The 7th Conference on the Use of R in Official Statistics

Tudorel Andrei
President of National Institute of Statistics (Romania)

It was a great pleasure for me and also for my colleagues from Romanian NIS to host this year The 7th Conference on the Use of R in Official Statistics
The subject of the event was crucial for our organisations not only for the near future but also for the present. I think that finding the right tools to harness the potential of smart statistics and big data is essential to push the modernization process in a globalized world and a digital society.
The former director general of Eurostat pointed out that “statistics is the science of learning from data” but I would also like to underline that statistics measures life. Therefore, it is crucial for us to use new data sources and new metrics to capture the reality and to transform it into numbers.
In this respect, for our organisations it is mandatory to identify new data sources in private and public sectors. Most of the data sources are held by private entities that are profit – driven. In this condition, for us it is important to find a common ground to combine our forces for the betterment of the society. Our brand is a great advantage in this game. Also it is important to create viable partnerships with the other organisations within the public sector that result in common databases. Official statistics can be an efficient instrument to modernise national public administrations by bringing together its main actors. This way costs in official statistics and bureaucracy in public administration can be reduced.
The instruments that official statistics uses have to adapt to the new reality that is emerging. One must note that today we produce more data than we can process and classical instruments are no longer suitable. Traditionally official statistics used estimation, inference and study design. Using big data and smart statistics we no longer need sampling because we can use entire data sets. There is an abundance of sources that can be used: mobile phone data, social media data, scanner data.

Romanian Statistical Review 3/2019