Data Geniuses Who Predict the Past

Data Geniuses Who Predict the Past

If there is one thing I hope you remember from your college statistics class, it’s this: Correlation does not imply causation. This is especially important to remember in our world of big data. Any large dataset will have hundreds of thousands of correlations, but most of those correlations will reflect purely random occurrences that mean…

Six Things to Know about P-Values

Six Things to Know about P-Values

Whenever I write a research report, I feel strongly ambivalent about flagging data as “statistically significant.” If possible, I try to avoid it altogether. Why? Because p-values and concepts of statistical significance are often misunderstood, misused, and misleading. Indeed, the problem is so prevalent that one well-respected scientific journal in social psychology (Basic and Applied…

New Resource for Tons of Great Data

New Resource for Tons of Great Data

Every professional in market research should know about and use the amazing, public, free data resources provided by the U.S. government—data that includes essential information about our demographics, communities, businesses, commerce, roads, health, education…the list goes on. Now, a small group of consultants, data scientists, and programmers are trying to make that easier with a…

Five Summer Classes to Up Your Research Game

Five Summer Classes to Up Your Research Game

Every year I read the university catalogues for summer coursework in research methods and share a few recommendations with colleagues and clients. If you are looking for more than just the information and inspiration you get from conferences, look to the substance and depth you can get from a classroom. It’s easier than you might…

Defending Your Statistics in Court

Defending Your Statistics in Court

There is nothing worse than presenting research findings to an audience predisposed to hate it. Maybe you’ve had that experience of being in a boardroom of hostile managers? They don’t like what you’re about to say, so they pick at every methodological decision, shifting focus away from the story that the data have to tell.…