2020 Sampling Program for Survey Statisticians Cohort

Andria Nadiradze (Kish Fellow) is a Monitoring and Evaluations Specialist at UNICEF Georgia. He serves as an Emergency Focal Point and Team Leader of UNICEF’s Blood Lead (Pb) Project.  Nadiradze is striving to reduce lead prevalence among children through developing laboratory and environmental health surveillance capacities in Georgia.

“The SPSS has provided me valuable knowledge in every aspect of my data related work. Thanks to the mastery of instructors, the program has equipped me with skills that I am already using to make my projects more efficient, effective and beneficial for the causes I am passionate about.”

Irene Molina (Kish Fellow) came to the United States from Guatemala. She received her undergraduate degree in Mathematics in Guatemala and her Master’s degree in Statistics from The George Washington University.

“The Sampling Program complemented my existing knowledge in survey sampling, which was mainly theoretical, and gave me advanced academic training on topics of Survey Methodology. It also helped me become a more resourceful person for her home country. “

Bruce Sianyeuka (Kish Fellow) is a Demographer/Labour Statistician with the National Statistical Office of Zambia. He has 9 years of experience successfully working on surveys and census data. Sianyeuka strongly believes that timely and reliable data and information are part of the primary solutions to solve most social and economic challenges the developing world is experiencing. He advocates for the adoption of internationally recommended techniques in implementing surveys and censuses. Sianyeuka enjoys long distance bike riding.

“Completing the 2020 sampling program offered me an opportunity to acquire a great deal of knowledge on survey processes and working with complex sample design. It has provided me with a new path in line with my work and career”.

Sihle Khanyille (Kish Fellow) is a Research Statistician for Statistics South Africa.  Khanyille has over 10 year’s experience working in the quarterly employment, short-term economic indicators and statistical standards division. 

“Completing the Sampling Program for Survey Statisticians has provided me with the cognitive tools that enable me to have that requisite abstraction about how the methodological choices we make in practice will impact the quality of our survey estimates, the knowledge has been priceless!.”

Justo A. Manrique Urbina is an accountant with postgraduate studies in Statistics (currently finishing an MSc. Statistics in Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú). A Senior Consultant in the Forensic Integrity Services (ex. Fraud Investigation & Dispute Services) at EY, his professional experience includes working in data analysis for EY’s engagements, preparing reports for audit and forensics clients. On the personal side, Justo lives with his parents and his grandmother and loves playing strategy and open-ended games.

“The Sampling Program has offered me the opportunity to learn from world-class faculty and practitioners. My classmates’ different backgrounds have let me understand how can survey methods be applied to different areas and problems. This has enriched the classes thanks to their comments. “

Louanne Wright, Director of Data Science, has a career focused on data, analytics, and people management. At Nielsen, she supported both the production of data including sample selection, population estimates, and custom weights, as well as the analytics of this data such as custom ratings analysis and model development. She received her education at University of North Florida with a Master’s in Mathematical Sciences, Statistics Concentration.

“The SPSS provided me with increased confidence in my understanding of the theoretical foundations and applications of survey sample design and analysis. The help from professors with connecting the dots to my professional experiences is helping me bring innovation to the business. The program alumni are a new community that I am elated to support and cherish for many years to come.”

Imen Mezlini (Kish Fellow), a graduate of the High Institute of International Commerce – IHEC Carthage, pursued studies in marketing and management.  She is a research coordinator and a cofounder of a survey firm, with over 10 years of experience in surveys, moderating focus groups and in-depth interviews. Her field of expertise includes opinion polls and consumer behavior research. Mezlini manages and co-manages the Arab Barometer and Afrobarometer, regional projects in North Africa. She has managed surveys for national and international organizations, universities and private companies. Mezlini currently manages a team of data analysts, working hand in hand with the fieldwork and the control departments.

“I attended the seventy-third Summer Institute in survey research techniques at the University of Michigan.  The experience was very enriching at all levels. I joined the program because I wanted to perfect my knowledge in sampling methods in order to learn more about the drawing of samples and the choice of techniques appropriate to the needs of her clients. Also, I wanted to opt for this training in order to put theory more in favor of practice. Actually, after the end of the program, I can say that I was able to achieve my goal. Through the courses and the workshop I learned new concepts in sampling that could help me in both improving the quality of the surveys’ firm and better negotiating with clients and partners when they discuss issues related to sampling. In addition, I appreciated in the program is the interventions by visitors, who came to share their knowledge and experiences with the students. This allowed her to see the concrete aspect and to try to bring it closer to her field of work. Finally I was pleased to participate in this program, and grateful to all the teachers and the organizers who have made great efforts to make of this program version a success.”

Guilherme Jacob (Kish Fellow) is a Brazilian data analyst, with B.Sc. in Economics and Bachelor of Law. He is currently pursuing a Masters in Population, Territory and Official Statistics at the National School of Statistical Sciences in Brazil. 

The Sampling Program for Survey Statisticians is an amazing opportunity, combining theoretical explorations in both survey sampling and complex survey data analysis with hands-on experience with experienced statisticians in a variety of contexts. Adding to this already great experience, the exchange with colleagues from other countries, with varied work and university backgrounds.

During the Survey Workshop, Professor James Lepkowski accompanied every step of the survey design, sharing his experiences of how problems that appear on the field can be prevented or dealt with in both fieldwork and analysis step.

In both the Survey Workshop and Survey Methods courses, Professor Raphael Nishimura combines theoretical and applied knowledge, providing solid understanding of the intricate mathematics of survey sampling with minimal mathematical notation. Professor Sunghee Lee patiently solved and discussed several problems and examples, providing important feedback to our comprehension of the course. While there are range of topics in the course, Professor Ai Rene Ong was supportive and her solutions, feedback and continuous engagement were very helpful.

The Analysis of Complex Survey Data course was just as good. Professor Brady West and Professor Yajuan Si provide several examples of analysis with different datasets and many of the current software, adding a hands-on learning to the theoretical discussions of the course. Professor West is also one of the authors of the main handbook and it was a great opportunity to ask about the topics of the book and the new developments in the field of complex survey data analysis since the second edition.

The series of Workshops were truly unique. Many experienced researchers from around the world shared their expertise on diverse topics regarding Survey Sampling, such as Multiplicity Sampling, Grid Sampling, Census Planning Database, even state-of-the-art developments like Non-probability samples. All professors provided excellent theoretical exposition with practical examples. I highlight Professors Steven Heeringa’s presentation, which gave an outstanding history of survey sampling, from the early works in the 1800’s to nowadays Big Data.

I was very pleased with the Sampling Program and it completely changed my understanding of the field. It provided me with solid understanding about the many methods used in survey sampling and analysis, and the ability to correctly analyze an enormous range of datasets in an equally diverse range of topics. I cannot emphasize this enough: if you are interested in learning how survey sampling is done, the Survey Program for Survey Statisticians is one of the best ways to do it.”

Eman Taha Hassan Mohammed (Kish Fellow) graduated from the Faculty of Economics and Political Science, Cairo University, Department of Economics in 2001, received a Higher Diploma in Statistics in 2008, obtained a Master’s Degree in Statistics in 2012 and a Ph.D. in Household Surveys in 2018. 

She works at the Sampling Department in the Egyptian National Office of Statistics; Central Agency for Mobilization and Public Statistics (CAPMAS). Her responsibilities include designing samples of main household surveys, conducting sampling weights at different adjustment phases, giving technical support, and assisting experts in their tasks. 

“This program provided me a lot of information and knowledge that I did not have before. In addition, it enhanced the information and the knowledge I already have.  Workshops were so invaluable, I utilized a lot from different experts with different great topics, and those workshops raised many modern issues in sampling theoretically and practically. Most of the course 614 topics were new for me. Also, course 625 improved my previous knowledge of sampling design.” 

Moeki Kurita is enrolled in the Master of Applied Statistics Program at the University of Michigan. He is a Senior Project Coordinator for the Nippon Foundation in Japan and has been involved in implementing educational programs for disadvantaged children across Japan and data collection to evaluate their effectiveness.

“This program has provided me with a solid foundation in sample methodology and analytics, as well as direct instruction from many practitioners in various countries. I believe it will be of great use to me after graduation in my work on social issues in my home country and internationally.”

Mona Pathak (Kish Fellow) received a Masters and PhD in Biostatistics.  Her work as a Research Faculty at the Kalinga institute of Medical Sciences, Bhubaneswar, India, involves planning research studies for postgraduates as well as faculties, data analysis, interpreting the research findings and critical appraisal. She has been involved in designing surveys along with interventional as well as observational studies.

“The Sampling Program for Survey Statisticians 2020 has provided an opportunity to learn planning, data analysis and interpretation of complex surveys.  This program offered two courses named as “Methods of Survey Sampling” and “Analysis of Complex Sample Survey Data” along with a series of workshops with hands on training on very practical aspects pertaining to different types of sampling designs including complex sampling such as multiple frame sampling, multiplicity sampling, Grid sampling; census and Big data. The workshop has involved the very learned speakers, which have worked with planning and conducting big surveys in different countries. Methods of Survey Sampling course offered very simplified way to design a survey including, principals of sample collection, choice of sampling methodology, calculating the sample size for different design and estimation of standard errors. The course on analysis of complex survey data offered me the aspect, which is highly useful for me as I am more involved in data analysis of survey data. This course offered the practical aspects of descriptive data analysis for complex surveys, use of appropriate weights, and regression analysis for complex surveys and most importantly the interpretation of such results. Overall, it is a very dense program, which should ideally be a semester long program. Knowledge gained from this program amended my way of planning, data analysis of surveys as well as teaching survey methodology. I was very privileged to participate in this program and I am very thankful” for caring teachers, who are available to clear my doubts related to program even out of the class.”

Nancy Chin is employed with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization from 2010-2016 and 2019-2020 as the Regional Statistician for Near East and North Africa Region. Her work involves capacity development with countries and management of projects on agriculture census and surveys, such as the AGRIS method.  She received a PhD from University of London, University College London, Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, Spatial Statistics and Geospatial Science.

Stephano Cosmas (Kish Fellow) has been working in the Department of Social and Demographic Statistics under the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), Tanzania for more than six years. The Tanzania Bureau of Statistics – is the key institution in carrying out Census and Surveys and producing official statistics in Tanzania.   He has a Master’s Degree in Statistics with specialization in Biostatistics from the University of Hassell, Belgium.

Harriet Namukoko (Kish Fellows) isa Senior Statistician at the Zambia Statistics Agency, formerly Central Statistical Office. She has been with the institution for almost ten years. The main duties in her course of work includes: development of survey instruments and protocols; coordination of fieldwork; data analysis; and report writing. She has also, been part of the technical team that has implemented household based surveys and censuses such as the Zambia Demographic and Health Surveys (2018 and 2013-14), 2017 Saving Mothers Giving Life Endline Census, 2016 Zambia Population-Based HIV Impact Assessment Survey, 2015 National Disability Survey, 2011 Post Enumeration Survey and the 2010 Census of Population and Housing.  Harriet has Master of Public Health in Population Studies at the University of Zambia.

Dixi Paginawan (Kish Fellows) currently a Remote Statistician for NuStats LLC, a research firm currently based in Buda  rexas USA. I have been a contractor for Nustats since 2016. As a remote Statistician, I am in charge in the sampling design in the firm\’s several survey project. Some of the projects she has handled were City of Santa Monica Household Travel Survey and Aging Services Council Community Survey. Dixi is also in charge of calculating the sampling weights as well as analysis of the survey data.  She has a Masters of Statistics at the University of the Philippines.