Extracting distribution parameters from multiple uncertain observations with selection biases

Ilya Mandel, Will M. Farr, Jonathan R. Gair

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23 Citations (Scopus)


We derive a Bayesian framework for incorporating selection effects into population
analyses. We allow for both measurement uncertainty in individual measurements
and, crucially, for selection biases on the population of measurements, and show how to extract the parameters of the underlying distribution based on a set of observations sampled from this distribution. We illustrate the performance of this framework with an example from gravitational-wave astrophysics, demonstrating that the mass ratio distribution of merging compact-object binaries can be extracted from Malmquist-biased observations with substantial measurement uncertainty.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1086-1093
Number of pages8
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019


  • gravitational waves
  • stars: neutron
  • methods: data analysis

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