Journal of Official Statistics, Vol.26, No.3, 2010. pp. 443453

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Statistical Careers in United States Government Science Agencies

The role of statistics in those U.S. government agencies that focus on progress in science and engineering became prominent at the end of the Second World War. The success of statistics in that historical period came from the power of statistics to enable science to advance more rapidly and with great assurance in the interpretation of experimental results. Over the past three quarters of a century, technology has changed both the practice of science and the practice of statistics. However, the comparative advantage of statistics still rests in the ability to achieve greater precision with fewer errors and a deeper understanding. Examples illustrate some of the challenges that complex science now presents to statisticians, demanding both creativity and technical skills.

History of statistics, complex system models, engineering statistics, metrology, high-dimensional data

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