Huffing and puffing

I kind of feel like Mark in Peep Show, when he pretended he was fit and able to do jogging with Big Suze and after only a minute or so he ends up nearly vomiting…

BUT: the rush in the past few weeks has been worth it, I think. First I did my talk at O’Bayes — I showed some of the work on VoI and while preparing my slides spending waaay too much time photoshopping Rev Bayes into a St Patrick’s crowd:

(as it happens, the joke was probably less obvious than I originally thought, but some people came up to me afterwards to say they got it then and chuckled…). The conference looked very good — although I could only be there for the day so it was, well, in keeping with the rest of the month so far, a bit rushed.

Then we had our workshop on R for trial and model-based cost-effectiveness analysis, which I think went really well. We had almost 100 people participating — and I don’t just mean participating as “being there”… There was a lot of discussion, questions, comments and even after the event, a few people sent us emails with ideas for how we should go forward, which I think is brilliant. Throughout the day, we had very good talks — and the slides are (almost) all available at the workshop page. We’ll definitely do it again next year — I think we’ll have to start planning soon!

Finally, earlier this week, I went to beautiful Leuven for the ICBS conference. Together with Oriana we’ve organised a session on “Managing uncertainty in statistical analysis of health economics data”. The conference is not necessarily the place where most of the audience is familiar (or perhaps interested) in the application of statistical methods to economic evaluation — but the turnout was amazing:

(the room was massive — but I counted at least 75 people!). Once again, I wasn’t able to spare much time, so I was again touch-and-run and only went to Leuven for the day. My train was a t 6.37, so I had to leave at stupid o’clock to get it. That, together with the curious incidents at coffee machines (there were quite a few around the campus. And the coffee also looked rather good. But they only worked with credit cards, which apparently had to be linked to a Belgian bank — or at least not to a British one. I suppose that’s Brexit retribution…), this meant I wasn’t super sharp through the day. In fact, while I set out to be early in the room before the session started, I managed to actually be late — because I went to the wrong room… But, like I said, the session went well and the talks by Maiween Al, Andreas Karabis and Neil Hawkins were very interesting and varied. I hope I’ll be able to link to their talks soon!

But also, in the main conference hall, Wiley had their booth, in which I found a book by a (couple of) very familiar author(s)… [Hint: top-left corner]:

Speaking of, I always find hilarious the reaction I get from people I don’t know very well, when while speaking (say at a conference), it transpires that Marta and I are more than just part time lovers (I think I’m listening to too much radio, lately)… Somebody once told me that finding that out was their version of “celebrity spotting”…

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