Susan Murphy

Kempner Associate Faculty
Kempner Faculty Steering Committee
Mallinckrodt Professor of Statistics and of Computer Science

Preferred Pronouns:



Contact Information

Subjects I Teach:

  • Causal Inference
  • Reinforcement Learning

Areas I Research:


The Statistical Reinforcement Learning Lab’s work concerns the development of data analytic algorithms and methods for informing sequential decision making in health. In particular for (1) constructing individualized sequences of treatments (a.k.a., adaptive interventions) for use in informing clinical decision making, and (2) constructing real time individualized sequences of treatments (a.k.a Just-in-Time Adaptive Interventions) delivered by smart devices. The Lab is engaged in a number of clinical trials that use its real-time algorithms to learn and optimize the delivery of digital interventions. For her work on trial designs and analytics, Dr. Murphy was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in 2013. In 2014, she was elected a member of the National Academy of Medicine; and in 2016, she was elected a member of the National Academy of Sciences of the US National Academies.

The Lab’s research is funded by National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, National Cancer Institute and by National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering. The Lab works with researchers at d3Lab (ISR) and mDOT: mHealth Center for Discovery, Optimization & Translation of Temporally-Precise Interventions on these topics.

Research Focus

Murphy’s current research focuses on reinforcement learning in health, and causal inference.