Wednesday 30 April 2014

New reviews of the book

Two journals have published excellent reviews of the book:

Journal of Statistical Theory and Practice, Vol. 8, March 2014 (full review: 
"By offering many attractive examples of Bayesian networks and by making use of software that allows one to play with the networks, readers will definitely get a feel for what can be done with Bayesian networks. … the power and also uniqueness of the book stem from the fact that it is essentially practice oriented, but with a clear aim of equipping the developer of Bayesian networks with a clear understanding of the underlying theory. Anyone involved in everyday decision making looking for a better foundation of what is now mainly based on intuition will learn something from the book." - Peter Lucas
International Journal of Performability Engineering, Vol.9, No. 3, July 2013, pp 551-553 (full review:
“… this book will be found very useful to practitioners, professors, students and anyone interested in understanding the application of Bayesian networks to risk assessment and decision analysis. Having many years experience in the area, I highly recommend the book.” --William E. Vesely (NASA),

Tuesday 1 April 2014

Douglas Hubbard posts excellent review of our book on

Douglas Hubbard - author of the brilliant (and top selling) books  How to Measure Anything, The Failure of Risk Management, and Pulse has written a terrific review of our book on This is the review verbatim:

The single most important book on Bayesian methods for decision analysts, March 19, 2014
By Douglas W. Hubbard (Glen Ellyn, IL) Amazon Verified Purchase
This review is from: Risk Assessment and Decision Analysis with Bayesian Networks (Hardcover)

Fenton and Neil have successfully made a "crossover" book that reaches broad audiences on a topic which is too often presented in a dry and esoteric manner. It is rich with illustrations, interesting examples, debunking of common fallacies, and a passionate philosophical position on Bayesian methods vs. the "frequentist" methods common in statistics.

This book is a comprehensive treatment of Bayesian methods but focuses on the particularly powerful models that can be made when conditional probabilities are presented in networks. The authors present a complete algebra of Bayesian networks using both formal expressions and simple diagrams so that almost any reader can be comfortable with the topic. This book does not assume that the reader has even basic training in probabilistic methods (it has a chapter on the basics of probability) but it also does not compromise on substantive content. The reader seeking basic explanations will not feel excluded and the reader seeking more advanced treatments will be satisfied as well.

This is exactly the sort of rigorous thinking that needs to displace the "softer" methods more common in risk assessment and decision analysis. It is presented as an entirely practical solution for managers, not an abstract, academic exercise. The "best practices" committees for PMBOK, ISO, Cobit and managers everywhere would be well advised to read this book before inventing yet another risk assessment or decision analysis method based on fluffy scores.

Doug Hubbard Author of How to Measure Anything (2007, 2010, 2014), The Failure of Risk Management (2009) and Pulse (2011)
The book now has 19 customer reviews on (15 of which are 5-star and 4 of which are 4-star) and 10 customer reviews on (7 of which are 5-star and 3 of which are 4-star).

Last week the book was number 1 top seller on amazon in the 'risk management' category.