Latest Advances in the Theory and Applications of Design and Analysis of Experiments (17w5007)

Arriving in Banff, Alberta Sunday, August 6 and departing Friday August 11, 2017

Organizers

(University of California, Los Angeles)

(University of Alberta)

(Ruhr-Universität Bochum)

Objectives

Experimental costs are rapidly rising and research questions must be answered using appropriate statistical techniques to draw the most accurate inference. Design issues are extremely important because a poorly designed study cannot provide valid inferences for the scientific questions of interest or answer these questions with credibility. Every scientific study should therefore be carefully designed by using minimal resources for maximum gain. While great advances in solving statistical estimation problems are continually made, research in design technology has relatively lagged. One reason may be inadequate design training in curriculum in schools, another may be the general lack of emphasis in design in the statistical community; to date, there is not even a dedicated design session at the annual Joint Statistical Meetings, the largest statistical meeting in the world. A third reason is that design problems are generally very difficult technical problems and frequently require many unrealistic assumptions to solve. In North America, there is the Design and Analysis of Experiments conference series held about every two years but the conference is small and cannot accommodate many top researchers together at the same time. The same is true for the MODA conference in Europe, which is held every 2 years that has some emphasis in design. Recently, there seems to be a realization that greater attention should be given to this important subfield in statistics, as is evident by a recent but definitely rare 6-month ‘workshop’ in the Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences in UK at Cambridge in 2011, but much more is needed. The workshop attracted top researchers from over 20 countries, and several new mentorships and collaborations were formed. For example, Wong served as a scientific advisor to the 6-month workshop, and has now 9 papers published from the collaborative work initiated at the workshop. Dette, who was a co-organizer of the workshop, has also now 17 papers resulting from participation in the workshop. Both have continuing work with participants from the workshop and several of them are junior researchers.



The proposed workshop is timely and will promote state-of-the-art research in design by bringing many world experts in one place to exchange ideas, discuss challenging issues and most importantly, expose and groom new and young researchers to work in this important area. The workshop will also have about 12 junior researchers, graduate students and postdoctoral fellows and organizers will help build collaborations between junior and senior researchers by pairing them based on their common research interest. We expect a similar outcome from this workshop where junior researchers will be successfully mentored to carry out state-of-the art research in design. Indeed, Canada has become a noted region of concentration for research both in Robustness of Design and in Computer Experimentation, through the colleagues and former students of D. Wiens and D. Bingham respectively, and the workshop will afford an opportunity to showcase some of this work.



The organizers will plan for several invited talks by senior researchers, short talks by junior researchers and time for sharing of information, identification of open problems and discussion of future directions and challenges in this area. In summary, a BIRS workshop on the theory and applications of design and analysis of experiments in 2017 is timely and will help move the field forward. Judging from initial responses from design experts the world over, 98\% of them responded positively within 24 hours to our email query of their interest and availability. Many also provided names of their students or post-docs for possible participation at the workshop. This confirms that there is tremendous interest in the workshop.