Statisticians Focus on Data Related to Gun Violence at Inaugural Ingram Olkin Forum

Ingram Olkin (1924-2016)

Experienced researchers in gun violence related criminology were invited to attend the Inaugural Statistics Serving Society (S3) Forum to discuss the trends and issues related to the violence of gun use.  Through this Forum they were joined by a variety of statisticians.  In particular the workshop program suggested that there are many problems but not sufficient numbers of involved statisticians. A principal purpose of the Forum is to expose the opportunities and needs for statistical efforts and to engage a substantial number of statisticians to work across disciplinary lines to help in understanding and mitigating the effects of gun violence. The forum involved all researchers in contributing their own part to a better understanding the issues and trends.

View the Photo Album of this event.

Gun violence is a vexing problem in the U.S. which necessarily justifies this scrutiny.  In honor of Ingram Olkin (1924-2016), a principal founder of NISS and an internationally prominent statistician whose work stressed the importance of statistical thinking in studying major societal problems, NISS is proud to be the sponsor of the Ingram Olkin S3 Forums. These Forums are aimed at engaging scientists and stakeholders in addressing the compelling issues facing contemporary society and exploring the roles that statisticians and data scientists can bring to address these issues.

The Forum was broken in to 5 topic areas:

  1. Emerging Data Sources,
  2. Gun Violence Trends,
  3. Policing Gun Violence,
  4. Assessing Gun Violence Risks and Evaluating Initiatives, and
  5. Police Shootings.

Review the original description for this event.

The presenters with "links to their slides" and (presentation recordings) where and for what permission was granted were as follows:

Introductory Forum Comments

James Rosenberger, NISS Director; Allan Sampson, Forum organizing committee; Julia Olkin, daughter of Ingram Olkin.(recording)

Emerging Data Sources

Erica L Smith, (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Department of Justice) - "Department of Justice Statistical Data Collections Related to Gun Violence”. (presentation recording)

Jonathan Lewin, (Chief of the Bureau of Technical Services, Chicago Police Department) - "Chicago Crime Fighting Initiative" (see presentation recording for video used in slides). (presentation recording)

Discussion Leader:  David Banks (Statistical & Applied Mathematical Sciences Institute (SAMSI), Director;Duke University, Profesor, Department of Statistical Science).

Gun Violence Trends

Charles Loeffler, (University of Pennsylvania) - "​Is Gun Violence Contagious?". (presentation recording)

Rick Rosenfeld, (Founders Professor, Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice, University of Missouri-St. Louis) - ​"Gun Homicides and the Impact of the Opioid Epidemic". (presentation recording)

Janet Lauritsen & Ted Lentz, (Curators’ Distinguished Professor, Department of Criminology & Criminal Justice, University of Missouri-St. Louis) - "​National and Local Trends in Serious Violence, Firearm Victimization, and Homicide". (presentation recording)

Discussion Leader:  Tom Belin (Professor, Department of Biostatistics, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health).

Policing Gun Violence

Philip J. Cook, (ITT/Terry Sanford Professor Emeritus of Public Policy Studies, Duke University) - "​Policing Gun Violence: The case for investing in investigations". (presentation recording)

Heike Hofmann, (CSAFE/Iowa, Iowa State University) - "Using Machine Learning to Match Striae Pattern on Land Engraved Areas of Bullets". (presentation recording)

Discussion Leader:  Kimberly Sellers (Associate Professor, Statistics, Department of Mathematics & Statistics, Georgetown University).

Assessing Gun Violence Risks and Evaluating Initiatives

Terry Schell / Andrew Morral, (Senior Scientists, RAND Corporation) - "Justify your model: Identifying the best model assumptions​". (presentation recording)

John MacDonald, (Professor of Criminology and Sociology, University of Pennsylvania) - ​"Place-Based Experiments to Remediate Blighted Vacant Land and Reduce Shootings". (presentation recording)

Yifan Zhang, (Biostatistician, Health Policy, Stanford University) - "The Longitudinal Study of Handgun Ownership and Transfer (LongSHOT)".

Jens Ludwig, (Edwin A. & Betty L. Bergman Distinguished Service Professor, Director of the Chicago Crime Lab, Harris School of Public Policy, University of Chicago) - "Blocking and Tackling". (presentation recording)

Discussion Leader:  Elizabeth Stuart (Associate Dean for Education, Professor, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health).

Police Shootings

David Hemenway, (Department of Health Policy and Management, Chan School of Public Health, Harvard University) - "Law Enforcement Homicides: across states and by rurality". (presentation recording)

Greg Ridgeway, (Department of Criminology, Department of Statistics, University of Pennsylvania) - "​The Role of Individual Officer Characteristics in Police Shootings". (presentation recording)

Discussion Leader:  Lynne Stokes (Professor, Department of Statistical Science, Southern Methodist University).

In addition to NISS, the cooperation and support from the American Statistical Association (ASA), the Statistical and Applied Mathematical Sciences Institute (SAMSI), the David Bohnett Foundation, the Stanford Department of Statistics, the University of Pittsburgh, Department of Statistics, and the Penn State Department of Statistics all helped to make this opportunity possible.

Sunday, June 30, 2019 by Glenn Johnson