Researcher’s Profile

Simon Tavaré, PhD, FRS

Director, Herbert and Florence Irving Institute for Cancer Dynamics

Dr. Tavaré obtained his PhD in Probability and Statistics in 1979 from the University of Sheffield, and began his research career in the USA, at the University of Utah and with Sam Karlin in Stanford. He subsequently held positions in Statistics at Colorado State University, Mathematics at the University of Utah and Mathematics and Biology at the University of Southern California. He held the Kawamoto Chair in Biological Sciences at USC from 1998 to 2014. His research at USC included work in computational statistics, bioinformatics, population genetics, probabilistic combinatorics and inference for stochastic processes.

In 2003, Dr. Tavaré moved to the University of Cambridge, as professor of cancer research in the Department of Oncology, a group leader in Cancer Research UK’s Cambridge Research Institute from 2006, and a professor in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, where he was director of the Wellcome Trust PhD program in Mathematical Genomics and Medicine, and director of its MPhil in computational biology.

From February 2013 to January 2018, he was director of the (renamed) Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute, which had become a department of the University of Cambridge in January 2013. His research focused on statistical bioinformatics and computational biology, particularly evolutionary approaches to understanding cancer biology. In 2009,

At Columbia, as Irving Professor of Cancer Research, he will continue his work on cancer dynamics, statistical bioinformatics, and methods for understanding the three-dimensional structure of solid tumors at single cell resolution, this last through membership of the CRUK Grand Challenge IMAXT project coordinated from Cambridge.