CNSTAT - TOPICS
Coordinating and Sustaining Federal Statistics
Decennial Census and American Community Survey
Federal Household and Business Surveys
Health and Social Welfare
Principles and Practices for a Federal Statistical Agency
Science Technology and Innovation (STI) Indicators
Statistical Methods and Estimates for Policy Use
“Government’s Role in the Arts”, Live on C-SPAN’s “America by the Numbers” Segment of “Washington Journal”
More than two-thirds of American adults accessed art via electronic media. Find out more on Nov. 29 at approximately 9:20 a.m. EST as Sunil Iyengar, research and analysis director at the National Endowments for the Arts, discusses U.S. adult population taking part in at least one kind of arts activity.
Watch Govenment’s Role in the Arts w/ @NEAarts Sunil Iyengar Fri Nov 29 @ 9:20am EST on @CSPANWJ #ABTN http://go.usa.gov/2yHY.
Each Friday, C-SPAN’s “America By the Numbers” segment features information from the federal statistical system. The program highlights the trends and allows the public to call in or email their views. More information on previous C-SPAN programs is available at http://www.census.gov/newsroom/cspan/.
— October 18, 2013 —
We note with sadness the untimely death of Suzanne Bianchi, the former Dorothy Meier chair in social equities and distinguished professor in the Department of Sociology at UCLA, who died November 4, 2013, at her home in Santa Monica, CA, at age 61. An expert on gender, work, and families who previously was professor of sociology at the University of Maryland and before that spent 16 years with the U.S. Census Bureau, she was best known for her research examining the amount of time parents spend with their children. From analyzing time-use diaries, she famously reported in 2000 that despite a large influx of women into the workforce, the amount of time mothers devote to children was relatively unchanged between 1965 and 1998. Mothers working outside the home were able to spend about the same amount of time with their children as mothers working in the home by reducing their hours of housework, sleep, and leisure time. She also found that fathers’ time with their children nearly doubled over 30 years. She served as a member of the CNSTAT panel that produced the report Nonresponse in Social Science Surveys—A Research Agenda, released earlier this year. She received her Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Michigan.
We extend our deep thanks and appreciation to Sean (“Jack”) Buckley for his significant contributions to the federal statistical system during his 3 years as commissioner of the National Center for Education Statistics and wish him all the best in his new appointment as senior vice president for research of the College Board, beginning January 1, 2014. Some of his accomplishments at NCES include helping to guide federal grants for massive expansions of state longitudinal student data systems; overseeing the Condition of Education's move to a digital format; and benchmarking the Nation's Report Card tests to the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS). Prior to being presidentially appointed and confirmed to head NCES in December 2010, Jack was associate professor of applied statistics at New York University, deputy commissioner of NCES from 2006 to 2008, and an affiliated researcher with the National Center for the Study of the Privatization in Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. He received an A.B. in government from Harvard and an M.A. and Ph.D. in political science from Stony Brook University.
We congratulate Mick Couper, research professor with the Survey Research Center at the University of Michigan, on his recent election to the International Statistics Institute (ISI). Mick served as a member of the CNSTAT Panel on the Redesign of the Consumer Expenditure Surveys, the Panel on Research on Future Census Methods (looking forward to 2010), and the Steering Committee for the Workshop on Survey Automation.
We congratulate Janet Currie, Henry Putnam professor of economics and public affairs and director of the Center for Health and Wellbeing at Princeton University, on her recent election to the Institute of Medicine (IOM) at the National Academies. She served on the CNSTAT Panel to Review the USDA Methodology for Estimating Eligibility and Participation for the WIC Program, the National Research Council/IOM Committee on the Health and Adjustment of Immigrant Children and Families, the Committee on Population, and the Board on Children, Youth, and Families.
We congratulate Greg Duncan, distinguished professor in the School of Education, University of California, Irvine, on receiving the 2013 Klaus J. Jacobs Research Prize for his path-breaking work on the lasting effects of poverty on child development. The prize has been awarded annually since 2009 by the Jacobs Foundation in honor of its founder, Swiss businessman and philanthropist Klaus Jacobs, for interdisciplinary scientific work of high social relevance to the personality development of children and young people. The prize comes with a sizeable grant that will enable Greg to work with neuroscientists, developmental psychologists, and economists to study 1,000 families at several sites around the United States to assess how poverty-reducing income supplements over a child’s first 3 years of life affect parenting and the child’s cognitive development. Greg is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and has served on the Advisory Committee to the National Research Council’s Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education. He has participated in several NRC/IOM reviews of the National Children’s Study and is currently chairing a congressionally mandated panel to review the design of the NCS Main Study.
We congratulate Daniel Kahneman, Eugene Higgins professor of psychology emeritus at Princeton University, on receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom, bestowed by President Barack Obama at a ceremony November 20, 2013. The medal is the nation's highest honor for individuals who have made contributions to U.S. culture, politics, sports and science. Kahneman was recognized for his pioneering work in applying cognitive psychology to economic analysis. Together with Amos Tversky, a cognitive and mathematical psychologist, he opened up the world to a new field of research, for which he and Tversky were recognized by winning the 2002 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences. Kahneman is a member of the Panel on Measuring Subjective Well-Being in a Policy-Relevant Framework, which will release its final report on December 4, 2013.
On October 31, 2013, the Office of Management and Budget Statistical and Science Policy Office released its latest “blue book,” Statistical Programs of the United States Government—Fiscal Year 2014
. This annual compendium is a “must” document for people who want to understand the breadth and depth of the government’s statistical activities. Its chapters include “Overview of the Federal Statistical System and Statistical Program Budgets,” “Principal Statistical Agency Programs,” Statistical Programs of Other Federal Agencies,” and “Statistical Standards, Interagency Groups, and Collaborative Initiatives.” The FY 2014 blue book is available in PDF
, Dillard professor in economics at the University of Maryland, will present the 2013 Julius Shiskin Award for Economic Statistics seminar
on Monday, December 16, 2013, 12:30 – 2:00 pm, in Conference Room 4 at the U.S. Census Bureau, Suitland, Maryland. John is one of two Shiskin Award winners in 2013; the other is Maurine Haver, president of Haver Analytics (see News from CNSTAT, May 2013). John served on CNSTAT and co-chaired its Panel on Business Formation, Dynamics, and Measurement. The title of his seminar is “Micro Data Research and Macro Level Understanding: Innovation at U.S. Statistical Agencies.”
Abstract: Understanding the U.S. economy and its people at the macro-level requires delving into micro-level data. Micro data research at U.S. statistical agencies has produced innovations that enhance our understanding of U.S. businesses and people. Such research has played a critical role in the development of new data products, discovering innovative methodologies, and assessing the quality and improving existing data products. Successful research programs at the statistical agencies have involved a strong internal research staff as well as active collaboration with external researchers in academia. A critical component of the latter has been programs to facilitate access to the micro data by external researchers. These access programs enable the statistical agencies to harness the creative energy of the U.S. academic community for the benefit of the entire U.S. statistical system. The discussion will focus on critical areas that the statistical agencies should be addressing and the role that micro data research access could play in addressing these challenges.
To be placed on the seminar attendance list at the Census Bureau, e-mail your name, affiliation, and citizenship (if other than U.S.) and the seminar name to email@example.com
by noon of December 11th or leave a message at 301-763-2583. Bring a photo ID (passport, if other than U.S. citizen) to the seminar. The Census Bureau is next to the Suitland Green Line Station in Suitland, MD.
, the Maurice Falk university professor of statistics and social science at Carnegie Mellon University, will deliver the 23rd Morris Hansen Lecture
, Tuesday afternoon, January 7, 2014, at the USDA Auditorium, Washington, DC. His topic is “Envisioning the 2030 Census,” based on his work with Bill Eddy for the Carnegie Mellon node
of the NSF-Census Research Network. Steve served as the third chair of CNSTAT (from 1981–84 and 1985–87), having previously served as a member from 1978–1981. He has served on numerous NRC panels on such topics as sharing research data, statistical assessments as evidence in the courts, decennial census methodology, evaluation of bilingual education studies, measuring racial discrimination, the polygraph and lie detection, and the technical and privacy dimensions of information on terrorism. He most recently served on the CNSTAT panel that released its report in November 2012, Options for Estimating Illegal Entries at the U.S.–Mexico Border. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and co-chair of its Report Review Committee. Discussing Steve’s lecture will be Ivan Fellegi
, former chief statistician of Statistics Canada, and Robert Groves
, provost of Georgetown University and former director of the U.S. Census Bureau. NOTE:
To register for the 23rd Hansen Lecture, please visit: http://www.nass.usda.gov/Education_and_Outreach/Morris_Hansen/index.php
. A Related Opportunity:
The Statistical and Applied Mathematical Sciences Institute (SAMSI) 2013-2014 Program on Computational Methods in the Social Sciences is sponsoring a workshop on Computational Methods for Censuses and Surveys in Washington, DC, at the BLS conference center, January 8-10, 2014 (Organizing Committee: Connie Citro, Michael L. Cohen, John Eltinge, Stephen Fienberg, and Jerry Reiter). The workshop will address related methodological issues to those in Steve’s Hansen Lecture.
To learn more and to register, please visit: http://www.samsi.info/workshop/2013-14-cmss-computational-methods-censuses-and-surveys-january-8-10-2014/
Please see the C-SPAN web site
for announcements of upcoming C-SPAN Washington Journal
sessions on “America by the Numbers,”
which feature interviews with federal statistical agency heads on a wide variety of topics. The programs highlight trends and allow the public to call in or email their views. Links to videos of previous C-SPAN ABTN programs are available at the same site.
Capturing Change in Science, Technology, and Innovation: Improving Indicators to Inform Policy, the final report of the CNSTAT and Board on Science, Economic, and Technology Policy Panel on Developing Science, Technology, and Innovation Indicators for the Future, was released in prepublication form, November 25, 2013. It is available in PDF; printed copies will be available shortly. The panel was requested by the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics (NCSES) and co-chaired by Robert Litan (Bloomberg Government) and Andrew Wyckoff (OECD).
The Report in Brief—
Since the 1950s, under congressional mandate, the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF)— through NCSES and its predecessors—has produced regularly updated measures of research and development expenditures, employment and training in science and engineering, and other indicators of the state of U.S. science and technology. A more recent focus has been on measuring innovation in the corporate sector. NCSES not only collects its own data on science, technology, and innovation (STI) activities, but also incorporates data from other agencies to produce indicators that are used for monitoring purposes— including comparisons among sectors, regions, and with other countries—and for identifying trends that may require policy attention and generate research needs. NCSES provides extensive tabulations and microdata files for in-depth analysis. Capturing Change in Science, Technology, and Innovation provides recommendations about the need for revised, refocused, and newly developed indicators of STI activities that would enable NCSES to respond to changing policy concerns. The report identifies both existing and potential data resources and tools that NCSES could exploit to further develop its indicators program. Finally, the report considers strategic pathways for NCSES to move forward with an improved STI indicators program that will enhance NCSES's ability to produce indicators that capture change in science, technology, and innovation to inform policy and optimally meet the needs of its user community.
Estimating the Incidence of Rape and Sexual Assault, the final report of the CNSTAT Panel on Measuring Rape and Sexual Assault in Bureau of Justice Statistics Household Surveys, co-chaired by William Kalsbeek (University of North Carolina) and Candace Kruttschnitt (University of Toronto), was released in prepublication form, November 19, 2013. It is available in PDF; printed copies will be available shortly.
The Report in Brief—
Rape and sexual assault are among the most injurious crimes a person can inflict on another. The effects are devastating, extending beyond the initial victimization to consequences that can include unwanted pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections, sleep and eating disorders, and other emotional and physical problems. Understanding the frequency and context under which rape and sexual assault are committed is vital in directing resources for law enforcement and support for victims and in identifying interventions that can reduce the risk of future attacks. At the request of the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the panel considered best practices for measuring rape and sexual assault in the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) and other BJS household surveys. While the NCVS is the premier survey for estimating most types of crimes, including those not reported to the police, the panel concluded that it likely is undercounting rape and sexual assault and that the most accurate counts of rape and sexual assault cannot be achieved without measuring them separately from other victimizations. The panel recommended that BJS develop a separate survey for measuring rape and sexual assault. The new survey should more precisely define ambiguous words such as "rape," give more privacy to respondents, and take other steps that would improve the accuracy of responses. BJS already has research and testing under way along these lines through a contract with Westat.
Research Opportunities Concerning the Causes and Consequences of Child Food Insecurity and Hunger: A Workshop Summary, was released in prepublication form on September 5, 2013. This CNSTAT and Food and Nutrition Board workshop was chaired by James Ziliak (University of Kentucky) and sponsored by the Economic Research Service and Food and Nutrition Service, USDA. The workshop summary is available in PDF; printed copies will be available shortly.
The Report in Brief—
Section 141 of The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 provides funding for a research program on the causes and consequences of childhood hunger and food insecurity, and the characteristics of households with childhood hunger and food insecurity, with a particular focus on efforts to improve the knowledge base regarding contributing factors, geographic distribution, programmatic effectiveness, public health and medical costs, and consequences for child development, well-being, and educational attainment. The Economic Research Service and Food and Nutrition Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture conducted two outreach efforts to obtain input from the research community and other stakeholders to help focus on areas and methods with the greatest research potential. First, the Food and Nutrition Service sought written comments to selected questions through publication of a Federal Register Notice. Second, FNS commissioned a workshop under the auspices of the Committee on National Statistics of the National Research Council and the Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine.
The summary of the workshop (held in April 2013) reviews the adequacy of current knowledge, identifies research gaps, and considers data availability on economic, health, social, cultural, demographic, and other factors that contribute to childhood hunger or food insecurity. It also considers the geographic distribution of childhood hunger and food insecurity; the extent to which existing federal assistance programs reduce childhood hunger and food insecurity; childhood hunger and food insecurity persistence and the extent to which they are due to gaps in program coverage, the inability of potential participants to access programs, or the insufficiency of program benefits or services. The summary, which includes an extensive bibliography, will be a resource to inform discussions about the public health and medical costs of childhood hunger and food insecurity through its focus on determinants of child food insecurity and hunger, individual, community, and policy responses to hunger, impacts of child food insecurity and hunger, and measurement issues.
Reminder: PDF versions of CNSTAT and NAS reports are available for free download at The National Academies Press website, http://www.nap.edu. NOTE: The download site asks for your e-mail and a password. If you don’t have an NAP account and don’t want to have one, then provide your e-mail and click “I don’t have an account;” on the next page click “accept NAP policies” and “log in as guest”.
Reminder: Slides from previous CNSTAT public seminars, and from several major workshops, are available on the Presentations page on the CNSTAT website.
CNSTAT holds three regular meetings each year, with its spring and fall meeting dates following a set formula; our May meetings are always the Thursday–Friday preceding Mother’s Day and our October meetings are always the second-to-last Thursday–Friday of the month. Here are the next three meetings: CNSTAT’s 123rd meeting will be held February 6-7, 2013, in Washington, DC. It will be a retreat meeting; there will be no agency head lunch or public seminar.
CNSTAT’s 124th meeting will be held May 8–9, 2014, in the NAS main building at 2101 Constitution Ave., NW, Washington, DC. On the 9th, the meeting will feature a luncheon with statistical agency heads, followed by a public seminar, beginning with light refreshments at 2 pm and ending with a reception at 4:30 pm. Angus Deaton, Dwight D. Eisenhower professor of economics and international affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and the Economics Department at Princeton University, will be the featured speaker at the seminar. He will discuss challenges in measuring inequality, drawing on his recently published book, The Great Escape: Health, Wealth, and the Origins of Inequality. Angus served on CNSTAT, the panel that produced the 1995 report, Measuring Poverty—A New Approach, and the panel that produced the 2002 report, At What Price? Conceptualizing and Measuring Cost-of-Living and Price Indexes.
CNSTAT’s 125th meeting will be held October 23-24, 2014, in the NAS main building at 2101 Constitution Ave, NW, Washington, DC. On the 24th, the meeting will feature a luncheon with statistical agency heads, followed by a public seminar, beginning with light refreshments at 2 pm and ending with a reception at 4:30 pm.
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