Honorary Fellowship

Honorary Fellowships are awarded to individuals of great eminence working in fields related to statistics who are not necessarily or primarily members of the statistical profession.  Awards should be directed towards nominees who are aligned with the RSS’s charter and values and are likely to actively support the RSS’s strategy.  An Honorary Fellowship is a lifetime award.
A nominee should meet the following criteria:

  • Exemplary contribution to statistics or an adjacent field
  • Commitment to support the RSS and its values
  • Supporter of the wider community
  • An individual respected by peers
  • An individual that would value being an honorary fellow of the Society

The nomination process is, and should remain, confidential. Therefore, nominations should:
  • Detail what exemplary contributions the nominee has made and in which fields
  • Explain how the recipient could support the Society’s strategy and its Charter objectives (see below)
  • Detail how the recipient supports the wider community 

Royal Statistical Society Charter
The objects for which the Society is constituted are the advancement for the benefit of the public of the science of statistics and its application, and the promotion of the use and awareness of statistics; in particular by:
  1. fostering and encouraging the growth, development and application of such science in all areas of activity which can benefit from it;
  2. establishing, upholding and advancing high standards of statistical competence;
  3. fostering the production and publication of statistics on aspects of society;
  4. serving the public interest by acting in an advisory, consultative or representative capacity in matters relating to the science of statistics and its application;
  5. promoting the public understanding of statistics and the competent use and interpretation of statistics.


2023 Honorary Fellowship - Walter Radermacher
Walter Radermacher is elected as an Honorary Fellow in recognition of his dedicated and significant contributions to statistics, and particularly official statistics, internationally. From 1978 to 2008 he held a series of posts at the German Federal Statistics office (DESTATIS), culminating in his position as its President. 

As Director General and Chief Statistician at Eurostat (2008–16) he was responsible for leading work on the promotion and coordination of statistical information from across the European Union, including the implementation of new technologies for data collection, analysis and dissemination. He was also first Chair of the UN Committee of Experts on Environmental-Economic Accounting (UNCEEA) from 2005 to 2008 and a member of OECD’s High-Level Expert Group on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress from 2013 to 2018. His role in encouraging international cooperation in statistics continues to this day as President of FENStatS, the Federation of European National Statistical Societies. 

2020 recipient: Judea Pearl   
Professor Pearl was elected as an honorary fellow in 2020 for his foundational contributions to causal and counterfactual inference based on structural models. In particular, his development of a calculus for causal reasoning has had a profound impact on statistics and artificial intelligence.
2017 recipient: Sir John Curtice
Professor Curtice was awarded an honorary fellowship in 2017 for his pioneering work on understanding voting behaviour and political and social attitudes, in particular as a leading commentator on British politics and his major contributions to the British Social Attitudes survey and British Election study.
2017 recipient: Tim Harford
Honorary fellowship was awarded to Tim Harford, an economist, journalist and broadcaster in 2017, whose major impact on society has concerned presenting and explaining complex statistical and economic issues to the public in an accessible way and holding the media to account in its reporting on statistics and economics.

Nomination form and criteria

Honorary Fellowship nomination form