Professor Bruce Spencer Weir

Ph.D. 1968. Statistics and Genetics. North Carolina State University.B.Sc(HONS). 1965. Mathematics. University of Canterbury.

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Honorary Professor


I am currently Professor of Biostatistics and Director of the Institute for Statistical Genetics at the University of Washington in Seattle, Washington. My undergraduate education was in Mathematics at the University of Canterbury, and my PhD was in Statistics and Genetics at North Carolina State University. I have held Visiting appointments at the University of Edinburgh, the University of Oxford, the University of Sao Paulo in Brazil and the University of Lausanne in Switzerland.

Research | Current

I am currently working on the characterization of genetic matching between indivduals and between populations to assist in studies of the genetic basis of human disease.

Teaching | Current

I teach courses in Statistical Genetics and Forensic Genetics at the University of Washington.

Postgraduate supervision

I have supervised 35 PhD students and 19 Postdoctoral Fellows.


Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1998; Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand, 1998; Fellow of the American Statistical Association, 1999; Fellow of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, 2008; Fellow of the Royal Society of London, 2021.

Areas of expertise

Population and quantitative genetics theory. Development and application of methods in statistical genetics for human and natural populations. Prediction and characterization of associations of alleles within and between individuals or populations, with applications to estimation of inbreeding, relatedness and population structure. Associations between alleles at different loci and detection of association between traits and genetic markers. The use of genetic profiles in forensic science, with emphasis on allelic associations from relatedness and population structure, and dependencies of match probabilities among loci.

Committees/Professional groups/Services

I am Chair of the DNA Subcommittee of the New York State Commission on Forensic Science.

Contact details

Primary office location

SCIENCE CENTRE 303 - Bldg 303
Level 3, Room 305
New Zealand