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Generating Productive Dialogue between Consulting Statisticians and their Clients in the Pharmaceutical and Medical Research Settings

Emir, Birol; Amaratunga, Dhammika; Beltangady, Mohan; Cabrera, Javier; Freeman, Roy; Madigan, David B.; Nguyen, Ha H.; Whalen, Edward Patrick

Due to the ever-increasing complexity of scientific technologies and resulting data, consulting statisticians are becoming more involved in the design, conduct, and analysis of biomedical research. This requires extensive collaboration between the consulting statistician and nonstatisticians, such as researchers, clinicians, and corporate executives. Consequently, a successful consulting career is becoming ever more dependent on the statistician's ability to effectively communicate with nonstatisticians. This is especially true when more complex, nontraditional analytical methods are required. In this paper, we examine the collaboration between statisticians and nonstatisticians from three different professional perspectives. Integrating these perspectives, we discuss ways to help the consulting statistician generate productive dialogue with clients. Finally, we examine how universities can better prepare students for careers in statistical consulting by incorporating more communication-based elements into their curriculum and by offering students ample opportunities to collaborate with nonstatisticians. Overall, we designed this exercise to help the consulting statistician generate dialogue with clients that results in more productive collaborations and a more satisfying work experience.

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Also Published In

Title
Open Access Medical Statistics
DOI
https://doi.org/10.2147/OAMS.S46169

More About This Work

Academic Units
Statistics
Publisher
Dove Medical Press Ltd.
Published Here
May 13, 2014