Enrico Giovannini The Data Deluge: Can Official Statistics Be The Noah’s Ark?
The data deluge
<ul><li>The Petabyte Era (1) </li></ul><ul><li>Sixty years ago, digital computers made information readable. Twenty years ...
<ul><li>The Petabyte Era (2) </li></ul><ul><li>Speaking at the O'Reilly Emerging Technology Conference this past March, Pe...
<ul><li>The value added of statistics </li></ul><ul><li>A formula : </li></ul><ul><li>VAS = N * [(QSA * MF) * RS * TS * NL...
<ul><li>Some evidence </li></ul><ul><li>69% of Europeans think that it is necessary to know economic data </li></ul><ul><l...
<ul><li>Statistics, knowledge and policy: a broken chain </li></ul>
<ul><li>The web 2.0 revolution and official statistics </li></ul><ul><li>Some evidence:  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>95% of thos...
<ul><li>How is information disseminated?  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>As Einstein said, “information is not knowledge”: knowledg...
<ul><li>The reputation of statistics (1) </li></ul>
<ul><li>The reputation of statistics (2) </li></ul>
<ul><li>The reputation of statistics (3) </li></ul>
<ul><li>The reputation of statistics (4) </li></ul>
<ul><li>Opportunities and risks </li></ul><ul><li>Reliable statistics cannot be generated using “collective intelligence”,...
Noi Italia 2011
Dynamic graphs Storytelling Metadata area Download area Static text Noi Italia 2011
Noi Italia 2011 Storytelling Dynamic scatterplot Interactive  Choropleth Integrated graphs
The new website: from a tool to retrieve information to a service provider platform
Each press release becomes a portal
Service-oriented pages
Navigation by theme or by territory: the role of images
New dissemination/communication tools
<ul><li>Some results for Istat </li></ul><ul><li>2009 2010 </li></ul><ul><li>Comunicati stampa e altro   154   297 </li></...
<ul><li>7 Essential Skills You Didn’t Learn in College </li></ul><ul><li>It’s the 21st century. Knowing how </li></ul><ul>...
<ul><li>The open data movement </li></ul>
<ul><li>Towards a new journalism </li></ul>
<ul><li>Towards “data journalism” </li></ul>
<ul><li>A ‘storm’ or a ‘paradigm shift’?   </li></ul><ul><li>Some people may argue that all these “signals” are part of a ...
<ul><li>Consequences for Official Statistics </li></ul><ul><li>More investments in new measurement frameworks  (RS) </li><...
<ul><li>A must for the future of statistics </li></ul><ul><li>This revolution comes from the advances in technology, rathe...
<ul><li>A must for the future of statistics </li></ul><ul><li>This revolution comes from the advances in technology, rathe...
<ul><li>A must for the future of democracy </li></ul><ul><li>In the “knowledge society” the most important divide is betwe...
<ul><li>How to build “official statisticians” in the XXI Century? </li></ul><ul><li>Investments in technology and culture ...
<ul><li>Back to the future </li></ul><ul><li>La filosofia della statistica è la cognizione ragionata delle norme generali ...
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The "data deluge": can official statistics be the Noah's ark?
Giovannini E.

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  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • “ Noi Italia – 100 indicators to understand Italy ” contains 120 indicators for 19 thematic sectors ranging from economic, social, demographic and environmental fields. This product represents an innovative goal from the statistical point of view as 120 indicators have been calculated starting from basic data, coming from different sources. Moreover, an innovative solution that offers both a dynamic and interactive way for graphical visualization of spatio-temporal data and the ability to link free texts to such models has been implemented.
  • The application allowed us to set easily the parameter for the two main graphic components used in “Noi Italia 2011” (Map and Histogram) according to: - the default indicators chosen to be displayed; - features that we offered to the end user through the application;
  • In August 2010 Istat and NComVA conclude a Technical Services Agreement to use Statistics eXplorer at Istat In January 2011 Istat carries out the first online product based on Statistics eXplorer: “ Noi Italia – 100 indicators to understand Italy ” , a publication which provides data by regions, enabling users to exploit the main features of the application. Ultimate goal is to develop Istat.eXplorer as the corporate GeoAnalytics Visualization environment.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • 24/05/11 Statistics represent an essential input into the analytical work of the Organisation. Data are collected, mainly from Member governments, and are converted, as much as possible, onto an internationally comparable basis. Statistics are then made available for internal use and most of them are then published in both printed and electronic form for use by the general public. In collaboration with statisticians from member countries and other international organisations, the OECD develops data systems to respond to policy concerns in areas such as national accounts, environment, and service industries.
  • Ws2011 giovannini

    1. 1. Enrico Giovannini The Data Deluge: Can Official Statistics Be The Noah’s Ark?
    2. 2. The data deluge
    3. 3. <ul><li>The Petabyte Era (1) </li></ul><ul><li>Sixty years ago, digital computers made information readable. Twenty years ago, the Internet made it reachable. Ten years ago, the first search engine crawlers made it a single database. Now Google and like-minded companies are sifting through the most measured age in history, treating this massive corpus as a laboratory of the human condition. They are the children of the Petabyte Age. </li></ul><ul><li>At the Petabyte scale, information is not a matter of simple three- and four-dimensional taxonomy and order but of dimensionally agnostic statistics. It calls for an entirely different approach, one that requires us to lose the tether of data as something that can be visualized in its totality. It forces us to view data mathematically first and establish a context for it later. </li></ul>
    4. 4. <ul><li>The Petabyte Era (2) </li></ul><ul><li>Speaking at the O'Reilly Emerging Technology Conference this past March, Peter Norvig, Google's research director, offered an update to George Box's maxim: &quot;All models are wrong, and increasingly you can succeed without them.&quot; </li></ul><ul><li>This is a world where massive amounts of data and applied mathematics replace every other tool that might be brought to bear. Out with every theory of human behavior, from linguistics to sociology. Forget taxonomy, ontology, and psychology. Who knows why people do what they do? The point is they do it, and we can track and measure it with unprecedented fidelity. With enough data, the numbers speak for themselves. </li></ul>
    5. 5. <ul><li>The value added of statistics </li></ul><ul><li>A formula : </li></ul><ul><li>VAS = N * [(QSA * MF) * RS * TS * NL] </li></ul><ul><li>VAS = value added of official statistics </li></ul><ul><li>N = size of the audience </li></ul><ul><li>QSA = statistical information and research produced </li></ul><ul><li>MF = role of media </li></ul><ul><li>RS = relevance of the statistical information </li></ul><ul><li>TS = trust in official statistics </li></ul><ul><li>NL = users’ “numeracy” </li></ul>
    6. 6. <ul><li>Some evidence </li></ul><ul><li>69% of Europeans think that it is necessary to know economic data </li></ul><ul><li>53% of Europeans are not able even to guess the GDP growth rate in their country. 8% know the right figure </li></ul><ul><li>45% of Europeans do not trust official statistics </li></ul><ul><li>In the US the five main TV channels report GDP figures only in the 46% of cases, the 27 main newspapers in the 39% of cases </li></ul><ul><li>40% of Americans never heard of official GDP data or the source agency </li></ul>
    7. 7. <ul><li>Statistics, knowledge and policy: a broken chain </li></ul>
    8. 8. <ul><li>The web 2.0 revolution and official statistics </li></ul><ul><li>Some evidence: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>95% of those who use Google do not go beyond the first page of occurrences; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>once they reach a site, 95% of users do not click more than three times to find what they want; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>the way in which “discovery metadata” are structured is fundamental, but these metadata have nothing to do with the intrinsic quality of the information provided; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Web 2.0 tends to transform the “consumer” of a particular information/service provided via Internet into a “prosumer”; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>new approaches to discovery are based on people’s opinions. </li></ul></ul>
    9. 9. <ul><li>How is information disseminated? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>As Einstein said, “information is not knowledge”: knowledge is a complex and dynamic process involving cognitive mechanisms and the person’s interest plays a key role in activating the cognitive mechanism. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The “epidemiologic” approach states that information is spread like a virus in a society. </li></ul><ul><li>Therefore, data providers need to reach as many people as possible at the beginning of the chain, to “vaccinate” them against the “ignorance disease”. </li></ul><ul><li>To do that, they have to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>disseminate information relevant to people; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>present it in a way that people can relate it to their own interests; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>use language/tools coherent with those used by people in other contexts. </li></ul></ul>
    10. 10. <ul><li>The reputation of statistics (1) </li></ul>
    11. 11. <ul><li>The reputation of statistics (2) </li></ul>
    12. 12. <ul><li>The reputation of statistics (3) </li></ul>
    13. 13. <ul><li>The reputation of statistics (4) </li></ul>
    14. 14. <ul><li>Opportunities and risks </li></ul><ul><li>Reliable statistics cannot be generated using “collective intelligence”, but this approach can have a huge impact on the way in which statistics are perceived or used. </li></ul><ul><li>New keywords: Legitimacy, Trust, Authority, Credibility </li></ul><ul><li>Great challenge, but also a key opportunity, for data providers to develop a new communication strategy to reach/convince “communities” about the quality of existing sources (UN principle 4: “The statistical agencies are entitled to comment on erroneous interpretation and misuse of statistics”). </li></ul><ul><li>If web 2.0 is marketplace for discussion, should statistical institutions create discussion sites about the quality of data used in the public domain, including that of their own data? </li></ul><ul><li>Is there a risk to open a “Pandora’s box”? </li></ul>
    15. 15. Noi Italia 2011
    16. 16. Dynamic graphs Storytelling Metadata area Download area Static text Noi Italia 2011
    17. 17. Noi Italia 2011 Storytelling Dynamic scatterplot Interactive Choropleth Integrated graphs
    18. 18. The new website: from a tool to retrieve information to a service provider platform
    19. 19. Each press release becomes a portal
    20. 20. Service-oriented pages
    21. 21. Navigation by theme or by territory: the role of images
    22. 22. New dissemination/communication tools
    23. 23. <ul><li>Some results for Istat </li></ul><ul><li>2009 2010 </li></ul><ul><li>Comunicati stampa e altro 154 297 </li></ul><ul><li>Visitatori sito web +27% +16% </li></ul><ul><li>Pagine visitate +13% +22% </li></ul><ul><li>Gygabyte scaricati +36% +46% </li></ul><ul><li>Lanci di agenzia 11.800 12.000 </li></ul><ul><li>Interviste … 200 </li></ul><ul><li>Richieste al contact centre 19.000 15.000 </li></ul><ul><li>Partecipanti a eventi 3.000 </li></ul><ul><li>I.Stat (medie giornaliere) Gennaio Aprile* </li></ul><ul><li>Visite 570 650 </li></ul><ul><li>Pagine visitate 3.311 4.053 </li></ul><ul><li>Click 112.409 161.418 </li></ul>
    24. 24. <ul><li>7 Essential Skills You Didn’t Learn in College </li></ul><ul><li>It’s the 21st century. Knowing how </li></ul><ul><li>to read a novel, craft an essay, and </li></ul><ul><li>derive the slope of a tangent isn’t </li></ul><ul><li>enough anymore. You need to know </li></ul><ul><li>how to swim through the data deluge, </li></ul><ul><li>optimize your prose for Twitter, and </li></ul><ul><li>expose statistics that lie. In the </li></ul><ul><li>following pages, you’ll find our </li></ul><ul><li>updated core curriculum, which fills in the gaps of your </li></ul><ul><li>20th- century education with the tools you need now. Call it </li></ul><ul><li>the neoliberal arts: higher learning for highly evolved </li></ul><ul><li>humans. </li></ul>
    25. 25. <ul><li>The open data movement </li></ul>
    26. 26. <ul><li>Towards a new journalism </li></ul>
    27. 27. <ul><li>Towards “data journalism” </li></ul>
    28. 28. <ul><li>A ‘storm’ or a ‘paradigm shift’? </li></ul><ul><li>Some people may argue that all these “signals” are part of a “storm” and not as indicators of a paradigm shift: therefore there is no need for a radical (and quick) change in the way statistics are disseminated and communicated. </li></ul><ul><li>According to several people, we are facing a real paradigm shift and radical changes are necessary to stay on the market </li></ul><ul><li>I believe that statistical data providers need to evolve from “information providers” to “knowledge builders” </li></ul>
    29. 29. <ul><li>Consequences for Official Statistics </li></ul><ul><li>More investments in new measurement frameworks (RS) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>More availability of microdata </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>More synergies with research centres and with NGOs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Invest in international organisations </li></ul></ul><ul><li>More investments on communication (MF) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New ways to feed media with information/stories </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Develop and apply innovative visualisation tools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bring data where people discuss </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Address stereotypes </li></ul></ul><ul><li>More investments in statistical literacy (NL) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Engage media and foundations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Engage schools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Engage new generations and use their “collective intelligence” </li></ul></ul>
    30. 30. <ul><li>A must for the future of statistics </li></ul><ul><li>This revolution comes from the advances in technology, rather than from a new statistical technique: because of ICT changes, data are becoming a “commodity” and statistical analyses are no longer a kind of methodology whose results are accessible to a small audience, but a key process to produce knowledge for all people. </li></ul><ul><li>In this context, communication is not an just appendix of the core business focused on data production, but a key function that can determine the success or the failure of an official data provider. </li></ul><ul><li>Be open to the dialogue with users using the web 2.0 approach is not a choice anymore: it is a must, especially to ensure that new generations will look at official statistics as an authoritative source . </li></ul>
    31. 31. <ul><li>A must for the future of statistics </li></ul><ul><li>This revolution comes from the advances in technology, rather than from a new statistical technique: because of ICT changes, data are becoming a “commodity” and statistical analyses are no longer a kind of methodology whose results are accessible to a small audience, but a key process to produce knowledge for all people. </li></ul><ul><li>In this context, communication is not an just appendix of the core business focused on data production, but a key function that can determine the success or the failure of an official data provider. </li></ul><ul><li>Be open to the dialogue with users using the web 2.0 approach is not a choice anymore: it is a must, especially to ensure that new generations will look at official statistics as an authoritative source . </li></ul>
    32. 32. <ul><li>A must for the future of democracy </li></ul><ul><li>In the “knowledge society” the most important divide is between those who know and those who do not know. </li></ul><ul><li>Key conclusions of models of democracy based on games theory: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A higher probability of observing the results of policies minimizes the “welfare loss” necessary to provide the right incentives to politicians to follow what citizens want </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The election mechanism is not enough to oblige politicians to follow citizens’ preferences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The citizens’ knowledge, through statistical indicators, of policy outcomes helps the society to achieve its targets with less resources </li></ul></ul>
    33. 33. <ul><li>How to build “official statisticians” in the XXI Century? </li></ul><ul><li>Investments in technology and culture </li></ul><ul><li>Advanced School of Statistics and Economic and Social Analysis </li></ul><ul><li>European Master in Official Statistics </li></ul><ul><li>National Council of Users of Statistical Information </li></ul><ul><li>International research projects to develop open tools </li></ul><ul><li>Open competition for senior positions </li></ul>
    34. 34. <ul><li>Back to the future </li></ul><ul><li>La filosofia della statistica è la cognizione ragionata delle norme generali per ricercare, delle fonti a cui attingere, de’ sintomi per riconoscere, de’ principi per giudicare, degli usi a cui servono gli elementi relativi allo stato delle nazioni. </li></ul><ul><li>Munito di queste cognizioni, il filosofo descrive un paese con quell’esattezza che si usa da un pittore nel fare il ritratto d’una persona; lo giudica con quell’imparzialità che si pratica dai tribunali verso gli accusati; ricerca le cause delle malattie e i modi di guarirle. </li></ul><ul><li>Melchiorre Gioia, 1839 </li></ul>

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