Science Policy and Advocacy

The ASA’s science policy activities raise the profile of statistics nationally. By advocating on behalf of its members and providing resources to policymakers, the ASA promotes the practice and profession of statistics. Take advantage of the resources listed here and keep up to date on science policy–related developments by checking this page frequently.

Advocating for ASA Members

The ASA advocates widely on behalf of its members, with an emphasis on the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and National Science Foundation (NSF) budgets and the interests of the federal statistical agencies.

For the breadth of the ASA’s advocacy on behalf of its members, see Letters Signed/Sent and follow ASA Science Policy on Twitter: @ASA_SciPol.

Elevating the Profile of Statisticians in Policymaking

A central responsibility of the ASA’s science policy work is to raise the profile of statisticians in policymaking. The ASA does this through meetings with key policymakers or their staff, media outreach, and documents such as the following one-pagers, whitepapers, and links to more information:

Resources for Policymakers

The ASA provides resources for policymakers on a range of topics, from fundamental statistical concepts to how statistics can help advance science or inform a policy.

Keeping ASA Members Informed

An important ASA science policy activity is to keep ASA members apprised of current policy developments. This is done through various means, including personal interactions, the ASA’s monthly enewsletter, the ASA website, and the following resources:

Federal Budget Information

In addition to advocating for National Institutes of Health (NIH) and National Science Foundation (NSF) budgets and the interests of the federal statistical agencies, the ASA tracks the developments of the annual appropriations deliberations, starting with the president’s budget request the first Monday of February. The links to blog entries and Amstat News articles follow:

Action Center

The ASA Board of Directors approved sending call-to-action emails to ASA members during its August 2009 meeting about urgent statistical and science policy issues. The ASA encourages its members to communicate with their elected officials in Washington on matters important to them and the statistical profession. There are several options for communicating to your member of Congress:

  1. Call their offices. You can find contact information on the House of Representatives website (or enter your ZIP code at and Senate website.
  2. Use the contact feature on your senators’ and representative’s websites. See Option 1 for accessing these web pages.
  3. Request a meeting in a district/state office or in Washington: Meeting requests are typically handled through the member’s scheduler, whose name and contact information can be obtained by calling the member’s office. See “Keys to a Successful Hill Meeting.”

News and Highlights

A first look at federal statistical and research budgets in the FY18 Trump Administration Budget Blueprint
The ASA has begun tracking the FY18 federal budget process. See this first blog entry.

ASA Writes to Greek Prime Minister Regarding Charges against its former Chief Statistician, Dr. Andreas Georgiou
Find out more from the 3/29 ASA press release or this blog entry.

ASA, with Statistical Community, Watching Carefully for the Integrity of Federal Statistical Data

Statistical Issues Seen in Non-Statistics Proposals
The ASA Committee on Funded Research has produced a document to help researchers in other disciplines improve their funding proposals, Statistical Issues Seen in Non-Statistics Proposals. Please out distribute it to your non-statistics researcher networks and send the committee ideas for future projects.

ASA Experts Provide Recommendations to Funding Agencies for Supporting Reproducible Research
ASA reproducible research experts have created a document

highlighting some of the principles and challenges of reproducible research following those up with several recommendations for funding agencies to consider. As the document states, ASA’s “motivation is to help produce better scientific research and to highlight the role of statistics and statisticians. We do not intend these steps to be official recommendations that must be implemented but hope they are received as constructive contributions to the ongoing discussions.”


Policy Director’s Column

Policy Director’s Blog (Members Only)


Steve Pierson
Director of Science Policy
732 North Washington Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 302-1841

Amy Nussbaum
Science Policy Fellow
(703) 302-1862