Free access to special issue remembering George Box


  • Author: Statistics Views
  • Date: 28 February 2014
  • Copyright: Image © Brent Nicastro

The first issue of the year for Applied Stochastics Models in Business and Industry is a special issue dedicated in memory to the late George Box who died last March. All articles within this special issue are available to read for free.

The issue is edited by Box's former student, Professor Bovas Abraham, who wrote an obituary on Box for Statistics Views at the time of his death and Professor David Steinberg. In their introduction to the special issue, they write, 'George Box was remarkable for both the breadth and the depth of his ideas. He made path-breaking contributions in several areas, including design of experiments, Bayesian statistics, time series, process control and quality improvement. He introduced many innovative ideas, including response surface methodology and evolutionary operation, Box–Cox transformations and Box–Jenkins methods for time series. He coined important terms such as ‘robustness’. However, perhaps his greatest contribution to the discipline has been his philosophical perspective of statistics as an integral component of scientific inquiry—the tangible essence of an iterative learning process. To George Box, statistical tools and methods provide the logic and the language of the modern scientific method, and the proper study of statistics must be rooted in scientific inquiry. He once commented ‘The quality movement can be seen as the analysis, institutionalization and democratization of Scientific Method, a tool for efficiently generating new knowledge.' (Bovas & Abraham, 'George E. P. Box (1919–2013)', Applied Stochastic Models in Business and Industry, Vol. 30, Issue 1, p1).

thumbnail image: Free access to special issue remembering George Box

This special issue commemorates George Box's remarkable achievements in statistics. The articles that have been here assembled summarize and provide perspective on Box's ideas and his innovative research, as well as on his fascinating career path. Exclusively included within this special isssue is a reprint of George Box's first journal publication, written when he was not yet 20 years old. This paper, on treatment of sewage, displays Box's initial scientific training as a chemist. Here are the other articles:

J. Stuart Hunter writes about Box's initial visits to the USA in the 1950s

William J. Hill describes Box's impact on industrial statistics

David W. Bacon writes about his journey of discovery with George Box

Bovas Abraham, Greta Ljung and Johannes Ledolter describe his work in time series

David M. Steinberg summarizes Box's many contributions to the design of experiments

Stephen P. Jones presents his research on robust design experimentation

William H. Woodall and Enrique del Castillo describe his research on process control

R. Daniel Meyer presents Box's pioneering work on Bayesian inference

Conrad A. Fung summarizes Box's formative work on quality

Many of the authors involved in this special issue were students of George Box. 'Working with George Box was a remarkable experience that we will always cherish. He was a gifted mentor and a dear friend.'

Statistics Views hosts a tribute page to Professor Box where you can see training videos he made and read a sample chapter from An Accidental Statistician which is available here.

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