Richard Boys 1960-2019

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We are shocked and saddened to hear of the death of our current Series C joint editor and former RSS Council member, Professor Richard Boys.

Richard was a professor of applied statistics at Newcastle University, where he led its statistics research group. He was an applied Bayesian statistician with a wide range of interests and published papers in all three series of the Society's journal. Much of his recent work focused on inference for partially observed stochastic processes, particularly in stochastic systems biology, hidden Markov models and inference in complex systems using emulators.

RSS nominated for six Memcom awards

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We are delighted to have been nominated in six categories at the 2019 Memcom Membership Excellence awards.

The annual awards are specifically for professional bodies, trade associations and other not-for-profit membership organisations to enter.

Draft programme unveiled for RSS 2019 Conference

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The organisers of this year’s RSS International Conference in Belfast have announced the draft programme for the event which features seven keynote sessions and more than 50 invited sessions and workshops.

Kim Kavanagh, this year's honorary officer for the RSS conference, says that the board have strived to ensure that the programme is, once again, 'extremely diverse with something to suit all statistical interests'.

Siobhan Carey opening keynote speaker at RSS 2019

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We are delighted to announce that the opening keynote talk at RSS 2019 Conference on the evening of Monday 2 September will be given by Siobhan Carey, chief executive of the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA).

Siobhan is passionate about the role of data in decision making and in supporting public debate. Prior to joining NISRA she spent time as chief statistician at both the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and the Department for International Development in London, as well as working in the Office for National Statistics in Newport and the Central Statistics Office in Cork, Ireland.

RSS fellows co-sign Nature article on ‘statistical significance’

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A number of RSS fellows, including RSS president Deborah Ashby and past president Sir David Spiegelhalter, have co-signed a Nature editorial that calls for the ‘the entire concept of statistical significance to be abandoned’. The editorial, which had more than 850 co-signaturies, follows a special edition of the American Statistical Association’s journal, The American Statistician, which has compiled articles all discussing ‘A World Beyond p < 0.05’.

The RSS welcomes the debate moving forward; we have hosted several meetings to discuss the issue, including a session at last year’s Conference featuring David Cox, Deborah Mayo, Richard D Morey and Aris Spanos. Our flagship magazine Signficance has also featured an editorial on the subject.

RSS launches new women in data science and statistics group

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The RSS formally launched its new Special Interest Group for Women in Data Science and Statistics last Friday on International Women's Day (8 March 2019). 

The group aims to bring together women studying and working in the field of statistics and data science. It will strive to support and increase visibility of women, as well as advocate for opportunities in this field.

Hands-on statistics resources in Teaching Statistics journal

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Congratulations to RSS fellows Dr Laura Bonnett and Dr Simon White, whose article on demonstrating to 11‐18 year-olds how population modelling using sampling works has been published in the journal Teaching Statistics:

The article, ‘Investigating populations via penguins and their poo!’ describes an activity that uses toy penguins and poo emojis to demonstrate how aerial photographs of penguin guano can be used to estimate the population of an entire penguin colony.

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