Seminar Details

Seminar Details


Feb 5

3:30 pm

Chemometrics and Statistical Thinking

Nicolaas Faber


University of Washington - Center for Process Analytic Chemistry

Chemometrics is a subdiscipline of chemistry that deals with such diverse activities as the planning of experiments, laboratory management and data analysis. Especially when it comes to data analysis, methods from mathematics, statistics and computer science become very important. In this seminar I will try to focus on questions like "how well do the chemists manage in incorporating statistical thinking in their work?", "do we really need statistical rigor for solving our problems?" and "how well do chemists and statisticians get along?". The latter question is important, since related fields have been under severe criticism from statisticians. The well-known psychometrician Thurstone (from factor analysis) once put it this way: "Let us also not forget a simple principle that every scientist takes for granted, namely, that he would rather measure something significant without any sampling distribution than to measure something trivial or irrelevant because its sampling distribution is known."