ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Theory Ahead of Application

Perspectives in Statistical Science edited by A K Basu, J K Ghosh, P K Sen and B K Sinha; Oxford University Press, 2000; pp 304 + xiv, Rs 595.

This is a collection consisting of some of the papers presented at the Third International Triennial Calcutta Symposium on Statistics and Probability held in December 1997. These symposia have been successfully organised since 1991 by the Calcutta Statistical Association in collaboration with other statistical institutions of Calcutta. In the history of statistics in India, Calcutta occupies a special place. This is where, more than half a century ago, P C Mahalanobis first planted the sapling of this discipline brought from England. That statistical methodology has now become a universal technology in aid of decision-making in all areas fraught with uncertainty in India is largely due to the efforts of Mahalanobis and P V Sukhatme, their associates and successors. S K Chatterjee, to whom this volume is dedicated, is a worthy member of this line. He chose Calcutta University and the Calcutta Statistical Association as his bases of activity. The statistical community in India owes him a considerable debt of gratitude for his outstanding theoretical and applied contributions and unstinted services to the academic and professional statistical community. 

The fact that statistics took root in India for the first time at Calcutta and the symposium is organised by the Calcutta Statistical Association is reflected in the following numbers relating to authorship of papers in this collection: Authors of Bengal origin: 26 Authors of Indian but not Bengal origin: 6 Authors of non-Indian origin: 9 Of course it is recognised that the composition of the speakers in the symposium (as opposed to those who chose to publish in this volume) would be somewhat different. It may also be noted that 16 of the 24 papers were contributed from abroad and the remaining eight from within India

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