3 December 2020

Dear {Contact_First_Name},

The countdown is on! We are in December now and in three weeks from today many of us will be celebrating Christmas Eve! I can't wait!

Just because it's December does not mean that we are winding things down at SSA or SSA's partner institutions. We still have a few events on offer, as you can see below. However, don't forget to check out the events  area of the SSA website too, because this is where our branches and sections advertise their meetings, webinars and workshops. And if you know of an event that you think would be of interest to the statistical community, please email me the details and I'll add it to the list.

Until next week,

Marie-Louise Rankin
SSA Executive Officer

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VIC Branch Meeting: Should statisticians all work from home, even after lockdown?

For our last SSA Vic event of the year (17, November), 50 statisticians gathered to find out whether we should continue to work from home after lockdown ends. 

For the affirmative, Andrew Robinson and Emily Karahalios shared all the positives about working from home: time saved on commuting, supporting local businesses and the ability to work from any location (even Victoria's finest beaches). For the negative, Thomas Lumley (who, as Andrew pointed out, was able to join all the way from New Zealand) and Karen Lamb reminded us of the challenges of zoom meetings, the difficulty engaging students with online teaching, the absence of water-cooler chit chat and what happens when you can't get to the hairdresser.

A social gathering followed on Airmeet. Overall, it was a great, lighthearted event to end the year.

Rheanna Mainzer

Congratulations to our President, Dr Jessica Kasza of Monash University, on the award of her ARC Discovery Project, titled "Increasing the efficiency and interpretability of stepped wedge cluster randomised trials".

Learn more

STA announces new President-elect and Executive

Science & Technology Australia is pleased to announce the election of new members to its Executive Committee at STA’s Annual General Meeting on Monday.

Silo-busting innovator and industry-engaged research entrepreneur Professor Mark Hutchinson is STA’s new President-elect. He will become President at the end of or next AGM in November 2021.

For seven years, Mark has been Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Nanoscale Biophotonics at the University of Adelaide. He will be the first South Australian to serve as STA President.

The centre has produced 15 spin-outs and start-ups and has 30 flourishing industry partnerships. Its silo-busting approach encourages engineers, physicists, chemists and biologists to work across disciplines to build new products and techniques using light at the cellular level.

STA’s newly-elected executive members are:

·         President-elect – Professor Mark Hutchinson

·         Secretary – Jas Chambers

·         Policy Committee Chair – Professor Sharath Sriram

·         Early Career Representative – Dr Chloe Taylor

Previously advertised

NSW Branch: 21st J.B. Douglas Awards - Tuesday 8 December, 1:15pm-6pm AEDT

  • Anne Soerensen, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, Macquarie University & Section of Biostatistics, Department of Public Health, University of Copenhagen
  • Desalegn Markos Shifti, School of Medicine and Public Health, Faculty of Health and Medicine, The University of Newcastle
  • Fiona Kim, School of Mathematics and Statistics, University of New South Wales
  • Laura Cartwright, School of Mathematics and Applied Statistics, University of Wollongong
  • Nghia Nyugen, Discipline of Business Analytics, University of Sydney Business School
  • Ra'ed Al-Surdeh, School of Computer, Data, and Mathematical Sciences, Western Sydney University
  • Torri Callan, School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, University of Technology Sydney
  • Yingxin Lin, School of Mathematics and Statistics, The University of Sydney

Details of the programme, a list of our generous sponsors and the titles of talks will be available here. This event will be followed by the NSW Branch's

Annual Lecture

The new normal: distributional regression

Professor Gillian Heller, Clinical Trials Centre, University of Sydney

Tuesday 8 December, 6pm-7pm AEDT

Regression analysis has evolved almost beyond recognition in the last 40 years. Vastly increased flexibility has been gained at the cost of an increase in mathematical and interpretational complexity, enabled by the exponential increase in computational power over the same period. I will share my personal experiences in this area, and attempt to evaluate what we have lost and gained in the journey from the classical linear model to distributional regression.

Register here

Melbourne Centre for Data Science is pleased to host Ciprian Crainiceanu, Professor of Biostatistics at Johns Hopkins University, for an online  seminar entitled “Objective physical activity monitoring using wearable devices".

When: Friday 4 December, 10:00am - 11:00am AEDT

The seminar will show that physical activity summaries derived from accelerometers: (1) substantially outperform traditional risk factors of mortality; and (2) provide strong complementary information about the health status of the individual in addition to traditional risk factors. It will also discuss methodological problems and some potential solutions raised by new type of data generated by wearable accelerometers.

Register here


Journal of Agricultural, Biological, and Environmental Statistics Editor – call for nominations now open

The International Biometric Society and the American Statistical Association have invited nominations for the position of editor of the Journal of Agricultural, Biological, and Environmental Statistics (JABES).

JABES publishes articles of immediate and practical value to applied researchers and statistical consultants in the agricultural sciences, the biological sciences (including biotechnology), and the environmental sciences (including those dealing with natural resources).

Nominations should be sent to no later than Friday January 15th, 2021.  Once received, nominations will be presented to the Chair of the JABES Management Committee for further consideration. Interested individuals are encouraged to nominate themselves.

More details are available here

If you have news from the Australian statistical community to share in Stats Matters and Events, please get in touch with us!

Last chance!

Tired of surveys but eager to leave feedback? Tell us what you are missing from your SSA membership. Or let us know what we do well. We will listen. 

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