16 Feb 2024 09:00am to 05:00pm

Summer School 2024: Causal mediation analysis

Event Location
Ground floor conference rooms
553 St Kilda Road
Melbourne VIC 3004
Margarita Moreno Betancur
Margarita is co-lead of the Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics Unit (CEBU) at the MCRI and the University of Melbourne. Since completing her PhD in Biostatistics at Université Paris-Sud in 2014...
Ghazaleh Dashti
Ghazaleh completed her PhD in Epidemiology at the University of Melbourne in 2020. Her current research focuses on methods for handling missing data in the context of causal inference methods...
Marnie is a biostatistician at the Murdoch Children's Research Institute. She completed her PhD at The University of Melbourne in 2020, investigating the application of multilevel regression and poststratification for...
Topic: Evaluation and development of approaches for conducting sensitivity analyses within the multiple imputation framework.
Tong completed his PhD at the University of Auckland in 2022. His PhD research focused on the optimal sampling for regression models in two-phase health studies. His current research focuses...

Many health research questions concern the multiple pathways that are presumed to mediate a relationship between an exposure and an outcome. Very often, the translational intent of such research questions is to inform potential intervention targets. However, the usual causal mediation approaches do not consider this interventional intent and/or rely on assumptions that are either too stringent or not assessable in practice. Recently an alternative approach has emerged based on “interventional effects” that assess the impact of relevant interventions on one or multiple mediators and are identifiable under relaxed assumptions. This approach is gaining popularity in applications, making it timely to present this topic.

This course provides an overview of the conceptual issues surrounding causal mediation analysis. It then presents the interventional effects approach, using a recently proposed framework that defines these effects by mapping them to a “target trial” that evaluates interventions on one or several mediators. We describe how to define and emulate a target trial for mediation analysis and introduce an extended g-computation approach for estimating these effects.

Lectures and tutorials will ground understanding of the methods, whilst a hands-on computer practical (in R and Stata) will cover their practical implementation. Illustrations from real-world epidemiological studies are included throughout.

Prerequisites:  It is strongly recommended that participants have previously taken an introductory course on causal inference, such as a prior ViCBiostat causal inference workshop, and have familiarity with concepts and methods such as the target trial and g-computation. To do the computer practical, students must also have a sound working familiarity with Stata or R and have the corresponding software installed on their computer or laptop. A list of R packages required will be circulated with electronic copies of the course material beforehand.


This event will be held in person and online via Zoom. 

Registration is now open via: https://shop.monash.edu/vicbiostat-2024-summer-school.html


Registration prices



Prediction modelling


12&13 February

Advanced survival analysis


14&15 February

Causal mediation analysis


16 February

All three workshops


(10% discount)

Standard in-person






Student in-person






Standard online-only






Student online-only