Florence Nightingale Lecture

Florence Nightingale Lecture

Date: Tuesday 01 December 2020, 3.00PM
Location: Online
Online - joining instructions will be sent to those registered shortly before the event
RSS Event

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3.00 pm   Florence Nightingale Bicentenary Lecture: Florence Nightingale and the politicians’ pigeon holes: using data for the good of society

Speaker:  Professor Deborah Ashby, President of the RSS

4.00 pm   Short break

4.15 pm   Panel Session about the role of statistics in society

Panel members:

Professor Deborah Ashby OBE FMedSci,

Professor Sir David Cox FRS Hon FBA Hon FRSE and

Professor Sir David Spiegelhalter OBE FRS

Panel Chair: Professor Jen Rogers, RSS Vice-president for external affairs and the head of statistical research at PHASTAR


Title:         Florence Nightingale and the politicians’ pigeon holes: using data for the good of society

Abstract: Florence Nightingale, best known as the Lady with the Lamp, is recognised as a pioneering and passionate statistician. She was also passionate about education, having  argued successfully with her parents to be allowed to study mathematics, and later nursing, herself.  More widely, she offered opinions on the education of children, soldiers, army doctors, and nurses, as well as railing against the ‘enforced idleness’ of women. A particular concern was the lack of statistical literacy among politicians. As we celebrate the bicentenary of her birth, the need for education in statistical and data skills shows no signs of abating. What advice would Florence Nightingale offer were she here today?


Speaker:  Professor Deborah Ashby, President of the RSS

Bio:           Deborah Ashby is Director of the School of Public Health at Imperial College London where she holds the Chair in Medical Statistics and Clinical Trials, and was Founding Co-Director of Imperial Clinical Trials Unit. She is a Chartered Statistician and her research interests are in clinical trials, risk-benefit decision making for medicines, and the utility of Bayesian approaches in these areas. She has sat on the UK Commission on Human Medicines and acts as adviser to the European Medicines Agency. Deborah was awarded the OBE for services to medicine in 2009, appointed an NIHR Senior Investigator in 2010, and elected a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 2012. She is currently President of the Royal Statistical Society.

Department of Statistics, University of Oxford
Contact: Beverley Lane

This event is generously sponsored by XTX Markets in partnership with the Royal Statistical Society.
Free but registration required.