Editor’s Letter—Vol. 30, No. 1

Dear CHANCE Colleagues,

CHANCE enters its 30th year in 2017, having been launched in 1988. Rather than claim that we’re 29 for the next several years, we’re going to celebrate turning 30 as a badge to be worn proudly. It has been a successful journey for the first statistics magazine, due to the dedication and generosity of many contributors.

Turning to the future, look for special themed issues of CHANCE devoted to climate change, modern slavery, poverty, clinical trials, and the women’s march … in statistics.

Leading off in this issue, Bob O’Neill, former director of the Office of Biostatistics at the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and Marcia Testa of Harvard University discuss development of a course in regulatory statistics at the Department of Biostatistics at Harvard University, in “Let’s go to the videotape.” The course, the first of its kind, uses case studies from publicly available information at the FDA, such as videos of FDA Advisory Committees, to illustrate and discuss statistical concepts such as missing data and multinational clinical trials in regulatory development. As one who has served on several FDA advisory committees, I can attest to the excellent educational opportunities associated with these proceedings. Bob and Marcia describe the course and how to develop a case study using publicly available FDA material.

CHANCE editor Toshimitsu Hamasaki and I then interview internationally recognized statistician Professor Geert Molenberghs of the Universiteit Hasselt and KU Leuven in Belgium. Geert is renowned for contributions in the areas of surrogate endpoints and longitudinal data, his teaching of short courses at professional meetings around the world, and as the founding director of the Center for Statistics at Hasselt University and director of the Interuniversity Institute for Biostatistics and Statistical Bioinformatics (I-BioStat), a joint initiative of the Hasselt and Leuven Universities. We talk with Geert about his remarkable career, research, and educational leadership.

In very sad news, Professor Steve Fienberg of Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), a giant in the field of statistics, passed away in December 2016. Steve and his fellow faculty member Bill Eddy were the founding co-editors of CHANCE. In this issue, Bill Eddy shares memories of his friend and colleague.

Proposals for and use of sports metrics are growing rapidly. Some metrics have revolutionized their respective sports, while other metrics are widely criticized. Jim Albert and Stephanie Kovalchik propose criteria for evaluating the utility of sports metrics. They then discuss the criteria within the context of serving in tennis. For those interested in statistics in sports, check out the upcoming New England Symposium on Statistics in Sports in September 2017.

At the intersection of statistics and art, check out Richard Ball’s creative piece on “Anti-isomorphisms in Classical Hypothesis Testing and Children’s Literature.”

In our columns, Andrew Gelman discusses why honesty and transparency are not enough to solve the replication crisis in Ethics and Statistics. Christian Robert reviews Une Vie Breve (One Hundred Twenty-One Days)>/em>, Statistical Rethinking, and Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies. Finally, Howard Wainer discusses the Grabovsky Curve in Visual Revelations.

Scott Evans

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