Section History

Formed in 1954, the object of the American Statistical Association's Section on Statistics in the Physical and Engineering Sciences (SPES) is to develop and apply statistical techniques in the physical and engineering sciences.  The section offers many benefits, including:

  • Organizes invited and contributed sessions, short courses, roundtable discussions, and a section mixer at the annual meetings
  • Publishes proceedings from the annual meetings, including Spring Research Conference and Fall Technical Conference papers
  • Sponsors the Best Presenter Award Program for outstanding contributed papers in the SPES sessions at the annual meetings
  • Co-sponsors Fall Technical and Spring Research conferences
  • Provides on-line information via the SPES WWW page and monthly news items in the Amstat News
  • Produces biannual SPES/Q&P News newsletter
  • Offers an Industrial Speaker Program, the SPES Marquardt Memorial Industrial Speakers Program
  • Sponsors a Chemometrics Committee
The mission/objectives of SPES are to:
  • Promote application and appropriate use of statistical thinking, practices, and techniques in the physical and engineering sciences
  • Encourage and/or participate in developing (or adapting) statistical practices and techniques suited to the physical and engineering sciences
  • Support the growth and development of section members
  • Promote the exchange of information among and between statisticians and scientists/engineers concerning statistical problems (solved or unsolved) arising in the physical and engineering sciences
The SPES strategy for achieving its mission includes:
  • Sponsoring (or co-sponsoring with other organizations) technical conferences or sessions at technical conferences
  • Sponsoring (or co-sponsoring with other organizations) workshops, short courses, industrial-university interactions, and other educational programs
  • Publishing an annual proceedings volume open to papers presented at any of the conferences sponsored by SPES during the year
  • Publishing a newsletter and SPES columns in the AMSTAT NEWS magazine, and maintaining a WWW site to keep section members informed about SPES and its activities
  • Supporting financially or in other ways organizations or activities of benefit to section members and the statistical profession
  • Interacting with engineers and scientists in the physical and engineering sciences via focused committees or special interest groups (e.g., Chemometrics Committee) and liaisons with other technical societies or journals
  • Developing and maintaining an section operating manual to help current and future officers and committee chairs perform their duties and conduct section business in an efficient manner
SPES Website History:
Dick Deveaux made the first version of the SPES website in the mid-`90′s. Randy Tobias took it over and nursed along using direct HTML programming until 2011, when it was revamped with the help of Anthony Morgan to become the current version.