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Rutgers Foundations of Probability Seminar continues!
New Book —
Game-Theoretic Foundations for Probability and Finance

by Glenn Shafer and Vladimir Vovk
Related Working Papers

Glenn Shafer has been a university educator for 50 years. He is still best known for his work in the 1970s and 1980s on the Dempster-Shafer theory, an alternative theory of probability that has been applied widely in engineering and artificial intelligence. There is a society devoted to the advancement of this theory, the Belief Functions and Applications Society, which has been holding international conferences since 2010. Glenn is also known for his initiation, with Vladimir Vovk, of the game-theoretic framework for probability. Their first book on the topic was Probability and Finance: It's Only a Game! A new book on the topic, Game-Theoretic Foundations for Probability and Finance, appeared in May 2019 (Wiley, Hoboken, NJ). Many related working papers are posted at

Glenn has also contributed to the history of probability and statistics, publishing more than twenty papers on the topic and translating many others from French. His most recent contribution in this area is the book The Splendors and Miseries of Martingales: Their History from the Casino to Mathematics, co-edited with Laurent Mazliak, which was published by Birkhäuser in 2022.

In 2009, Glenn was recognized for his scholarly work with an honorary doctorate in economics by the University of Economics, Prague. He has been a Guggenheim Fellow, a Fulbright Fellow, and a visiting professor in Paris and Berlin. In 2004, he received Rutgers’ most prestigious faculty award, the Gorenstein Award for Research and Service, and he is now a University Professor at Rutgers, teaching in several different departments. For more information on Glenn’s career and research, see the interview of Glenn in the June 2016 issue of, his 2016 intellectual autobiography, and the biography by his colleagues in the special volume (vol. 141) of the International Journal of Approximate Reasoning in honor of his 75th birthday.

Glenn was Dean of the Rutgers Business School – Newark and New Brunswick for four years, from the beginning of 2011 to the end of 2014. In this role, he raised the stature of the School by expanding support for faculty research and strengthened its connections with the business community, creating new endowed professorships and outreach centers for entrepreneurship and real estate, a new small business office for Middlesex County, and a new office of executive education. The School moved its New Brunswick operations into a striking new building at 100 Rockafeller Road in Piscataway, expanded its undergraduate programs on both campuses, launched new programs at the master's level in marketing research, supply chain management, financial analysis, and business analytics, and strengthened its mentoring programs for undergraduates, its career placement services at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, and its programs for serving all of New Jersey's students, including women and under-represented minorities. The School is now a leader within Rutgers in developing the private-public partnerships and community involvement championed by Rutgers President Robert Barchi and Rutgers University-Newark Chancellor Nancy Cantor. In 2010, Glenn explained his philosophy of education in a commencement address entitled "You are the face and future of opportunity."

Glenn spent his childhood on a farm near Caney, Kansas, earned an undergraduate degree in mathematics at Princeton, and served in the Peace Corps in Afghanistan before launching his academic career. He completed a doctorate in mathematical statistics at Princeton in 1973. Before joining the Rutgers Business School in 1992, he taught at Princeton and the University of Kansas. Since 2002, Glenn and his wife Nell Painter, artist and distinguished professor emerita of history at Princeton University, live in East Orange, New Jersey. Nell's most recent books are The History of White People, Old in Art School, and I Just Keep Talking.

  Glenn Shafer and Arthur Dempster at Quimper, April 2010
  Glenn Shafer and Vladmire Vovk at Vilnius, July 2018
  Glenn Shafer and Kei Takeuchi at Egham, June 2010
  Dean Glenn Shafer at the Rutgers University-Newark Commencement, May 2014
  Glenn Shafer, Herman Chernoff, Don Rubin, Arthur Dempster at Cambridge, MA, July 2016


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Glenn Shafer at Fort Lupton, Colorado, in summer 1968
Glenn at Fort Lupton, Colorado, in summer 1968, in language training for service in the Peace Corps in Afghanistan. Photograph by William Allen.

Research on Game-Theoretic
Probability and Finance

Research on Causality
Research on Dempster-
Shafer Theory of Evidence

Research on Conformal

Honorary doctorate by the University of Economics, Prague

spacer Glenn Shafer and his grandson William, May 2010
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spacer Glenn Shafer with son Rick and granddaughter Lilly, July 2014
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spacer Glenn Shafer with grandson Arlo, April 2016
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spacer Glenn Shafer reading Testing by Betting

Glenn Shafer "reading"
"Testing by Betting" to the
Royal Statistical Society September 2020.
Paper (pre-print), slides, video.

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This page last revised March 5, 2024

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