Kira Williams, PhD



Hello! My name is Kira Williams (she/they). I'm trans, genderqueer and a critical human geographer who is a data scientist at Wilfrid Laurier University. My research focuses on international migration, borders, political geography, analytical methodology and statistics. I graduated from my PhD in October 2018, with a thesis studying the use of semi-secret military operations to control the movement of migration by boat in the Central Mediterranean Sea. My advisor was Dr. Alison Mountz .

I'm a data scientist, policy analyst and statistician specialising in statistical programming, mathematical statistics and social science. I program and teach statistics in R, Python, SQL, J and Stata languages. I also work with geographical information systems (GIS) through R and ArcGIS. I have experience with all kinds of statistical software and Unix-like systems. I was formally trained in mathematical statistics, econometrics and spatial analysis.

I specialise in and teach statistics, data science and public policy analysis to graduate students. In my policy-related research, I've had the privilege of working with many partners, such as the World Bank, OECD, International Organization for Migration, UN Women, UNODC, HEQCO, Pierre Elliot Trudeau Foundation, as well as the Canadian federal and Ontario provincial governments. As a statistician, I employ data-driven and evidence-based methods in policymaking. Through this work, I've also had experience managing teams of researchers.

As a programmer, I specialise in designing and implementing my own algorithms using a language's primitives. In R, for instance, I am adept at being able to create novel solutions to difficult problems by writing unique code from the base package. This makes me well-suited for approaching complex or under-studied tasks.

I will be seeking employment in the future as an assistant professor, statistician, data scientist or policy analyst. On this website, you'll be able to find my curriculum vitae, as well as examples of my work. There is also a copy of my current résumé for non-academic positions. I also include samples of my musical compositions and poetry. Enjoy!

I have recently taught courses on the following subjects: GIS, statistical inference in policy science using R, public policy impact evaluation, geographies of violence and methodology in studying global governance. In the past, I've typically taught courses related to statistics, especially spatial analysis. I'm currently working on my functional programming in the J language for future research.

Some links to connect with me on social media:

Dr. Kira Williams at her doctoral dissertation defense, 6 September 2018.