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Lahore ISOSS Conference Emphasises on Increased Strategic Role of Statisticians

 

The 8th International Conference on Recent Advances in Statistics: “Statistics, Biostatistics and Econometrics” was held on February 8-9, 2011 at National College of Business Administration and Economics (NCBA&E), Lahore, Pakistan. The conference was organised by the Islamic Countries Society of Statistical Sciences (ISOSS) in collaboration with the NCBA&E in honour of ISOSS President, Dr Shahjahan Khan for his outstanding contribution in leading ISOSS as an international professional organisation of statisticians through organisation of a number of international conferences and promoting statistics globally.

 

 

Lahore ISOSS Conference 2011

Opening session (from left) Dr Abdul Ghapor Hussin (Malaysia), Dr Munir Ahmed (Pakistan), Mian Shamim Haidar (former minister of Pakistan), Dr Shahjahan Khan (Australia), and Dr Ahmed A Bahnassy (Saudi Arabia).

 

Delegates from various countries of Australia, Europe, Middle East, South Asia and USA presented their recent research outputs in diverse areas of statistics. A total 320 participants from Pakistan and other countries took part in the conference deliberations. In various scientific sessions 142 research papers were presented highlighting recent advances in statistics, biostatistics and econometrics. Unfortunately, many Western participants were unable to present their submitted papers due to travel restrictions to Pakistan. A large number of statisticians who could not join the conference sent their messages of appreciation emphasising the great contributions of Dr Shahjahan Khan.

 

 

Mian Shamim Haider, a former Federal Minister of Railways and Sports, Government of Pakistan inaugurated the conference as the chief guest. He emphasized on the use of Statistics in Planning and Development of Pakistan and how high-tech industries can be established in Pakistan by importing latest statistical techniques and developing new indigenous technologies based on recent advances in Pakistan. The founding President of ISOSS Dr Munir Ahmad and Vice-President of ISOSS Dr Mohammad Hanif Mian spoke in the opening session. All the speakers highly spoke of the groundbreaking work of Dr Shahjahan Khan, and the chief guest presented a crest to him to mark his remarkable contributions to the promotion and development of statistics.

 

Lahore ISOSS Conference 2011

Dr Munir Ahmed (left), former Minister Mian Shamim Haidar presenting the crest of honour to Dr Shahjahan Khan, University of Southern Queensland, Australia

 

In his address of honour Dr Shahjahan Khan highlighted how the perception of statistics has changed from a mere tool of calculation of numbers to making decisions in the face of uncertainly and taking the role of strategists for government and business. He emphasised more visible and dominant presence of statistics to the solution of complex issues the humanity faces today. Statisticians are uniquely positioned to contribute significantly in addressing the burning problems of our time. Statistics has come up with solutions to many problems where other disciplines have failed.

 

One of the main attractions of the conference was to officially open the ISOSS House which has been recently constructed by ISOSS. The participants reflected on the dream of the founding President of ISOSS, Dr Munir Ahmad, and thanked everyone who contributed to the project financially and otherwise. The office of ISOSS has now been shifted to the ISOSS House and it has facilities for offices, library, computer lab, training and meeting rooms etc. In the next phase of the project, ISOSS plans to build facilities to accommodate visiting scientists and research workers to promote excellence in statistical teaching, learning and collaborative research.

 

The Business Session of the conference recommended unanimously that in Pakistan the National Statistical Council must be revived, the recently created Pakistan Bureau of Statistics should be properly manned by qualified statistical scientists, Pakistan should take necessary steps to meet the requirements for becoming a statistically advanced country, the  Government must work on international bodies particularly in the UNO, UNDP etc. for inviting local statistical experts by other countries as advisors, establish Statistical Research Station in each province for the discovery of new knowledge and development of new techniques, conduct micro-censuses at every alternative year for the updating of population growth, and address an immediate need of an International Journal of Official Statistics.

 

Reposted by Dr Munir Ahmed, Founding President of ISOSS