2011 News


 Distinguished Professor Noel Cressie Joins CSSM in 2012

noel cressie

Distinguished Professor Noel Cressie is to join the Centre for Statistical and Survey Methodology in 2012.

Professor Cressie is a world-leading researcher in statistical modelling and analysis of spatial and spatio-temporal data, in Bayesian and empirical-Bayesian methods, and in environmental sciences. The methodology has been applied in areas of "big science", such as remote sensing of the earth on a global scale, regional climate modelling in space and time, and Bayesian statistical exposure modeling from sources to biomarkers. Other research areas include spatial command and control, disease mapping, medical imaging, and ice-stream dynamics.

Noel was born in Fremantle, Western Australia. He received a Bachelor of Science degree with first class honours in Mathematics from the University of Western Australia and MA and PhD degrees in Statistics from Princeton University.

He is currently Professor of Statistics, Distinguished Professor of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, and Director of the Program in Spatial Statistics and Environmental Statistics at The Ohio State University. He was previously Professor of Statistics and Distinguished Professor in Liberal Arts and Sciences at lowa State University.

Noel is the author of around 250 refereed articles and of three books, including Statistics for Spatial Data, revised edition, 1993.

Professor Cressie is a Fellow of the American Statistical Association, the Institute of Mathematical Statistics, and the Spatial Econometrics Association. He is also and Elected Member of the International Statistical Institute. Other honors include: being awarded the Distinguished Achievement Medal of ASA's Section on Statistics and the Environment; the Twentieth Century Distinguished Service Award in Environmental Statistics; the Distinguished Scholar Award of The Ohio State University; and the 2009 Fisher Award and Lectureship from the Committee of Presidents of Statistical Societies. He is on the Institute for Scientific Information's (ISI) elite list of highly cited researchers.

Director of CSSM, Professor David Steel said "This is a fantastic appointment for us and will continue the development of our strong research capacity in Applied Statistics".


 Professor Ray Chambers works with Australian Rain Technologies in addressing current issues of water shortage and climate change

Since 2009, Professor Ray Chambers has been working with Australian Rain Technologies on research aimed at developing an economically effective and environmentally friendly process for increasing the amount of rain that falls across Australia. The ATLANT technology uses an array to generate negatively charged ions which are then, via wind uplift, transferred to the cloud layer, with the aim of encouraging the creation of negatively charged particles and eventually the formation of rain droplets. If successful, the technology will provide low cost and low energy rain enhancement at target locations around Australia. Since it is impossible to direct measure the extent of droplet formation in clouds due to the presence of the charged ions, Ray's role has been to use Statistical methods to indirectly measure the degree of success of the project by assessing the increase in actual rainfall following operation of ATLANT. His work has led to the development of new non-parametric bootstrapping techniques for spatio-temporal rainfall data that have so far shown a 90% chance of increased rainfall, with an estimated average 10% increase, in three successive annual trials of ATLANT near Adelaide.

Please view the video of the work Ray has conducted, by clicking the video link here

Australian Rain Technologies have also created a presentation, which includes segments of Ray's video. ART video link here


Statistics for the Australian Grains Industry

Professor Brian Cullis has recently been awarded funding from the Grains Research and Development Corporation for the project titled "Statistics for the Australian Grains Industry". This project involves six collaborating organisations, including the University of Wollongong (the lead agency), the University of Western Australia, Charles Sturt University, The University of Adelaide, Agri-Science Queensland (DEEDI) and the Centre for Mathematics Informatics and Statistics (CSIRO). Commencing in July 2011, the project is for a period of five years and involves a total of 17 Statisticians. The major themes and outputs include: Industry Liaison and training which aims to increase statistical competency and awareness of statistical principles of personnel involved in the Australian Grains Industry; Research and Collaborative Projects which aims to ensure "best practice" statistics for Australian grains industry research through the GRDC portfolio of projects and will strive to improve the cost-efficiency of research and enhance industry confidence and adoption of research findings and finally Software Development and Implementation which will develop robust, user friendly and cutting edge statistical software solutions.

How do we account for multilevel populations and social networks in the analysis of social statistics?

CSSM  combined with the Centre of Census and Survey Research (CSSR) at the University of Manchester conducted a workshop on the role of individuals, households, geographical groups and social networks in social statistics. The workshop was held in Manchester, April 19th - 20th 2011, and is part of a research project funded jointly by the UK Economic and Social Research Council and the Australian Research Council. The role of households, neighbourhoods and networks in social statistics.

Papers presented were:

Estimating disclosure risks for socially networked networked individuals in multilevel populations - Mark Elliot, CCSR, University of Manchester.

Methods for accounting for social network dependencies in multilevel populations: models and results - Mark Tranmer, CCSR, University of Manchester.

Using social network information in survey estimation - Thomas Suesse and Ray Chambers, CSSM, University of Wollongong.

Dealing with household dependencies in the analysis of social survey data - Thomas Suesse, David Steel and Robert Clark, CSSM, University of Wollongong.

International expert, Dr Pamela Campanelli to present a 2 day short course 

Pam Campanelli

The Sydney Business School and The Centre for Statistical and Survey Methodology are offering a 2 day course on Instrument Design and Testing. Dr Pamela Campanelli for the UK will be presenting the course. Dr Pamela Camanelli is a survey methodologist and charted statistician with a background in social statistics, survey methodology, and psychology from the University of Michigan and the London School of Economics. She has worked on large-scale surveys at the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan, the Centre for Survey Methods Research at the U.S. Bureau of Census, and the UK Institute for Social and Economic Research at the University of Essex. Most recently she was a Research Director at the Survey Methods Centre at the National Centre for Social Research, London.

To read more information about the course and to obtain a registration form, please visit our webpage CSSM Seminar and Events

Symposium held to honour Dr Ken Brewer

The Centre for Statistical and Survey Methodology and the Canberra Branch of the Statistical Society of Australia Inc, organised a symposium to honour Dr Ken Brewer on the occasion of his 80th Birthday. The event was held at ANU in Canberra and attended by over 50 people. The meeting recognised the significant contributions to the discipline and profession of Statistics in Australia and Internationally that Ken has made over a career spanning 60 years. We had four speakers who all presented aspects of their current research that build on the major contributions to statistical methodology and inference that Ken has made in his long and distinguished career. Further details of the event and previous meetings can be found out our webpage Fellows Research Meeting

ken 80th

New staff members welcomed

cssm new staff 2011
CSSM new staff members left to right: Dr Arthur Gilmore; Dr Mark Fielding; Dr Carole Birrell; Dr Marijka Batterham and Professor Brian Cullis

The Centre welcomes the following new staff members - Dr Mark Fielding and Dr Carole Birrell as new Lecturers, Dr Marijka Batterham as the new Director, Statistical Consulting Services; Professor Brian Cullis as Professor of Biometry and Dr Arthur Gilmore as Principal Research Fellow. 

Further information on each members is available on our people page.

Professor Ray Chambers follows footsteps of outstanding survey researchers....

Ray Chambers presented at the 2011 Distinguished Lecture in the Joint Program in Survey Methodology at the University of Maryland on April 7. In doing so, he has followed in the footsteps of outstanding survey researchers like Eleanor Singer, Paul Biemer, Rod Little, Colm O'Muircheartaighs, Chris Skinner, Jon Krosnick, Alastair Scott, J.N.K Rao, and Nora Cate Schaeffer. His topic was "Combining Data for Inference". More information can be read here.

Fourth Annual ASEARC Conference successfully delivered

The Fourth ASEARC Conference was held at the University of Western Sydney Parramatta campus from 17 - 18 February 2011. The conference covered a variety of areas including inference, education, application and involved over 60 delegates from a number of Universities, as well as Government, private and overseas organisations.

This is the fourth conference in a series. ASEARC's ongoing aims are to promote and support the collaboration between Universities concerning education, research and related activities such as involving technology, mentoring and consultancy services.

More details regarding ASEARC and the conference, are available on the ASEARC website.

PhD student presents at Annual International Conference on BioInformatics and Computational Biology

Jinda K

Jinda Kongcharoen, a PhD student supervised by Associate Professor Yan-Xia Lin has recently had a refereed paper accepted by the Annual International Conference on BioInformatics and Computational Biology BICB 2011 and published in the conference proceedings. The conference will be held at Hotel Fort Canning, Singapore from 28 February - 1 March 2011. Congratulations Jinda!  For more information on the conference please visit the website

Elected to the Board of the American Statistical Association (ASA)

Ray Chambers has been elected to the Board of the American Statistical Association (ASA). He will serve as International Representative on the ASA Board for 2011-2013. His responsibilities as International Representative of the ASA will be to participate in the Board of Directors meetings, providing when appropriate, an international perspective on the items being discussed, and to represent all the non-North American members of ASA worldwide.

New Grant for 2011-2013

Ray Chambers has been awarded a Discovery Program grant for 2011-2013 to carry out research on "Likelihood-Based Approach to Combined Surveys Inference". This project will focus on the development of statistical theory for efficient integration of information across multiple complex sample surveys. It will develop theory and methodology that will answer complex questions about relationships between important social, economic and health related variables that are presently measured in separate surveys.

Last reviewed: 2 September, 2013

Past Events

International Conference on Robust Statistics, July 2017