses: Sharing Statistics and Data Science in a World of Sound Bites, Social Media, and Popular Press. August 2019.

Honors and Awards

Ambassador, Royal Statistical Society 2016

Elected Member of the International Statistical Institute

The ISI, established in 1885, is a non-profit, non-government organization that has had consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations since 1949. I recently became an Elected Member of the ISI, sponsored by the President-Elect, which occurs when recognized by the ISI Executive Committee as established in your career and having made significant contributions to the statistical profession.

TedX Glasgow 2017

Chosen to be a speaker for TedX Glasgow for the 2017 theme “Lead or Follow” at The SEC Armadillo in Glasgow to an audience of 1800 individuals showcasing the way data and numbers can be used to manipulate and misrepresent, as well as accidentally misinterpret information to the public and how to identify these inaccuracies in one’s every day life.

Representative from the International Statistical Institute to the American Statistical Association (2018)

BBC Expert Woman

One of twenty women chosen from hundreds of applicants to become a BBC Woman Expert Contributor for BBC Television and Radio Programs

Royal Pairing Scheme 2016

One of thirty scientists in the United Kingdom chosen to pair with a Parliamentarian at Westminster for Knowledge Exchange

STEM for Britain

A series of exhibits in the House of Commons at Westminster to encourage, support and promote Britain’s early-stage and early-career research scientists, engineers, technologists and mathematicians who are an essential part of continuing progress in and development of UK research and R&D

The Glasgow Crucible

The Glasgow Crucible is a leadership and development programme by selection of leading early-career researchers to enhance one’s research leadership, help build a culture of collaboration and knowledge exchange R&D

Judge, Statistic of The Year

A judging panel of 6 individuals chaired by the President of the Royal Statistical Society for a new initiative by the RSS, “Statistic of the Year”. In a similar vein to the Oxford English Dictionary’s ‘Word of the Year’, the RSS looked for statistics that were felt to capture the overall spirit of the year. R&D



  • Author and Consulting Editor, (Quarto Publishers) publishing January 2020.
  • Fox Business, columnist, weekly column (launching November 2019)
  • Fox News Channel, Weekly Opinion Editorial Data and Technology (2018 – present)

    • (October 2018) Number $1$ news trending story in the United States for over 24 hours.
  • Named top 40 coolest person in Scotland 2018. Herald Newspaper
  • Freelance Writer, appearing in Business Insider, Market Watch, International Business Times, US News, CBS News, Popular Science, Business Insider,  Seattle Post, San Francisco Chronicle, City Lab, St. Louis Post Dispatch, Houston Chronicle, NPR, etc., (2017 – present)
  • NPR Contributor for “Here and Now” (2018 – present)

  • Fox News Channel, opinion editorial contributor (2018 – present)
  • The Conversation, opinion contributor (2017 – present)
  • BBC Newsnight on-air and data visualization contributor 2018
  • BBC Statistical Expert, Resident Statistician for BBC Radio Scotland, recurring (2016 – present)
  • The Times, statistics contributor 2018
  • PBS Nova on-air contributor for statistics 2017
  • Channel 4 Statistical Expert, recurring shows i.e. Bizarre ER and Supershoppers
  • STV Scotland Tonight Statistical Expert, recurring (2016 – present) (Scottish Television Network, owned by ITV) Multiple contributor appearances for statistical questions/stories
  • “Research In Scotland” Pieces on STV2 (Scottish Television Network) –  showcasing my colleagues research in “What is Going on In Research In Scotland” pieces
  • Fox News Channel Guest 2014, 2015, New York
  • STV City election expert, full coverage for US Election 2016 and show special

Media (Non- Academic)

  • Host (BBC Best Cook in Britain Pilot), 2017
  • Host (Scottish Television Network (STV), owned by ITV) http://player.stv.tv/summary/liberty-american-cookbook
    • “Liberty’s Great American Cookbook”
    • TV show airing nationwide on STV utilising cooking from Le Cordon Bleu Paris and increasing media interest in statistics  (within my show I do a 1 minute section of Food for Thought of interesting statistics related to food)
  • Westender Magazine Contributor (2014 – present )
  • STV Glasgow/Edinburgh feature contributor (2014 – present)

A selection of clips below:


Service to Outside Institutions

Board Member USA for the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) (2015 – present)
Elected Member, International Statistical Institute (ISI) (2017 – present)
Member, American Statistical Association (ASA) (2016 – present)
Fellow and Ambassador, Royal Statistical Society (RSS) (2014 – present)

University Service

Outreach Committee, University of Glasgow (2015 – present)

Organizing outreach events for the School of Mathematics and Statistics from alumni events to opportunities for TV stories of current research

Communicating with Diverse Audiences University-Wide Working Group, University of Glasgow (2017 – present)

Working group within the University of Glasgow to address and develop methods for helping researchers communicate with diverse audiences through many different avenues.

Fundraising and Development work, University of Glasgow (2016 – present)

Aiding the university development office in fundraising events by discussing my own research, as well as hosting at public and private events.

Face3D Consortium collaborator (2012-2015)

The American Cook

Host (Scottish Television Network (STV), owned by ITV)

Liberty’s Great American Cookbook
TV show airing nationwide on STV utilising cooking from Le Cordon Bleu Paris


STV Glasgow/Edinburgh feature contributor (2014 – present)

Westender Magazine Contributor (2014 – present

photography by Gregor Reid

Thank you for viewing.

Full CV as of November 2019: Liberty Vittert CV