The RSS is one of six international statistics organisations to present Andreas Georgiou with a special commendation recognising his work at the Greek statistical authority Elstat.
The commendation was given to the former Elstat president ‘for his competency and strength in the face of adversity, his commitment to the production of quality and trustworthiness of official statistics and his advocacy for the improvement, integrity and independence of official statistics’. It was presented to Georgiou personally at a meeting just prior to the International Association for Official Statistics (IAOS) Conference in Paris earlier this month.
During his Elstat presidency, Andreas Georgiou committed himself to ensuring that the production of all official statistics in Greece should be undertaken in strict conformity with the UN Fundamental Principles of Official Statistics and the European Statistics Code of Practice. However, the citation notes, ‘he was subjected to continuing inappropriate efforts to influence the coverage and content of certain politically sensitive statistical releases, in contravention of the principle of professional independence.’
In 2013 then-RSS president John Pullinger wrote to the Greek president urging a a letter asking that the Greek authorities halt any further prosecutions against him.
Other statistical organisations behind this year’s commendation are: International Statistical Institute (ISI), American Statistical Association (ASA) International Association for Official Statistics (IAOS), Federation of European National Statistical Societies (FENStatS) and Société Française de Statistique (SFdS). Other societies and organisation are invited to sign in support of this commendation.
Georgiou said he was deeply honoured by the commendation and grateful for the support he has received from the international community. ‘This commendation is an important signal to all statisticians in the world who are fighting for independence and integrity of statistics, that they are not alone,’ he added.
The presentation was made during a special meeting titled: ‘National Statistical Offices’ Professional Independence: Threats and Responses’, where 75 senior statisticians from around the world discussed cases where the independence of statistics has been or are at stake, like Argentina, Kazakhstan and Puerto Rico. The conclusion was that the role of the international community in addressing these issues is very important.
Photo shows Andreas Georgiou being presented with his commendation by ISI president-elect John Bailer, reproduced with permission from ISI.