Statistics under Pressure around the World - Hetan Shah

Dear colleagues, 


We would like to share with you Hetan Shah's comment piece on how the production of independent statistics is coming under pressure around the world, which was recently published in the Financial Times.


Professional independence is a subject of utmost importance for official statistics and, as many of you may know, IAOS prior to its 16th International Conference in Paris, France (19-21 September 2018), organised a full day meeting to highlight it: "NSOs Professional Independence: Threats and Responses"


Hetan Shah is Executive Director of the Royal Statistical Society (RSS). You can read his comment piece below or at

Special Meeting on NSOs Professional Independence - Download the programme and presentations!



Prior to the 2018 IAOS-OECD Conference “Better Statistics for Better Lives” that took place on 19-21 September 2018 in Paris, France, the International Association for Official Statistics (IAOS) organised a Special Meeting on “NSOs Professional Independence: Threats and Responses”.


This Special Meeting discussed at a high level the challenges to the independence of Official Statistics by analysing concrete cases, governance arrangements and the role of the international statistical community. The meeting consisted on three main sessions and a book presentation by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB):



Session 1 - The Challenges to the Independence of Official Statistics: Some concrete cases.


Chair: Jean-Louis Bodin (France) - Presentation



Jorge Todesca (Argentina) - Presentation

Eric Rancourt (Canada) - Presentation

Andreas Georgiou (Greece)

Petteri Baer (Presenting the case of Anar Meshimbayeva from Kazakhztan) - Presentation



Session 2 - Institutional Governance and Support to Statistical Independence


Chair: Stefan Scheweinfest (UNSD)



John Pullinger (UK)

Mario Palma (Mexico) - Presentation

Olav Ljones (Norway) - Presentation



Book Presentation - Who cares to know? The Political Economy of Statistical Capacity 


Jose Antonio Mejía (IDB) - Presentation



Session 3 - Discussion: The Role of the International Statistical Community


Moderator: Hermann Habermann (USA) - Questions for Discussion

Rapporteur: Hallgrímur Snorrason (Iceland)



Photos taken during the event can be found in: 

Join the 2018 IAOS General Assembly!





2018 General Assembly Meeting


Thursday, 20 September 2018


OECD Conference Centre

Time: 18:00 - 19:00


The International Association for Official Statistics (IAOS) is pleased to invite you to attend the 2018 IAOS General Assembly Meeting that will be held on Thursday, 20 September 2018 at the OECD Conference Centre (2 rue André Pascal, Paris 75016) from 18:00-19:00 hours.


This year’s General Assembly will focus on what the role of IAOS should be to support Official Statisticians in times of challenge or threat. It will discuss potential mechanisms through which our association could assist in cases where the professional independence of NSOs and official statisticians is threatened. The meeting will also inform IAOS members of the activities and achievements of IAOS during 2017.




  • Welcoming words Mario Palma Rojo (IAOS President 2017-2019)
  • Statistical Journal of the IAOS (SJIAOS) Status Report – Kirsten West (Editor-in-chief)
  • 2018 Young Statisticians Prize (YSP) Report – Gemma Van Halderen (EXCO member)
  • Conclusions


Please note, this General Assembly will be held as part of the 2018 IAOS-OECD Conference that will take place from 19-21 September 2018 in Paris, France. For more information about the conference, its programme and registration, please visit:


According to IAOS Statutes: The General Assembly is composed of the individual members, and one designated member from each institution which is a member. Each individual member shall have one vote. The decisions of the General Assembly are taken by simple majority of the votes cast at a meeting or by electronic means except as otherwise stated by the Statutes. Votes expressed electronically shall be considered as valid as votes in person at the General Assembly. Proxy voting is only allowed in the procedure for changing the statutes.


If you cannot attend, please let us know your comments to any item of the General Assembly by sending us a message to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Commendation of Andreas Georgiou at IAOS Special Meeting

Andreas Georgiou (Former President of ELSTAT) and Ada van Krimpen (ISI Director).



On 18 September 2018, during the IAOS Special Meeting on "National Statistical Offices’ Professional Independence: Threats and Responses" immediately prior to the 16th  IAOS-OECD  Conference in Paris, a special Commendation was awarded to Andreas Georgiou, former and inaugural President of ELSTAT (the Greek Statistical Authority).


This Commendation was given to acknowledge Andreas Georgiou's upholding of the highest professional standards in his public service in the pursuit of integrity of statistical systems, and it was presented to him by the following major statistical organisations: 


  • The International Statistical Institute (ISI)
  • The Royal Statistical Society (RSS)
  • The American Statistical Association (ASA)
  • The International Association for Official Statistics (IAOS)
  • The Federation of European NAtional Statistical Societies (FENStatS)
  • The Société Francaise de Statistique (SFdS)


Link to the complete ISI Media Release:



For more pictures of this Special Meeting, please visit:

Vacancy for SJIAOS Editor-in-Chief



Our current SJIAOS Editor-in-Chief Dr Kirsten West, is standing down from August 2019.  We would like to acknowledge Kirsten’s outstanding work in leading our Journal for the past few years.


Expressions of interest are now being called for the position of Editor-in-Chief.  The new appointee is expected to be in place by January 1st, 2019, to allow a period of transition.


The role is unpaid, but provides travelling expenses to attend international events such as IAOS and ISI conferences.  It also offers the opportunity to engage in very challenging and interesting work close to the international statistical community.


Expressions of interest close 30 September, 2018. See here for more information.