ASA Headlines

Statisticians Help Iowa State Secure Forensic Science Center

As part of the national effort to strengthen the scientific basis for forensic evidence used in the criminal justice system, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has awarded Iowa State University up to $20 million over five years to establish a forensic science center of excellence. To be led by Alicia Carriquiry, the center is a partnership that includes prominent statisticians Stephen Fienberg, Karen Kafadar, Hal Stern—from Carnegie Mellon University; University of Virginia; and the University of California, Irvine, respectively. The center will focus on improving the statistical foundation for fingerprint, firearm, toolmark, dental, and other pattern evidence analyses and for computer, video, audio, and other digital evidence analyses. Read more from Iowa State and NIST.

Nussbaum Elected 112th ASA President

Barry D. Nussbaum, chief statistician at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), was elected the 112th president of the ASA by the membership. Nussbaum will serve a one-year term as president-elect on the ASA Board of Directors starting January 1, 2016, and will become ASA president January 1, 2017. ASA members also elected Katherine B. Ensor, Rice University professor of statistics, as an ASA vice president. She will begin her three-year term on the board January 1, 2016. Read more.

ASA Releases Pre-K-12 Instructor Education SET Report

The ASA has issued the Statistical Education of Teachers (SET) Report, which calls on mathematicians, statisticians, mathematics educators and statistics educators to collaborate in preparing pre-K-12 teachers to teach intellectually demanding statistics courses. SET was commissioned to clarify the recommendations for teacher statistical preparation in the Conference Board of the Mathematical Sciences' Mathematical Education of Teachers II report. The SET report, which is a resource stakeholders can use to guide statistics instruction preparation of current and future teachers, was developed by a team of statistics and education experts chaired by Christine Franklin, senior statistics lecturer at the University of Georgia. Read more.

Job Corps Participation Leads to Higher Wages

A statistical analysis of Job Corps data strongly suggests positive average effects on wages for individuals who participated in the job-training program. Specifically, the study found the average wage effect for program participants is between 5.7% and 13.9% four years after graduating from Job Corps. Additionally, the study found the wage effect was greater—between 7.7% and 17.5%—for non-Hispanics. Results of the analysis were included in a recent article in the Journal of Business & Economic Statistics. Read more.

JBES Study Finds Housing Market Cycles Are Longer

JBES Study Finds Housing Market Cycles Are Longer A statistical analysis of data from 20 industrial countries covering the period 1970 to 2012 suggests housing market pricing cycles-normal, boom and bust phases-have become longer over the last four decades. The study also found longer down phases can have dire consequences on national and international economies. An article on the study was published recently in the Journal of Business & Economic Statistics. Read more.

SWB Honored by Humanity Road

SWB Honored by Humanity Road Statistics without Borders (SWB) is a recipient of Humanity Road's 2014 Da Vinci Award, which is presented to a patron or contributor that supports its programs. SWB was honored for coauthoring and publishing Guide to Social Media Emergency Management Analytics, a tool for emergency managers and decision-makers that helps them identify and discuss relevant questions when planning a social media in emergency management response. “We wish to thank SWB for all their help in performing the data study and contributing to this important guidebook,” says Humanity Road President Chris Thompson.

Humanity Road delivers disaster preparedness and response information to the global mobile public before, during, and after a disaster. Read more.

Significance Devoting October Issue to World Statistics Day

Significance Devoting October Issue to World Statistics Day To mark World Statistics Day in October, Significance will devote its October issue to articles that highlight the important contributions statistics is making in different parts of the world. It plans to publish one article from each of the main geographic regions: North America, South America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. “We are particularly keen that articles published about the developing world do not fall into the “bad news” trap—that is, focusing only on stories of war, death, disease, poverty, and natural disasters,” says Significance Editor Brian Tarran. Instead, the magazine is seeking tales of interesting work and novel applications of statistics from parts of the planet that are too often overlooked by the media, he adds. Please send article ideas or recommendations for potential contributors to Tarran at

World Statistics Day 2015 Is October 20

World Statistics Day 2015 Is October 20 During World Statistics Day 2015 on October 20, the global statistical community will showcase its achievements and ongoing work that is helping to better the lives of people around the world. To launch this special event, the United Nations Statistics Division has created a website and released a kick-off video that unveils the celebration's logo. The UN encourages the statistical community to embrace this international observance and showcase its achievements and current work to achieve “Better data. Better lives.”—the celebration's theme. The ASA will participate in the celebration. Follow World Statistics Day on Twitter at #StatsDay15. Learn more.

Winner of Free ASA Membership

Winner of Monthly Drawing for FREE ASA Membership Congratulations to Alison Luciano, winner of the April drawing for FREE ASA membership.


Other Recent Headlines

Call for Editor-in-Chief Nominations & Applications

SIAM/ASA Journal on Uncertainty Quantification call for Editor-in-Chief Nominations and Applications. For more information, click here.

Bruce Lindsay Passes

Bruce G. Lindsay, 68, passed away May 5 in State College, Pennsylvania, of cancer. He was the Eberly Family Chair in Statistics at Penn State University, where he joined the faculty as an assistant professor in 1979 after completing a postdoctoral fellowship at Imperial College London. Lindsay spent his entire career at Penn State, where he advised 31 PhD students. He contributed important innovations in the theory of mixture models and likelihood-based estimation, among many other topics. He gave the Fisher Lecture at the 2010 Joint Statistical Meetings, a talk that highlighted his capacity for deep geometric insights and uncanny knack for explaining difficult ideas simply. A memorial service is planned for May 31 in State College. Read the obituary.

Technometrics Seeks Book Reviewers

Technometrics is seeking additional reviewers for new books. The book review section publishes reviews of books that are directly relevant to the practice of statistics in the physical, chemical, and engineering sciences. Experience in these areas makes you a valuable reviewer for Technometrics. Read more...

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