Faculties in Europe

subject area
university status  
Warsaw, Poland

Department of Statistics and Econometrics

Katedra Statystyki i Ekonometrii

Subject area: mathematics and statistics
University website: http://www.wne.uw.edu.pl/en/
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Econometrics is the application of statistical methods to economic data and is described as the branch of economics that aims to give empirical content to economic relations. More precisely, it is "the quantitative analysis of actual economic phenomena based on the concurrent development of theory and observation, related by appropriate methods of inference". An introductory economics textbook describes econometrics as allowing economists "to sift through mountains of data to extract simple relationships". The first known use of the term "econometrics" (in cognate form) was by Polish economist Paweł Ciompa in 1910. Jan Tinbergen is considered by many to be one of the founding fathers of econometrics. Ragnar Frisch is credited with coining the term in the sense in which it is used today.
Statistics is a branch of mathematics dealing with the collection, analysis, interpretation, presentation, and organization of data. In applying statistics to, for example, a scientific, industrial, or social problem, it is conventional to begin with a statistical population or a statistical model process to be studied. Populations can be diverse topics such as "all people living in a country" or "every atom composing a crystal". Statistics deals with all aspects of data including the planning of data collection in terms of the design of surveys and experiments. See glossary of probability and statistics.
Statistics has been the most successful information science.
Those who ignore Statistics are condemned to reinvent it.
Attributed to Bradley Efron by Jerome H. Friedman (April 2001). "The Role of Statistics in the Data Revolution?". International Statistical Review 69: 5-10.
As an econ blogger, I get the sense that this is exactly how many Americans still think of economists--as self-appointed defenders of the free market, spinning theories to show that greed is good. Watching those old Milton Friedman videos, I wonder if that picture might have been accurate in the 1960s and 1970s. But some big things have changed in the field of economics, and America should know about them. Three big changes stand out in particular: Econ today is more data-driven, far less politically conservative, and in general much more like engineering than it used to be.
Noah Smith, "Economists used to be the priests of free markets--now they're just a bunch of engineers," Quartz, May 13, 2014.
Although its evolution in the United States differed markedly from that of applied mathematics, statistics, too, benefited from the presence of the emigres and from the overall war effort. After a protracted period of professional differentiation from the social scientists and from the social sciences, mathematical statisticians had formed their own society, the Institute of Mathematical Statistics (IMS), in 1935. By 1938, the IMS had also taken over responsibility for the Annals of Mathematical Statistics, a journal that had been founded in 1929 to serve the needs of the more mathematically and theoretically inclined statistical practitioners. Thus, when refugees like Neyman, William Feller, Mark Kac, and Abraham Wald took up positions in the United States at Berkeley, Brown, Cornell, and Columbia, respectively, they were able to participate in a young, but viable, community of mathematical statisticians.
Karen Hunger Parshall, "Perspectives on American Mathematics", Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society (2000) 37: 381–405.
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