WSS NEWS--News about activities of the Washington Statistical Society - a Chapter of the American Statistical Association

March 1996


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Census Bureau's 1996 Annual Research Conference

Starting on March 17 and continuing until March 21, the Census Bureau will hold the 1996 Annual Research Conference (ARC 1996) and CASIC Technologies Interchange. The conference will consist of a mixture of invited and contributed papers. Most papers will be receive formal discussion at the end of the conference. The focus of ARC 1996 will be on methodologies and technologies for improving surveys and censuses. ARC 1996 will comprise a mix of topics such as on-line dissemination and tabulation of data, small area methods, meta-data collection and dissemination issues and practices, on-line data security issues and practices, human-computer interface issues, methods of testing and evaluating on-line data collection or dissemination applications, and unique data collection applications for methodologies, technologies, and results. A proceedings volume containing all papers and discussions will be published.

To obtain registration material or to be included on the mailing list, contact Maxine Anderson-Brown, Conference Coordinator, Office of the Director, Bureau of the Census, Washington, D.C. 20233, Phone: 301-457-2308; Fax: 301-457-3682.

Data Editing Workshop and Exposition

After the 1996 ARC is over, plan to attend the Data Editing Workshop and Exposition on March 22, 1996. Further details are below.

BLS Statistical Seminar Series on Confidentiality

BLS is sponsoring a seminar series on issues concerning confidentiality of and access to statistical data. Members of the Washington statistical community are invited to attend lectures in this series.

The first set of lectures will pertain to statistical disclosure limitation of tabular data. Jacob Bournazian, EIA, will give a talk on Tuesday, March 5, 10 - 11 am, entitled "Disclosure Avoidance Techniques Used in Petroleum Marketing Data." On Tuesday, April 16, 10-11 am, Robert Jewett, Census Bureau, will discuss "Disclosure Avoidance in Tabular Data at the U.S. Census Bureau." Both lectures will be held at BLS, Room 2990, 2 Massachusetts Avenue, NE. To receive a copy of the abstract or obtain more information, contact Virginia de Wolf (202-606-7374) or send email to

Please note that BLS has special security procedures for non-BLS employees.

Non-BLS staff who want to attend either of these lectures should call or email Ginny de Wolf in order to be placed on the visitor s list. Please provide your name, organization, and date/title of the lecture(s) you want to attend.

Evolution of Digital Delivery

The WSS Electronic distribution is nearly 200 members who receive the newsletter via email a week or more prior to the surface mail newsletter. We hope that we will soon be getting electronic mailing data that will allow us to save a significant amount of postage and printing costs by only sending the newsletter electronically to those who request this option.

If you would like to receive the newsletter by email, please send a note to Vince Massimini ( listing your name, organization, and internet email address. Also, if your email address has changed, please let Vince know. Your messages may be bouncing and he can't get them to you.

And don't forget that WSS is on the World Wide Web! If you haven't stopped by, please do so. You can check current lectures, read the newsletter, look for jobs, hook into other statistical organizations, etc. Many thanks to Dan Rope of BLS who put the page together and Jim Gentle of GMU who is providing the WWW site. The WSS WWW page is at URL if you would like to give it a try. Note that the newsletter is also published on the page --it's the same as the surface or email edition, just a slightly different format.

SIGSTAT Meetings

SIGSTAT, the Special Interest Group in Statistics for the Capitol PC User Group and the Washington Operations Research and Management Science Council (WORMSC), will be sponsoring the following meetings. On March 6, the topic will focus on the SAS/ETS 6.11 Forecasting Menu System. All meetings are from 12:30 - 1:30 in Room B-14, 1301 New York Ave, NW. First time attendees should call Charlie Hallahan at 202-501-6928 and leave their name. Information on SIGSTAT can be obtained on the WWW using the following URL: http://www.ers.usda.govsigstat and on the Members/Sigs page at

Note from the WSS NEWS Editors

Items for the May 1996 WSS NEWS should be submitted no later than March 28, 1996.

Fax items to Mike Feil at (301) 443-4045 or e-mail items to

Data Editing Workshop and Exposition
Washington, D.C.
March 22, 1996

The Data Editing Workshop and Exposition will be held on March 22, 1996, from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. The tentative program consists of approximately 40 presentations and 15 software demonstrations. Contributors from around the United States and abroad, representing federal and state statistical agencies, universities, and private firms, will present on a wide variety of edit-related topics. The venue is the Bureau of Labor Statistics Conference and Training Center, located across the street from Union Station. Over half of the contributors are from outside the Washington, D.C. area, including several from Europe and Canada. The event will be held regardless of federal budget status. For this reason, prior registration is strongly encouraged. If, in the unlikely event of another federal budget crisis, the BLS facility is shut down, a contingency plan will be put into effect. In that case, registrants will be contacted and given necessary information.

Sponsors of the Workshop and Exposition include the Federal Committee on Statistical Methodology (FCSM), the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Joint Program in Survey Methodology, the Washington Statistical Society, the National Agricultural Statistics Service, and the National Center for Educational Statistics.

Presentations are grouped into topic areas including: Approaches to and/or Overview of Editing; Censuses; Neural Networks; Innovations in Data Editing; Computer Editing Systems; Statistical Editing Techniques; Case Studies; and Computer Assisted Interviewing. The software demonstrations are divided evenly between morning and afternoon sessions.

Pre-registration for attendance is heavily encouraged. There is no cost to attend. Pre-registration will ease entry into the building. Attendees are encouraged to arrive early (from 8:00 am) to avoid overwhelming the guards at 9:00. Fill in the following form and send it to David Pierce, Federal Reserve Board, Stop 401, Washington, DC 20551. Use e-mail if you wish: Forms can be faxed to 202-452-6433. For information only, contact Mark Pierzchala, 703-235-5218 or use e-mail at

Registration Form

Joint Research Conference On Statistics In Quality, Industry And Technology

The 13th Quality and Productivity Research Conference and the 3rd Spring Research Conference on Statistics in Industry and Technology will be held jointly at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Gaithersburg, MD from May 29 through May 31, 1996.

The goal of the conference is to stimulate interdisciplinary research among statisticians, engineers, and physical scientists in quality and productivity, industrial needs, and the physical and engineering sciences. The conference will feature presentations by scientists and engineers for statisticians and presentations by statisticians for scientists and engineers. Statistical issues and research approaches drawn from collaborative research will be highlighted.

The technical program of the conference includes sessions addressing statistical issues in chemical engineering, integrated circuit burn in, image analysis, maintenance control for complex machines, materials research, information technology, measurement of particle size, and semiconductor manufacturing. There will also be sessions on process capability, response surface modeling, experiment design, Taguchi robust design, SPC for autocorrelated processes, and reliability. Each invited session will feature discussion from both an applications-oriented point of view and a statistical point of view.

Professor Vijay Nair, from the University of Michigan, and Professor William Golomski, from the University of Chicago Business School, will be plenary speakers. They will discuss broad issues and opportunities in interdisciplinary research from different perspectives.

To round out the technical program, there will be contributed paper sessions on both statistics- and applications-oriented interdisciplinary research problems. Abstracts for the invited and contributed programs will be published in the March/April edition of the IMS Bulletin.

The regular registration fee for the conference is $120.00. The registration fee for students is $60.00.

The registration fee includes coffee breaks, lunch (Wednesday and Thursday), a social mixer, and conference materials. In order for your name to appear on the preliminary participant's list, the registration must be received by May 15, 1996. Requests for cancellations and refunds must also be received, in writing, by this date.

For regularly updated information, see the NIST Statistical Engineering Division WWW Home Page ( For questions about local arrangements (including registration) contact Lisa Gill ( or 301-975-4516). For questions about the invited program, contact either of the conference cochairs, Eric Lagergren ( or 301-975-3245) or Raghu Kacker ( For questions about the contributed program, contact Will Guthrie ( or 301-975-2854).

The conference sponsors are the Section on Physical and Engineering Sciences and the Section on Quality and Productivity of the American Statistical Association, the Institute of Mathematical Statistics, E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

WSS People

President                         Past President                
Ron Fecso   (703) 235-5211        Sue Ahmed  (202) 219-1781       

Phillip Kott  (703) 235-5211

Secretary                          Treasurer
Elizabeth Sweet  (301) 457-4860    Carolyn Shettle  (703) 306-1780

WSS Program Chairs

Agriculture & Natural Resources    Economics
Mike Steiner  (202) 690-2486       Linda Atkinson   (202) 219-0934
Robert Latta  (202) 586-1385       Art Kennickell   (202) 452-2247
Methodology                        Physical Sciences & Engineering     
Sandra West   (202) 606-7384       Paul L. Zador    (301) 294-2825
Julia Bienias (301) 457-4934       
Public Health and Statistics       Quality Assurance                  
Sally Hunsberger (301) 435-0434    Harold Johnson    (202) 606-7758
Julie Legler     (301) 493-6832    Amrut Champaneri  (202) 268-2299

Social & Demographic Statistics    Statistical Computing          
Mike Horrigan    (202) 606-5905    Jim Gentle       (703) 993-1994
Robert Kominski  (301) 457-2120    Mark Pierzchala  (703) 235-5218

Short Courses                      Data Collection Methods     
Glenn White     (202) 327-6414     Theresa DeMaio   (301) 457-4894  
Jeri Mulrow     (202) 327-6414     Mary Grace Kovar (201) 223-6040


Bill Arends          (202) 720-6812                 

WSS NEWS Editors
Mike Feil            (301) 443-1330                 
Alyson Muff          (703) 918-2217                 

Antionette Martin    (202) 254-5409
Renee Miller         (202) 254-5507
Fritz Scheuren       (202) 549-1120

Mel Kollander        (202) 973-2820 

Quantitative Literacy
Shail Butani         (202) 606-6347

Local Arrangement
Robie Sangster       (202) 606-7517