The topic of this year's Marvin Zelen Symposium has to do with the year itself — 2020. This first year of a new decade brings with it statistical spectacles on a massive scale. From the Decennial Census and the Presidential Election in the US, to the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, to the Summer Olympics in Tokyo. These big events are bristling with data and its analyses — shaping how they are experienced, discussed, debated, and even litigated. Their time scales range from fractions of a second (the difference between gold and silver) to millions of years (the length of the geological record needed to understand our changing climate). They can be influenced by the actions of one person or the cumulative behaviors of hundreds of millions (as voters, as competitors, as spectators, as consumers). The Marvin Zelen Symposium will look at the major data spectacles of 2020, each one having synergy with the others, but also adding something new in our understanding of how data establish and reinforce systems of power on our planet.
- Amanda Cox, New York Times
- Ben Hansen, University of Michigan
- Brendan Nyhan, Dartmouth College
- Regina Nuzzo, Gallaudet University
- Amy O’Hara, Georgetown University
- Andrew Revkin, Columbia University
- Daniel Webb, United States Olympic Committee
- Jeremy White, New York Times
The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute/Frontier Science Technology and Research Foundation Annual Lecture was renamed the Marvin Zelen Memorial Symposium in 2016, in honor of Dr. Zelen's contributions to science and cancer research. Marvin Zelen was known as a giant in the field of biostatistics, as well as a man of vision, generosity, and warmth who served as a mentor to two generations of researchers.