Historical Records of Australian Science Historical Records of Australian Science Society
The history of science, pure and applied, in Australia, New Zealand and the southwest Pacific

Peter Gavin Hall 1951–2016

John Robinson A C and Alan H. Welsh B
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A School of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia.

B Mathematical Sciences Institute, Australian National University, John Dedman Building 27, Union Lane, Canberra, ACT2601, Australia.

C Corresponding author. Email: john.robinson@sydney.edu.au

Historical Records of Australian Science 28(2) 171-182 https://doi.org/10.1071/HR17009
Published: 31 August 2017


Peter Hall, in the forty years of his research career, produced work in both probability and statistics, whose breadth and depth must be regarded as phenomenal. He displayed extraordinary technical skills together with remarkable intuition in developing and applying multifaceted mathematical approaches in the whole of his work. The impact of this wide-ranging use of powerful mathematical methods has had a profound effect on much of modern mathematical statistics. After completing his DPhil at Oxford, he remained in Australia for almost all his career although he was renowned as one of the major international figures in probability and statistics. Peter was a mentor to a large group of post-graduate students and post-doctoral colleagues giving encouragement and guidance and he attracted many research visitors contributing greatly to the whole of Australian statistical research. Remarkably, given his immense research output, he took a significant role in both editorial duties in major international journals and in advocacy for mathematics and statistics in Australia. Peter was a man of great charm whose modest demeanour belied his staggering abilities. His loss to mathematics and statistics is great, but is matched by the personal loss to us and to his many friends.

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