If you want to know what’s out there, you need to figure out what’s missing. And gravitational-wave astronomy is no exception. We are trying to infer how things like black holes and neutron stars behave in the Universe given a limited number of observations, which are somehow selected by our detectors. This is a very general problem which is common to a variety of fields of science. We provide a hopefully pedagogical introduction to population inference, deriving all the necessary statistics from the ground up. In other terms, here is what you always wanted to know about this population business everyone is talking about but never dared to ask.
This document is going to be part of a truly massive “Handbook of Gravitational Wave Astronomy” soon to be published by Springer (not really a handbook I would say, you probably need a truck to carry it around).
Salvatore Vitale, Davide Gerosa, Will M. Farr, Stephen R. Taylor.
Chapter of “Handbook of Gravitational Wave Astronomy”; Springer Singapore (2021).