CMU Kicks-off International Year of Statistics Celebration

If you thought 2013 was just the year of the snake, you were mistaken. 2013 is also the International Year of Statistics.

Created by the American Statistical Association, Institute of Mathematical Statistics, International Biometric Society, International Statistical Institute (and the Bernoulli Society), and Royal Statistical Society, Statistics2013 is designed to showcase how “statistics have powerful and far-reaching effects on everyone, yet most people are unaware of their connection—from the foods they eat to the medicines they take—and how statistics improve their lives.”

The global event is supported by more than 1,700 organizations – from national and international statistics societies to government statistics organizations and research institutes.

Carnegie Mellon University’s Department of Statistics is joining the celebration. To kick-off the International Year of Statistics on the Pittsburgh campus, the Statistics Department is hosting world-renowned statistician Bradley Efron on Monday, March 18 at 4:30 p.m. in the University Center’s McConomy Auditorium.

Efron, professor of statistics and biostatistics at Stanford University, works on a combination of theoretical and applied topics. His work focuses on biomedical consulting projects, astronomy and physics.

In his talk at Carnegie Mellon, Efon will discuss the “Frequentist Accuracy of Bayesian Estimates.” He will explore how in the absence of prior information, popular Bayesian estimation techniques usually begin with some form of “uninformative” prior, intended to have minimal inferential influence. He argues that Bayes’ rule will still produce nice-looking estimates and credible intervals, but these lack the logical force attached to genuine priors, and require further justification. The talk will concern computational formulas that produce frequentist accuracy estimates for Bayesian estimates.

For more information on the International Year of Statistics, visit

To reminisce about how CMU’s Department of Statistics celebrated World Statistics Day in 2010, visit

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *