Covid-19 Task Force

The Royal Statistical Society is supportive of the work of expert statisticians in response to the Covid-19 crisis, and has formed a task force co-chaired by its president Sylvia Richardson and past president David Spiegelhalter, supported by a steering group.

Steering group

Sheila Bird
Simon Briscoe
Daniela De Angelis
Jon Deeks
Peter Diggle
Christl Donnelly
Scott Heald
Chris Holmes
Nicholas Jewell
Guy Nason
Sylvia Richardson (chair)
Jennifer Rogers
David Spiegelhalter (chair)

The task force engages a network of Royal Statistical Society members who are active on Covid-19 and expert in diverse aspects of applied probability and statistics.

The scope for its work is broad, encompassing the design of data collection, diagnostic studies, modelling, forecasting and treatment studies, the enhancement of public understanding, and other areas.

For the Society’s latest Covid-19 policy and research Notices, Correspondence and Resources please visit the ‘latest news’ page. 

RSS members wishing to get involved with the task force are invited to read more about its remit (listed below), and respond to this survey which seeks information on the RSS membership’s research projects and areas of expertise on Covid-19.

You can also contact the task force by emailing


As adopted by the steering group on its formation in April 2020:
  • To support the production of evidence-based analyses
  • To emphasise the importance of fundamental statistical principles and best statistical practice in relation to the analysis of observational data
  • To contribute to the design of future data collection
  • To engage in increasing public understanding of the statistical issues linked to Covid-19.

A key aim of the task force is to ensure that the RSS can contribute its collective expertise to UK national and devolved governments and public bodies, regarding statistical issues during the Covid-19 pandemic.