National Press Club

Panel to Discuss How to Differentiate Among Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics

May 29, 2014 | By Lori Russo |

Not sure how to tell a good poll from a bad one? Don't know how to spot inaccurate spinning of statistical results? The National Press Club Journalism Institute is offering a professional development session for journalists that will sort it all out.

The NPCJI's Professional Development Committee is hosting "Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics" on Wednesday, June 4, at 9:30 a.m. The session is designed to help reporters become more confident in the statistical components of their stories and show them where to find reliable sources and unbiased analysis. Participating in the panel will be Ron Wasserstein, executive director, American Statistical Association; Sallie Keller, director and professor of statistics, Social and Decision Analytics Laboratory, Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech University; and Michelle Jamrisko, reporter, Bloomberg News.

The session will help reporters and editors learn how to:

  • Find and analyze data from polls, scientific studies, and other research and data sources;
  • Confirm results from a statistical analysis, study or poll are valid;
  • Identify the difference between a good survey or poll and a bad one;
  • Spot invalid statistics or the inaccurate spinning of statistical results to favor one side of an issue;
  • Accurately interpret and report statistical results;
  • Find expert statisticians who can help confirm the validity of a study, analyze statistical results and data, and define the uncertainty in data sets.

To register for the event, please click here. For more information, contact Lori Russo at