SSC Award for Impact of Applied and Collaborative Work Committee

Continuing committee


Shelley Bull - (Chair)
Francis Zwiers
Carl Schwarz

Terms of Reference


The SSC Award for Impact of Applied and Collaborative Work was established at a meeting of the Board of Directors on 10 June 2007, and amended on 25 May 2008. The Committee was created as a continuing independent committee at the Board meeting held on 23 October 2010.


Chair: Appointed by the incoming President.
Membership: Two additional members in good standing, appointed by the incoming President.

Terms and Duties:


To recognize outstanding contributions by SSC members in collaborative research and applied work, the importance of which derives primarily from its relatively recent impact on a subject area outside of the statistical sciences, on an area of application, or on an organization.


The award could be for published collaborative research, for collaboration in applied work (whether published or not) or, more generally, for the impact of a statistician on an organization (e.g., a company or a government agency) or a subject-area through their collaborative or applied work. It could be for a recent single piece of work, or for a body of work where the researcher is continuing to have an impact through recent contributions. Also, a body of work, the impact of which has only recently become apparent, would also be considered.


The essential idea is that the award is for the impact of the work (not for its degree of technical sophistication, for example). The work should demonstrate the importance of the statistical sciences to other areas of endeavour, and should include an intellectual contribution to statistical science motivated by the area of application.

Areas in which a substantial contribution would qualify include:

  • Formulation of new statistical questions and ideas uniquely appropriate to the subject matter discipline or the organization.
  • Development and application of conceptually new approaches appropriate to the subject matter or the organization.
  • New implementation of the best combination of techniques to solve important and difficult research problems in the applied discipline.
  • Development of statistical methods that answer a question in another field that could not have been answered adequately before.
  • Application of creative statistical thinking with demonstration of clear understanding of the science/industry of the area of endeavour.
  • Establishment of the relative merits of alternative analytic approaches leading to guidelines useful to applied scientists in choosing among them.

    This list is intended to be examples of contributions and is not necessarily exhaustive.


Any member of the SSC.


Any person or group can make nominations. The onus would be on the nominator(s) to explain the work and to provide evidence of its impact in support of the nomination.

The nomination package should consist of a letter of nomination and at least three letters of support, a CV, a “layperson” description of the work and its impact expressed in terms that would be suitable for publicity purposes, and a citation suitable for public announcement of the award. It is essential that the letters address the criteria for the award. The nomination package should include at least two letters from nonstatisticians representing the field or organization that has felt the impact of the work. The letters should address how the contributions have had a recent impact. Letters of recommendation from those not directly involved in the research are particularly encouraged.

Nominations are to be made by a specified and well-advertised deadline, e.g., February 1. The SSC Award for Impact of Applied and Collaborative Work Committee shall call in Liaison for nominations for the awards, and shall report its decisions to the President by March 31; ratification of the decisions shall be made by the Executive Committee by April 30, in time for the recipients to be alerted to receive the award at the Banquet held in conjunction with the SSC Annual Meeting. A short citation, based on that provided with the nomination and submitted by the SSC Award for Impact of Applied and Collaborative Work Committee shall accompany each award.

Award nominations shall be solicited annually, but if no meritorious candidate is found, an award need not be made every year.

At most one award shall be awarded per year. Nominations for the Award should be considered valid for three award competitions unless withdrawn by the nominators. Nominators of unsuccessful candidates should be asked to add, replace or update recent contributions related to the award criteria, changes to biographical information and updated letters of reference as appropriate.

The Committee will make a recommendation to the SSC Executive as to how the Award will be given public recognition. Examples include, inviting the recipient to present the work or to organize an invited session that highlights the impact of the work at the Annual Meetings in the year following the year of the award. In this case, any special budgetary considerations for such a session need to be considered by the Executive and the results of its deliberations will be passed on to the Program and Local Arrangements Chairs.

Please see the SSC guidelines on implicit bias (pdf).


A certificate, suitably inscribed and framed, to be presented at the SSC Annual Meeting banquet together with the other major SSC awards.