About the author

Dr. Paula Moraga (https://www.paulamoraga.com/) is an Assistant Professor of Statistics at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). Previously, she held academic statistics positions at Lancaster University, Harvard School of Public Health, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Queensland University of Technology, and University of Bath. Dr. Moraga received her master’s degree in Biostatistics from Harvard University, and her Ph.D. in Mathematics from the University of Valencia.

Dr. Moraga has worked in statistical research for over a decade, with a strong focus on spatial epidemiology and modeling. She develops innovative statistical methods and open-source software for spatial data analysis and health surveillance, including methods to understand geographic and temporal patterns of diseases, assess their relationship with potential risk factors, identify clusters, measure inequalities, and quickly detect outbreaks. Her work has directly informed strategic policy in reducing the burden of diseases such as malaria and cancer in several countries.

Dr. Moraga has published extensively in leading journals, and serves as an Associate Editor of the Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A. She has been invited to deliver multiple training courses on spatial statistics and the development of interactive visualization applications using R. She has also created educational materials that impact learning on a large scale, including her book Geospatial Health Data: Modeling and Visualization with R-INLA and Shiny (Moraga 2019).

Dr. Moraga is the 2023 winner of the prestigious Letten Prize. Awarded by the Letten Foundation and the Young Academy of Norway, the prize recognizes young researchers’ contributions to health, development, environment, and equality across all aspects of human life. Dr. Moraga received the Letten Prize for her pioneering research in disease surveillance, and her significant contributions to the development of sustainable solutions for health and environment globally.