Media Advisory: Social Researchers from Disciplines Spanning the University of Virginia to Meet with Federal Administrators Friday

September 26, 2013

A University of Virginia-wide research retreat on the uses of quantitative methods and “Big Data” in the social, behavioral, economic and policy sciences will be held Friday at the Boar’s Head Inn (schedule below). The conference will feature Peter Miller of the United States Census Bureau’s Center for Adaptive Design; a lunch panel discussion on federal funding opportunities in the social and behavioral sciences; and panel discussions on the latest issues and developments in social and behavioral science research at U.Va.

Panelists include Howard Silver, executive director of the Consortium of Social Science Associations; Erik Herron, program director for social and political science programs at the National Science Foundation; and Robert Kaplan, director of the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research in the National Institutes of Health.

The panel will discuss how, in the face of Washington’s funding crisis, government can continue to support vital research that brings social and behavioral perspectives to problems in the economy, society, the political system and the nation’s health.

The retreat will bring together U.Va. researchers from a variety of disciplines examining health behavior, policy analysis, systems engineering, human factors, planning, nursing, education, marketing, law, business, commerce and “big data.”

Tom Guterbock, director of U.Va.’s Center for Survey Research and a member of the Quantitative Collaborative steering committee, which organized the event, said that during the evening plenary session, which will be held 6:45 to 8:15 p.m., the Census Bureau’s Miller will discuss how the bureau is “working smarter” as funding levels off and costs continue to rise.

“He will explain how the bureau uses advanced analytics and real-time data streams to improve the performance and cost-effectiveness of large, multi-million-dollar government surveys and on the planned 2020 census, which will cost billions to carry out,” Guterbock said.

The event’s schedule:

The Quantitative Collaborative CAFÉ: A Research Retreat

Friday, Boar’s Head Inn

8:30-9 a.m. – Registration and continental breakfast

9-9:30 a.m. – Opening plenary

Greetings from Meredith Woo, dean, College and Graduate School of Arts & Sciences

Introduction to the Quantitative Collaborative – Len Schoppa, associate dean for social sciences, Department of Politics

Purpose of the Research Retreat – Tom Guterbock, director of U.Va.’s Center for Survey Research

9:45 -11 a.m. – Session I: Communicate Research

Concurrent sessions:

- Managing Team Research and Collaborating Across Disciplines

- Multi-method Research

- Communicating Research to Decision-Makers

- Causal Inference in Experimental and Non-Experimental Social Science Research

11-11:15 a.m. – Break

11:15-12:30 p.m. – Session II: Advance Research

Concurrent sessions:

- Replication, Transparency and Sharing Data

- Teaching Statistics to Graduates and Undergraduates

- Advancing Diversity through SBE Quantitative Research

- The Water and Health in Limpopo Project

12:45-2:15 p.m. – Lunch Plenary: “Federal Funding for Social and Behavioral Sciences” - Howard Silver, executive director, Consortium of Social Science Associations

- Erik Herron, program director, National Science Foundation, social and political science programs

- Robert Kaplan, director, Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research, National Institutes of Health

2:15-2:30 p.m. – Break

2:30-4 p.m. – Session III: Finance Research

Breakout groups

- Coalitions Across Discipline, with Howard Silver

- Funding from NSF, with Erik Herron

- Funding from NIH, with Robert Kaplan

- Preparing Grant Proposals at U.Va., with Neal Grandy, Arts & Sciences grants administrator and Angela Sherman, manager of Sponsored Projects Administration, School of Medicine

4-4:15 p.m. – Break

4:15-5:45 pm – Session IV: Enhance Research

Concurrent sessions:

- The Monkey and the Turk: “Do It Yourself” Surveys and Non-Probability Samples

- Big Data, Restricted Data, Patient Data

- Data Access – Issues in Linking, Storing, and Sharing

5:45-6:45 p.m. – Poster Session and Services Fair (wine and cheese reception)

  • 2012 & 2013 Quantitative Collaborative Fellows
    • View research posters from graduate students who received QC fellowships
  • U.Va. services and programs
    • Meet and mingle with representatives from U.Va. centers, research groups, services and instructional programs that deal with quantitative social and behavioral research

6:45-8:15 p.m. – Dinner and plenary speaker Peter Miller, chief of the Center for Survey Measurement, and chief scientist in the bureau’s Center for Adaptive Design on “Adapting in Hard Times: Preserving the Quality of Federal Statistical Data”

  • Closing remarks - Len Schoppa

Media Contact

Fariss Samarrai

University News Associate Office of University Communications