Chair holder | David Wales


David Wales (University of Cambridge)


Short bio

David Wales is Professor of Chemical Physics in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Cambridge. His research interests include: computational physics, quantum theory, chemistry, biological, chemistry, materials, chemistry, physical, chemistry, theoretical, molecular medicine, applied mathematics and theoretical physics. He was awarded the Meldola Medal and Prize in 1992 by the Royal Society of Chemistry and the Tilden Prize in 2015. In 2020, he received a Humboltd Research Prize from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.


Research topic | Solution landscapes for Machine Learning

We explore machine learning landscapes in the cost function parameter space, which isanalogous to the potential energy surface of a molecule as a function of atomic coordinates. Ongoing advances in methodology developed in chemical physics, can therefore be immediately applied to ML solution landscapes.

Our objectives are to use these tools to design improved predictions, and apply them to problems in molecular science and health care. In particular, we seek improved machine learning tools for clinician diagnostic support, to provide earlier detection of the deteriorating (and improving) patient. Specific applications include prediction of readmission to intensive care, which represent a failure in down-transfer to the ward, and are often associated with patient mortality.