Oxford NCRM Summer School:

An introduction to combining social science and molecular genetic research

 


Date: June 26-30, 2017 | Location: Nuffield College, Oxford, UK

Oxford NCRM Summer School:

An introduction to combining social science and molecular genetic research

 


Date: June 26-30, 2017 | Location: Nuffield College, Oxford, UK

Oxford NCRM Summer School:

An introduction to combining social science and molecular genetic research

The Oxford NCRM (National Centre for Research Methods) Summer School: An introduction to combining social science and molecular genetic research offer graduate students, early career researchers and researchers interested in entering this topic a unique introductory course.

The programme consists of morning lectures by top scholars in the emerging field of ‘sociogenomics’, including Dalton Conley (Princeton), Ben Domingue (Stanford), Melinda Mills (Oxford), David Steinsaltz (Oxford), Meena Kumari (Essex), Cecilia Lindgren (Oxford). Afternoon lectures consist of hands-on computer lab training by Oxford-based researchers Nicola Barban, Felix Tropf, Stine Møllegaard, Maria Christodoulou, Melissa Smart (Essex), and Yanchun Bao (Essex).

The course will equip students with a unique insight into the emerging topic of sociogenomics and the most cutting-edge methodological techniques in this area of research. The focus will be on understanding the key substantive research questions in this area, an overview of UK data that is increasingly available, hands-on computer lesson of how to work with genetic data, and an introduction into the current methodological techniques used in the field.

Working with world-class researchers and instructors, you will have the opportunity to gain new skills in this emerging field.

Instructor Profiles

Oxford NCRM instructors are highly experienced scholars from Oxford, Princeton, Stanford and Essex

Course Outline

Information on the course timetable and topics covered

Apply Now

Deadline for applications is April 6th, 2017

Meet the Instructors:

Dalton Conley

Henry Putnam University Professor of Sociology at Princeton University

Dalton Conley

Dalton Conley is the Henry Putnam University Professor of Sociology at Princeton University

His current work applies econometric methods for causal inference–namely, a natural experiment framework–to genome-wide data available in social surveys to model gene-by-environment interaction effects. Examples in this vein include deploying the Vietnam draft lottery, twin differences in birth weight, exogenous job loss (such as plant closure), and sibling differences in genotype (polygenic scores) to questions of health, development and socioeconomic attainment across the life course. He is also interested in mapping the genetic architecture of phenotypic plasticity, interrogating the assumptions underlying models for heritability, and characterizing social and genetic sorting as distinct processes.

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Ben Domingue

Assistant Professor, Stanford Graduate School of Education, Stanford University

Ben Domingue

Ben Domingue is Assistant Professor, Stanford Graduate School of Education, Stanford University

Ben Domingue has two areas of active research. The first focuses on statewide standardized test scores and their uses, particularly how test scores are used in statistical models that evaluate the effectiveness of teachers and schools. On a technical level, he also is interested in the extent to which test scores and the data from which they are drawn demonstrate certain desirable properties. The second area of research focuses on the integration of genetic data into social science research. In particular, he is interested in understanding the genetic architecture of educational attainment and the way in which schools can and do moderate the association between genes and educational attainment.

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Melinda Mills

Melinda Mills is Nuffield Professor of Sociology at the University of Oxford and Nuffield College and Editor-in-Chief of the European Sociological Review

Melinda Mills

Melinda Mills is Nuffield Professor of Sociology at the University of Oxford and Nuffield College and Editor-in-Chief of the European Sociological Review

She is currently working on the area of combining a social science and molecular genetic approach to the study of behavioural outcomes, with a focus on human fertility, socioeconomic differentials and the labour market. She is the PI of the ERC SOCIOGENOME project and the ESRC NCRM SOCGEN project. Her work includes a genome-wide association study of human reproductive behaviour, genes, environment and educational attainment, genetic overlap in traits, assortative mating on the internet, the impact of labour market uncertainty and schedules. She recently published books on non-standard work schedules and survival and event history analysis in R.

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Meena Kumari

Professor of Biological and Social Epidemiology at ISER, University of Essex

Meena Kumari

Meena Kumari is Professor of Biological and Social Epidemiology at ISER, University of Essex

Her research interests include: the biological pathways by which the social environment and health are linked over the lifecourse and the use of genetic epidemiology to inform understanding of the causal influence of environmentally modifiable risk factors. She is a leading expert in biomarkers and genetics, and has worked to apply insights from these areas to better understand ageing, cardiovascular disease, and health inequalities using the Whitehall II cohort study of British civil servants and the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing. She continues to lead research on the social-biological interface and genetic epidemiology as an investigator for Understanding Society.

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Cecilia Lindgren

Associate Professor and Senior Group Leader at the Big Data Institute, Nuffield Department of Medicine

Cecilia Lindgren

Cecilia Lindgren is Associate Professor and Senior Group Leader at the Big Data Institute, Nuffield Department of Medicine

Her research seeks to advance understanding of the mechanisms involved in obesity and the regulation of differential central fat accumulation in the belief that an appreciation of these mechanisms will complement advances in understanding of overall energy balance. By applying a range of genetic and genomic approaches, she aims to identify genetic variants influencing regional fat distribution, and to illuminate some of the biological pathways involved. Recent publications examine sexual dimorphism in genetic loci linked to body fat distribution, BMI, body shape, and analyses on trans-ethnic and trans-ancestry studies.

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David Steinsaltz

Associate Professor in the Department of Statistics, University of Oxford, and Tutor in Statistics at Worcester College

David Steinsaltz

David Steinsaltz is Associate Professor in the Department of Statistics, University of Oxford, and Tutor in Statistics at Worcester College

His interests are in stochastic processes, biodemography, mathematical biology, random dynamical systems, survival analysis, Bayesian statistics. His work forms part of a loosely organised international collaborative effort, including laboratory biologists, field biologists, demographers, economists, statisticians, mathematicians, working to bring modern mathematical and statistical technology to bear on the major theoretical problems of ageing: Why do organisms senesce (i.e., deteriorate in physiological function as they age)? Why do some organisms apparently not senesce? Why do organisms show the patterns of age-related change that they do, and how is this linked to other characteristics of their life course?

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Nicola Barban

Nuffield Research Fellow and a Senior Research Associate in the Department of Sociology, University of Oxford

Nicola Barban

Nicola Barban is a Nuffield Research fellow and a Senior Research Associate in the Department of Sociology, University of Oxford

He works as a member of Mills’ ERC Consolidator Grant project “SOCIOGENOME: Unravelling the genetic influences of reproductive behaviour and gene-environment interaction” and co-PI of the NCRM SOCGEN project. His research interests include sociogenetics, life course analysis, gene-environment interactions in fertility research, immigrant assimilation, social interactions and fertility, and statistical methods for demographic research.

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Felix Tropf

Felix Tropf is Postdoctoral Research Fellow in sociogenomics at Nuffield College and the Department of Sociology, University of Oxford

Felix Tropf

Felix Tropf is Postdoctoral Research Fellow in sociogenomics at Nuffield College and the Department of Sociology, University of Oxford

He works as a member of Mills’ ERC Consolidator Grant project “SOCIOGENOME: Unravelling the genetic influences of reproductive behaviour and gene-environment interaction” and co-PI of the NCRM SOCGEN project. For his Master thesis on sex-differences in elderly care, the German Society for Demography (DGD) honoured him with the Allianz-Newcomer award 2012. From 2011 to 2015, he was appointed as doctoral researcher and lecturer at the ICS Graduate School, University of Groningen.

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Stine Møllegaard

Postdoctoral Research Fellow in sociogenomics at Nuffield College and the Department of Sociology, University of Oxford

Stine Møllegaard

Stine Møllegaard is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in sociogenomics at Nuffield College and the Department of Sociology, University of Oxford since June 2016

She is working as part of the ESRC NCRM SOCGEN project on the integration of genetic data into social sciences funded from the National Centre for Research Methods. Her research focuses on the role of nature and nurture in social science research, mechanisms generating inequality in educational outcomes, and intergenerational transmission in the family. In her Phd work she investigated the role of cultural capital and behavioral problems in educational inequality, as well as multigenerational effects of family resources, and the effects of prenatal nurture.

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Maria Christodoulou

Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Department of Statistics, University of Oxford

Maria Christodoulou

Maria Christodoulou is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Department of Statistics, University of Oxford

She is working as part of the ESRC NCRM SOCGEN project on the integration of genetic data into social sciences funded from the National Centre for Research Methods. Her current research focuses on the development of models for survival analysis of genetic data. Prior to this she completed her PhD in Evolutionary Biology at the University of Reading where she focused on combining morphometrics with machine learning to aid botanical identification. Her research interests include mathematical biology, machine learning, taxonomy and evolution, and botany.

Melissa Smart

Senior Research Officer (Genetics), Institute for Social and Economic Research, University of Essex

Melissa Smart

Melissa is a Senior Research Officer in Genetics at the Institute for Social and Economic Research, University of Essex

She has a Bsc in Biology and MSc in Cancer Genetics and PhD in Biomedical Genetics. She is a Senior Research Officer in Genetics at ISER, interested in complex human disease and the biological pathways by which disease can develop over the life course. She is also interested in the interplay with genetics and epigenetic with the environment.

Yanchun Bao

Senior Research Officer, Institute for Social and Economic Research, University of Essex

Yanchun Bao

Yanchun Bao is a Senior Research Officer at the Institute for Social and Economic Research, University of Essex

She is working on the Understanding Society Biomarker Project at ISER. Her interests are mendelian randomisation, causal, several and longitudinal analysis, Hidden Markov Modelling and covariance modelling.

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Scholarships

Applicants are eligible for NCRM Training Bursaries worth to £500 each.

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Information about Oxford

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