Statistics in Physical Engineering Sciences Award

Most Recent Winners

Elizabeth Kelly

Los Alamos National Laboratory, Statistical Sciences Group

Kirk Veirs

Los Alamos National Laboratory, Statistical Sciences Group

Brian Weaver

Los Alamos National Laboratory, Statistical Sciences Group

About the Award

The Statistics in Physical and Engineering Sciences (SPES) Award was originally established in 1990 as the Statistics in Chemistry Award. Its purpose was to recognize outstanding collaborative endeavors between statisticians and chemists. Beginning in 2015, the award’s scope was expanded to recognize excellence in partnerships among statisticians, scientists, and engineers across the many disciplines encompassed by the physical and engineering sciences. Consequently, the award was renamed the SPES Award to reflect this more inclusive scope.

The award is sponsored by donations from key industrial, pharmaceutical, and manufacturing companies. Each award recipient receives an engraved award and shares a cash prize.

Selection Criteria

The SPES Award is bestowed upon a distinguished individual or individuals based on their innovative use of statistics to solve a high-impact problem in the physical and engineering sciences.

In odd-numbered years, the award is presented for a paper published in a refereed statistics, physics, chemistry, or engineering journal during the previous two years. In even-numbered years, the award is presented for distinguished work performed during the previous two years by a collaborative team of statisticians and practitioners in an industrial, manufacturing, or research organization.

To be eligible for the award, at least one member of the team must be a member of the ASA and a member of the Section on Physical and Engineering Sciences when nominated; however, there are no length-of-membership requirements.

Award Recipient Responsibilities

The award recipients are responsible for providing current photographs and general personal information in time to meet required deadlines as set by the American Statistical Association (ASA) for the year the award is presented. The ASA uses this information to publicize the award and prepare the prize(s).


Nominations are due by February 20 each year. If the deadline date falls on a weekend, nominations will be accepted through the Monday following the due date. The award is presented at the Joint Statistical Meetings of the same year.

Nomination letters, along with publication(s), should be sent to Ming Li, chair of the Statistics in Physical and Engineering Sciences Award committee. Unpublished work should be described in a format similar to a published paper.


Please contact the committee chair.

Recent Award Recipients

2019: Simon Mak, Chih-Li Sung, Xingjian Wang, Shiang-Ting Yeh, Yu-Hung Chang, V. Roshan Joseph, Vigor Yang, and C. F. Jeff Wu
2018: Xiao Liu, Youngdeok Hwang, and Kyongmin Yeo
2017: Caleb King, Yili Hong, Stephanie DeHart, Patrick DeFeo, and Rong Pan
2016: Dennis K.J. Lin
2015: Ming Li, William Q. Meeker, R. Bruce Thompson
2014: Greg Piepel, Aimme Holmes, Alejandro Herendia-Langner, Kearn Lee, and Steve Kelly
2013: Peter Goos and Steven G. Gilmour
2012: Bradley Jones and Scott Allen
2011: Thomas Brendan Murphy, Nema Dean, and Adrian E. Raftery