How to not make a fool of yourself with statistics

  • Event: 2015 CAR Conference
  • Speakers: Rob Barry of The Wall Street Journal; Holly Hacker of The Dallas Morning News; Jaxk Reeves of University of Georgia; John Perry of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
  • Date/Time: Saturday, Mar. 7 at 4:30pm
  • Location: International 8-9
  • Audio file: Only members can listen to conference audio

*Moderated by John Perry, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Advanced statistics provides powerful tools for finding stories in a piles of data. But with greater power come greater responsibility. And when journalists venture beyond simple descriptive statistics, they are entering a jungle wilderness where you can become easily lost or succumb to hidden dangers. This panel will tell you how to recognize and avoid the dangers, and how to find the proper guide.

Speaker Bios

  • Rob Barry helps lead The Wall Street Journal's investigative data team. Recently, he has reported on topics including nation-state hacking and influence operations, the Trump administration, narcotics trafficking and terrorist financing. @rob_barry

  • Holly Hacker is an investigative reporter at The Dallas Morning News. She worked in the IRE/NICAR Data Library while earning her master's degree at the Missouri School of Journalism. She was part of the team that won the 2007 Philip Meyer Award for exposing cheating on standardized tests in Texas. @hollyhacker

  • John Perry is technical director of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s data journalism team. He came to the AJC in January 2008. As a member of the investigative team, he helped uncover wide-spread cheating on state tests in the Atlanta Public Schools. Before coming to Atlanta, Perry was a senior fellow at the non-profit investigative journalism organization, The Center for Public Integrity and database editor at The Oklahoman, the newspaper in Oklahoma City.

  • Jaxk Reeves received his BS in Mathematics from MIT in 1977 and his PhD in Statistics from UC Berkeley in 1982. He has spent his entire professional career as a faculty member in the Statistics Department at the University of Georgia. Jaxk has been associated with the Statistical Consulting Center at UGA since its inception in 1990, and has been its Director for the past 9 years. Some of the projects the Center works on, such as detecting cheating on standardized tests, involves work with the media.

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