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4.4 Joint Research Conference on Statistics in Quality, Industry and Technology

Eric S. Lagergren

Raghu N. Kacker

Willam F. Guthrie

Lisa M. Gill

Mark G.  Vangel

Statistical Engineering Division, ITL

Timothy R. C. Read

E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company

The 13th Quality and Productivity Research Conference and the 3rd Spring Research Conference on Statistics in Industry and Technology were held jointly at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, MD from May 29 through May 31, 1996. There were 210 statisticians and engineers that attended this first ever joint meeting. The goal of the conference was to stimulate interdisciplinary research among statisticians, engineers, and physical scientists working in quality and productivity, industrial needs, and the physical and engineering sciences. The conference featured presentations by scientists and engineers for statisticians and presentations by statisticians for scientists and engineers. Statistical issues and research approaches drawn from collaborative research were highlighted.

The program consisted of 3 plenary sessions, 26 invited talks, and 53 contributed talks. Vijay Nair opened the conference with the plenary talk ``Statistics in Industry: Research Opportunities & Challenges", which outlined current research issues and models of collaboration from the author's experience. William Golomski began the second day with the plenary session ``The Needs of Industry, Engineering, & Science for Statistics in the Emerging Millennium" which described critical engineering needs which call for applied statistical research. The conference closed with a plenary panel session on ``Computer Models & Data Interface: Development, Validation, & Inference" led by Rob Easterling. This panel discussed statistical design and analysis issues involved when data are available from both computer models and physical tests.

There were 14 invited sessions focusing on both interdisciplinary collaborations and recent methodological advances useful for engineering applications. The invited sessions were:

Statistical Monitoring of Autocorrelated Processes
Recent Advances in Design & Analysis of Experiments
Statistical Thinking for Business Improvement
Accelerated Testing
Process Capability
Robust Design
Measurement of Particle Size
Response Surface Modeling
Probabilistic Methods in Image Analysis
Exploratory Data Analysis Tutorial
Integrated Circuit Burn-In Issues
Statistics in Information Technology
Statistics at SEMATECH
Statistics in Chemical Engineering

The fourteen contributed sessions focused on topics ranging from Experiment Design and Control Charts in Advanced SPC to Image Analysis and Stochastic Process Optimization. Each contributed session featured four 25 minute talks. Speakers from eight different countries, Canada, Croatia, India, Mexico, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, and the United States, participated in the contributed program giving the conference a true international representation.

A special effort was also made to attract students to the conference by offering a reduced registration fee and grants. Five grants covering registration and lodging were awarded. Funding for these grants was provided by the Quality & Productivity Research Conference Fund of the American Statistical Association (ASA). Twenty five students attended the conference.

The conference was sponsored by the ASA Sections on Physical & Engineering Sciences and Quality & Productivity, the Institute of Mathematical Statistics, E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company, and the National Institute of Standards & Technology. Participants felt that this joint format for the two conferences should be repeated every several years. For more information about this conference, see

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Date created: 7/20/2001
Last updated: 7/20/2001
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