Super Sessions from the Social Statistics Section!
The Social Statistics Section (SSS) is excited to present its sponsored sessions at the JSM to be held in Toronto from August 8th to 12th. We have an assorted offering of invited sessions, regular and topic contributed sessions and luncheons. The sessions include presentations on topics such as classifying race/ethnicity, evaluating the quality of small area estimates from the American Community Survey, technical advances in the analysis of social sciences data, and the challenges of developing national indicators.
Sessions including authors invited by the Social Statistics Section are:
Congratulations to the GSS and/or SSS Section members who were elected Fellows of the American Statistical Association this year! The following will be among those honored at the Joint Statistical Meetings on Tuesday evening:
Jesse A. Berlin
The Government Statistics Section (GSS) is excited to announce its line-up of sponsored sessions for the Joint Statistical Meetings (JSM) in Toronto next month. These sessions represent a diverse and ambitious set of topics and papers, with some overall themes tying many of them together.
Improving data quality and measurement are common themes of the GSS program. The program includes very interesting sessions on topics such as decennial census coverage measurement, measurement of sexual orientation for policy and research, improving measures of the amount of research and development in the U.S., and a gold standard for social measurement. Data confidentiality and implementation of federal regulation of data are also featured underlying themes of several of the general sessions.
The GSS invited sessions include:
See the enclosed program excerpt for dates and times.GSS is also sponsoring many strong topic contributed sessions:
Finally, the GSS is co-sponsor of the 2004 Student Paper Competition (along with the Social Statistics and Survey Research Methods Sections). The five student winners from this year’s competition will present their papers in a special topic contributed session slated for Tuesday, August 10 at 10:30, in TCC-802 A.
The Program Chair thanks the organizers of our invited and topic contributed paper and panel sessions – you made my job easy! Thanks also to GSS members who volunteered to chair sessions. And a special thank you goes to Phil Steel of the U.S. Census Bureau for his able assistance and hard work on the program.
The GSS program for 2004 has some exciting topics and there should be something of interest for everyone. Arrive early and often!
The following short courses may be of particular interest to GSS/SSS members:
Presenters: J.N.K. Rao, School of Mathematics and Statistics, Carleton University and Sharon Lohr, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, Arizona State University.
Abstract: This two-day course will be an introduction to and appraisal of recent developments in sample survey methods. Several topics of practical interest will be covered: survey design and inferential issues, analysis of survey data with emphasis on re-sampling methods, design and estimation in dual frame surveys, variance estimation under imputation for missing data, and small area estimation. Applications of the methods in U.S. and Canadian surveys and evaluations of software packages for survey data will also be presented. Prerequisite knowledge is a basic course in survey sampling at the level of W. G. Cochran’s 1977 book Sampling Techniques or S. Lohr’s 1999 book Sampling: Design and Analysis. Exposure to basic courses in mathematical statistics and linear models will also be helpful but are not essential.
Presenters: Dr. Paul Biemer, RTI International and Odum Institute for Research in Social Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and, Dr. Lars Lyberg, Statistics Sweden and Stockholm University.
Abstract: The course will span a range of topics dealing with the quality of data collected through the survey process. Total survey error, as measured by the mean squared error and its component parts, is the primary criterion for assessing the quality of the survey data. The course begins with a discussion of total survey error and its relationship to survey costs and provides a number of measures of survey quality that will be used throughout the course. Then the major sources of survey error are discussed in some detail. In particular, we examine a) the origins of each error source (i.e., its root causes), b) the most successful methods that have been proposed for reducing the errors emanating from these error sources, and c) methods that are most often used in practice for evaluating the effects of the source on total survey error. The target audience for the course is persons who perform tasks associated with surveys and may work with survey data but are not necessarily trained survey researchers.
Roger Herriot Award to Be Given at JSM in Toronto
The Social Statistics Section, along with the Government Statistics Section and the Washington Statistical Society, will present their 2004 recipient of the Roger Herriot Award for Innovation in Federal Statistics at the Joint Statistical Meetings in Toronto. Session 170 at the JSM –Evaluating the Quality of Small Area Data from the American Community Survey: Evidence from Four Test Sites -- has been designated as this year’s Herriot Award Session. The award will be presented on August 10, 2004, 10:00 a.m. to 10:20 a.m.
The annual award is presented to a statistician who exemplifies the qualities of Roger Herriot, who was the Associate Commissioner for Statistical Standards and Methodology at the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) before he died in 1994. The award recognizes the recipient’s unique contributions to solving difficult statistical problems in federal data collection efforts—a key trait of Roger’s. Last year’s recipient was David Banks, Duke University. The award committee consists of Phil Kott (GSS), Sameena Salvucci (SMDI), and Marilyn Seastrom (NCES).
Wray Jackson Smith Scholarship
Congratulations to Ms. Jennifer Park, of the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) - winner of the 3rd annual Wray Jackson Smith Scholarship (WJSS) Award!
The Government Statistics Section of the American Statistical Association (ASA) sponsors a scholarship in memory of Wray Jackson Smith, a founding member of the section and long-time contributor to federal statistics. The WJSS, co-sponsored with the Social Statistics Section of ASA, the Washington Statistical Society, the Caucus for Women in Statistics, Mathematica Policy Research, Harris-Smith Institutes, and Synectics for Management Decisions, Inc., is intended to reward promising young statisticians for their diligence, thereby encouraging them to consider a future in government statistics. Jennifer’s research involves two different cohorts selected with different sampling strategies. She will use the Wray Jackson Smith Scholarship to fund further study in survey sampling, to help her better understand and analyze the Early Childhood Longitudinal Studies’ data with which she has been working at the NCES.
Nominations for the WJSS are accepted each Spring. Look for announcements in the Amstat News and through this newsletter – and help us spread the word. Individuals and organizations interested in contributing to this very worthy effort should contact the WJSS Committee at email@example.com. Contributions to the Wray Jackson Smith Scholarship Fund are tax deductible.
Beth A. Kilss to Receive the Jeanne E. Griffith Mentoring Award
The Jeanne E. Griffith Mentoring Award Committee is pleased to announce that the second award has been given to Beth A. Kilss, Supervisory Statistician and Chief, Statistical Data Section, Special Studies Branch of the Statistics of Income Division (SOI) of the Internal Revenue Service. The Griffith Mentoring Award was established to encourage the mentoring of younger staff in the Federal statistical system. The award is co-sponsored by the Interagency Council on Statistical Policy, the Council of Excellence in Government, the Council of Professional Associations on Federal Statistics, the Washington Statistical Society, and the Social and Government Statistics Sections of the ASA. Beth is recognized for her impact on the lives and careers of her immediate staff, other SOI staff, and for her encouragement and support for training and development activities, as well as her support for statistical interagency mentoring activities.
Winners of the 2004 Student Paper Competition
We are pleased to announce the winners for this year’s student paper competition, jointly sponsored by the Section on Government Statistics, Social Statistics Section and Section on Survey Research Methods:
The winners will present their papers in a topic contributed session scheduled for Tuesday, August 10, at 10:30 am. We encourage you to attend this session to show our support to the winners. Each of the five students will receive a subsidy of $800 to cover travel expenses to attend JSM 2004.
We thank all students who submitted papers for this year’s competition. We received many outstanding papers and the selection of the winners was indeed a challenging task. We encourage all students to submit papers for the 2005 competition.
The Government Statistics Section is sponsoring four roundtable luncheon discussions on a diverse range of topics at the Joint Statistical Meetings this year. These luncheons provide an enjoyable way to learn more about an interesting topic you wish you knew more about, or to share your views and experience with others interested in the same area.
One perennial issue in federal statistics is access to confidential microdata. An approach that has been receiving increasing attention and research is creating simulated microdata that preserves many of the relationships in the real data but does not reveal any confidential information. If you want to understand more about this fast growing area, then have lunch on Monday, August 9th with Jerry Reiter from Duke University, who has consulted and published extensively on this topic. Jerry will provide a non-technical discussion of the foundations of this approach, focusing on its benefits and limitations compared to other disclosure limitation methods.
On Tuesday, August 10th, the first luncheon will be led by Clyde Tucker from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, who will be talking about the upcoming “International Conference on Telephone Survey Methodology.” Come discuss some of the issues the conference will address, such as changes in telephone systems and how people use telephones, and learn about plans for the monograph and contributed papers.
Want to learn more about and discuss a wide variety of breaking issues facing Federal statistics? Then have lunch on Tuesday, August 10th with Ed Spar, the Executive Director of the Council of Professional Associations on Federal Statistics (COPAFS). Come learn about COPAFS’ role as an advocate for users of federal statistics, and how COPAFS works with statistical agencies, user communities, and Congress to foster the production and use of high quality data. Ed will also talk about upcoming issues that are of importance to users of Federal statistics. Come and share your perspectives.
These three roundtable luncheons will be spread over three days so that those of you who are interested in more than one topic can attend more than one luncheon. We are expecting this year’s “menu” to be popular, so reserve your seat now! Questions about any of the Government Statistics Section roundtable luncheons can be addressed to Brian Harris-Kojetin at firstname.lastname@example.org
See you in Toronto!
So, you don’t usually “do lunch,” not to mention luncheons. Some of the luncheon discussion topics may sound intriguing, but you’re thinking, “I’m no expert on this. What would I contribute?” No problem. You don’t have to be an expert to contribute. The roundtable discussions can also benefit from someone really listening and asking thoughtful questions.
The American Community Survey, Poverty Measurement, the Response Rate Challenge, and Conducting Surveys of Physicians are our luncheon topics this year.
On Monday, August 9th, Deborah Griffin of the U.S. Census Bureau will lead a discussion on “Rolling out the American Community Survey.” Since 1994, the Census Bureau has been designing, testing, and developing the methods needed to collect detailed demographic, social, economic, and housing data in an annual survey, rather than as part of the decennial census. This session will discuss the readiness of the ACS for full implementation and the current plans for data products.
On Tuesday, August 10th, Daniel Weinberg of the U.S. Census Bureau will lead a discussion on “Recent Developments in Poverty Measurement.” The Census Bureau and others have carried out substantial research in support of a process that may lead to changes in the way the Office of Management and Budget defines poverty. This roundtable luncheon session will update participants on the current status of the research.
Also, on Tuesday, August 10th, Brenda Cox of Battelle and Roberta Sangster of Bureau of Labor Statistics will lead a discussion on “Meeting the Response Rate Challenge.” This roundtable focuses on sharing information on new tools and old standbys that assist in meeting the response challenges posed by telephone and face-to-face surveys but without sacrificing data quality.
On Wednesday, August 11th, Marc Berk, NORC, and Sara Thran, American Medical Association will cover “New Challenges Conducting Surveys of Physicians.” Over the past 20 years it has become increasingly difficult to survey physicians and other medical providers. This session will discuss recent experience and identify design features that facilitate the implementation of high quality surveys of medical providers.
The fee for the luncheons is $35 and they are held from 12:30 to 1:50 p.m. Heart healthy, kosher, and vegetarian meals are available upon request. Menus are in the registration booklet in hardcopy and at www.amstat.org.
We hope to see you for lunch in Toronto. And yes, experts are welcome too!
On Monday, April 26, 2004, the GSS hosted a small one-day Workshop on Web-based Data Collection with the Federal Committee on Statistical Methodology (FCSM). The conference was held at the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Conference Center.
The program for the Workshop consisted of five sessions – two sets of concurrent morning sessions, one for business surveys and the other focusing on person/household data collection. Each session consisted of a panel of three speakers. The range of topics touched on included design and mode effects of Internet surveys, privacy and confidentiality issues, usability, sampling, coverage, and data quality. These panel discussions were followed by a plenary session in the afternoon that drew on the remarks from the morning sessions, included a presentation from the Office of Management and Budget on the E-Government Act, and concluded with some next steps and general discussion. Plans are to produce a report in the FCSM’s Statistical Policy Working Paper series that documents the highlights of the Workshop.
This first effort by the GSS to co-sponsor a conference was definitely a resounding success! The planning committee – Jerry Gates (Chair), Nancy Kirkendall, Dennis Fixler, and Wendy Alvey – thanks all the speakers for their contributions. Special appreciation is also due to John Bosley, at the Bureau of Labor Statistics, who provided invaluable assistance with the logistics.
The Government Statistics Section is pleased to welcome:
The Social Statistics Section winners are:
Congratulations to you all!
You didn't get your publication of the 2003 Proceeding for the Sections on Government Statistics and Social Statistics? The CD-Rom contains the proceedings for the Sections on Government Statistics and Social Statistics, as well as ALL other sections, and is very moderately priced at $35. If you haven't ordered your copy it is not too late. Go to the ASA Web site at http://www.amstat.org/publications/ and order your copy today.
GSS has established a listserve for GSS members. The GSSLIST provides an opportunity to communicate with other list members easily – ask a question, seek a reference, publicize a conference… It’s our own Chat Room!
The computer will then process the subscribe command using the sender's e-mail address. (To unsubscribe send the message SIGNOFF GSSLIST to email@example.com.)
The 2004 Statistical Policy Seminar, sponsored by the Council of Professional Associations on Federal Statistics and the Federal Committee on Statistical Methodology, will take place on December 15-16th at the Holiday Inn Select Bethesda, Bethesda, MD. The theme of this year’s meeting is Achieving Statistical Quality in a Diverse and Changing Environment.
The conference is geared towards federal statisticians, economists, and managers, as well as others in the broader statistical community, who share an interest in the quality of federal data. Sessions cover a broad range of topics, including:
Richard Kulka, Research Triangle Institute, will present the Keynote Address.
For more information on the program and registration, contact the COPAFS Office by phone at (703) 836-0404 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
The 2005 FCSM Research Conference will be held November 14-16, 2005, in the Washington, DC area. The conference will primarily feature contributed papers with formal discussion and software demonstrations on topics related to a variety of statistical research issues. Papers and demonstrations should address methodology, empirical studies, relevant issues, or topics for future statistical research. Papers must be original and not previously published or disseminated.
Possible topics include, but are not limited to:
Survey design and data collection –
To submit a paper or demonstration for consideration, send an abstract via e-mail by November 1, 2004, to Bill Mockovak, Program Chair, at email@example.com. Additional information about FCSM may be found on their website at www.fcsm.gov.
The USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) released 2002 Census of Agriculture data tables on June 3, 2004. All farms in the United States will be represented. Representation for all U.S. farms is an improvement over earlier census publications that included data only for farms on the census mail list. It has long been recognized that many small farm operations have been overlooked in the census process.
NASS Administrator, R. Ronald Bosecker, stated that “since the area samples were drawn at the State level, the adjusted numbers will have their best quality at the State level. Re-weighting may result in some over- and under-expansions for specific items at the county level, but representation of items on all sizes and types of farms should be much improved.”
The 2002 Census of Agriculture contains the first census data set on a coverage-adjusted basis representing all farms to the county level. Most censuses since 1969 have used detailed interviews in sample geographic areas to measure census coverage for selected items. Only in 1978 was there a prior attempt to provide coverage totals for all items, but data were presented only at the State and U.S. level.
To aid data users, the 1997 Census of Agriculture files were reprocessed, using the new procedures, to provide comparable data for 1997 and 2002 in the June 3 tables. This will provide the bridge from the earlier census data series to the new levels. There are no plans to attempt to use the same methodology for any census data sets before 1997.
The 2002 Census of Agriculture is the only source of uniform agricultural data across the United States. To learn more about the 2002 census, visit NASS’s Web site at: www.nass.usda.gov/census/.