Kevin James Mcconway

Kevin James Mcconway
The Open University (UK) · School of Mathematics and Statistics

About

76
Publications
19,866
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
2,963
Citations
Citations since 2016
16 Research Items
1273 Citations
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200
Additional affiliations
January 2016 - April 2017
The Open University (UK)
Position
  • Professor

Publications

Publications (76)
Article
Kevin McConway and David Spiegelhalter offer tips to statisticians communicating through the media, especially in the time of Covid‐19 Kevin McConway and David Spiegelhalter offer tips to statisticians communicating through the media, especially in the time of Covid‐19.
Article
To the Editor We have 4 concerns about the article and editorial on the association between maternal fluoride exposure during pregnancy and offspring IQ.¹,2 First, there was no significant IQ difference between children from fluoridated and nonfluoridated communities and no overall association with maternal urinary fluoride (MUFSG). The authors did...
Article
The present analysis revisits the impact of extremely low‐frequency magnetic fields (ELF‐MF) on melatonin (MLT) levels in human and rat subjects using both a parametric and non‐parametric approach. In this analysis, we use 62 studies from review articles. The parametric approach consists of a Bayesian logistic regression (LR) analysis and the non‐p...
Chapter
It never was the case that only statisticians work with statistics, but the occupational landscape is becoming more and more diverse. This chapter looks at the work of statisticians and data scientists, but also at how journalists, campaigners, and academics such as economists and psychologists work with statistics, and how the resulting variety of...
Chapter
Introduction It is often claimed that the great British writer H.G. Wells wrote: ‘Statistical thinking will one day be as necessary for efficient citizenship as the ability to read and write!’ – but he didn’t. This is a paraphrase by the statistician Samuel Wilks (1952) of something much wordier that Wells wrote in 1903. If Wells and Wilks were rig...
Article
Full-text available
In response to recommendations to redefine statistical significance to P ≤ 0.005, we propose that researchers should transparently report and justify all choices they make when designing a study, including the alpha level.
Article
Full-text available
In response to recommendations to redefine statistical significance to P ≤ 0.005, we propose that researchers should transparently report and justify all choices they make when designing a study, including the alpha level.
Chapter
In the second set of reflective writings (the first set appears in Chap. 13), another group of prominent statisticians and statistics educators considers the impact of recent and future developments on both the statistics curriculum and the ways in which it is taught and learned. The two connecting themes in this group of writings are the ubiquitou...
Preprint
Full-text available
In response to recommendations to redefine statistical significance to p ≤ .005, we propose that researchers should transparently report and justify all choices they make when designing a study, including the alpha level.
Chapter
Dennis Lindley (1923–2013) was a leading figure in Bayesian statistics and an important leader of British and international statistics in the second half of the twentieth century. His statistical career began in the wartime British Civil Service. He held academic posts at the University of Cambridge and (as head of department) at the University of...
Article
Population seroprevalence can be estimated from serosurveys by classifying quantitative measurements into positives (past infection/vaccinated) or negatives (susceptible) according to a fixed assay cut-off. The choice of assay cut-offs has a direct impact on seroprevalence estimates. A time-resolved fluorescence immunoassay (TRFIA) was used to test...
Article
How should statisticians interact with journalists? The author, an academic statistician, has worked with journalists in several ways over the years. The article explores the many-sided relationship between scientists, journalists and the public, from the point of view of the statisticians involved. One pessimistic view of the role of numbers in ne...
Article
Full-text available
Accurate species identification is fundamental to biodiversity science, but the natural history skills re-quired for this are neglected in formal education at all levels. In this paper we describe how the web application ispotnature.org and its sister site ispot.org.za (collectively, " iSpot ") are helping to solve this problem by combining learnin...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of the European Sero-Epidemiology Network 2 (ESEN2) project was to estimate age-specific seroprevalence for a number of vaccine-preventable diseases in Europe. To achieve this serosurveys were collected by 22 national laboratories. To adjust for a variety of laboratory methods and assays, all quantitative results were transformed to a refer...
Article
The impact was assessed of censored serological measurements on regression equations fitted to data from panels of sera tested by different laboratories, for the purpose of standardizing serosurvey results to common units. Several methods that adjust for censoring were compared, such as deletion, simple substitution, multiple imputation and censore...
Article
The growing literature on the phylogenetic structure of plant communities places great emphasis on the role of phylogenetic niche conservatism (PNC) in community assembly. However, the patterns revealed by such analyses are difficult to interpret in the absence of independent data on niche structure. While there is increasing evidence that plant co...
Article
Do you shout at the morning radio when a story about a medical “risk” is distorted, exaggerated, mangled out of all recognition? Does your annoyance ruin your breakfast? You are not alone. Kevin McConway and David Spiegelhalter have developed a defence strategy to save their start‐of‐the‐day sanity. Strike back at the presenters! And make it person...
Article
Full-text available
1. Volunteers have helped in scientific surveys of birds and other organisms for decades, but more recently, the use of the Internet has enormously widened the opportunity for citizen science and greatly increased its practice. There is now a need to share experience of which methods work and which do not. Here, we describe how we planned and execu...
Article
Study Type – Therapy (case series) Level of Evidence 4 What's known on the subject? and What does the study add? Historically, the majority of centres in the UK practise a pre-plan brachytherapy technique which is limited to prostate volumes <50 ml. This study provides further evidence that it is technically possible to deliver a quality implant in...
Article
Full-text available
Organisms provide some of the most sensitive indicators of climate change and evolutionary responses are becoming apparent in species with short generation times. Large datasets on genetic polymorphism that can provide an historical benchmark against which to test for recent evolutionary responses are very rare, but an exception is found in the bro...
Article
• Ecologists still puzzle over how plant species manage to coexist with one another while competing for the same essential resources. The classic answer for animal communities is that species occupy different niches, but how plants do this is more difficult to determine. We previously found niche segregation along fine-scale hydrological gradients...
Article
Consistent, repeatable segregation of plant species along hydrological gradients is an established phenomenon that must in some way reflect a trade-off between plants' abilities to tolerate the opposing constraints of drought and waterlogging. In C3 species tissue carbon isotope discrimination (δ13C) is known to vary sensitively in response to stom...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods Plants are in general exquisitely sensitive to differences in soil moisture availability, particularly when competing with each other. We have previously found that species segregate along soil moisture gradients in English wet meadows (Silvertown et al., 1999, Nature 400:61-63). Evidence from that study suggested that...
Article
Plants are in general exquisitely sensitive to differences in soil moisture availability, particularly when competing with each other. We have previously found that species segregate along soil moisture gradients in English wet meadows (Silvertown et al. 1999) and we now have good evidence from several sites in the Western Cape that the same phenom...
Article
The global extinction of species proceeds through the erosion of local populations. Using a 60-year time series of annual sighting records of plant species, we studied the correlates of local extinction risk associated with a risk of species extinction in the Park Grass Experiment where plants received long-term exposure to nutrient enrichment, soi...
Article
R. H. Whittaker's idea that plant diversity can be divided into a hierarchy of spatial components from alpha at the within-habitat scale through beta for the turnover of species between habitats to gamma along regional gradients implies the underlying existence of alpha, beta, and gamma niches. We explore the hypothesis that the evolution of alpha,...
Article
Full-text available
A significant proportion of the global diversity of flowering plants has evolved in recent geological time, probably through adaptive radiation into new niches. However, rapid evolution is at odds with recent research which has suggested that plant ecological traits, including the beta- (or habitat) niche, evolve only slowly. We have quantified tra...
Article
Full-text available
This report explores the incentive effects of different forms of governance of health-care organisations. Building on a multidisciplinary literature review, it seeks to map a new terrain of research and to suggest an agenda for the future that will make sense to stakeholders in health and research communities. The report addresses the Governance–In...
Article
Observed variations in rates of taxonomic diversification have been attributed to a range of factors including biological innovations, ecosystem restructuring, and environmental changes. Before inferring causality of any particular factor, however, it is critical to demonstrate that the observed variation in diversity is significantly greater than...
Article
Full-text available
We report the successful amplification of microsatellite markers for the chloroplast genome from century-old samples of 2 grasses growing in the Park Grass Experiment (PGE): Anthoxanthum ordoratum and Festuca rubra. This opens the possibility of establishing a long-term genetic time series for the PGE, which began in 1856 and is believed to be the...
Article
Variations in the origination and extinction rates of species over geological time often are linked with a range of factors, including the evolution of key innovations, changes in ecosystem structure, and environmental factors such as shifts in climate and physical geography. Before hypothesizing causality of a single factor, it is critical to demo...
Article
Variations in the origination and extinction rates of species over geological time often are linked with a range of factors, including the evolution of key innovations, changes in ecosystem structure, and environmental factors such as shifts in climate and physical geography. Before hypothesizing causality of a single factor, it is critical to demo...
Article
Full-text available
The Park Grass Experiment (PGE) is the longest-observed set of experimental plant communities in existence. Although the gross composition of the vegetation was at equilibrium over the 60-yr period from 1920 to 1979, annual records show that individual species exhibited a range of dynamics. We tested two hypotheses to explain why some species initi...
Article
About the book: Why are some individuals and groups within a society more prone to illness than others? How do we know what makes us ill? What can be done to alleviate illness or disability, and how can we be sure that an intervention will work? Biomedical scientists, doctors, statisticians, epidemiologists, sociologists, anthropologists and histor...
Chapter
This important collection of essays is a synthesis of foundational studies in Bayesian decision theory and statistics. An overarching topic of the collection is understanding how the norms for Bayesian decision making should apply in settings with more than one rational decision maker and then tracing out some of the consequences of this turn for B...
Article
A bank offering unsecured personal loans may be interested in several related outcome variables, including defaulting on the repayments, early repayment or failing to take up an offered loan. Current predictive models used by banks typically consider such variables individually. However, the fact that they are related to each other, and to many int...
Article
The Park Grass Experiment at Rothamsted consists of a series of fertilizer treatments which have been applied to a species-rich hay meadow annually since 1856. Detailed botanical analyses of the plots between 1862 and 1992 were classified to one of the National Vegetation Classification (NVC) communities using the similarity measured by Czekanowski...
Article
Full-text available
Graphical models are a class of statistical tools which have recently undergone extensive theoretical development. Theyallow one to build models representing the relationships between large numbers of variables, helping to identify paths by which different variables are influenced by others. They look particularly promising for credit-scoring and c...
Article
The Environmental Stewardship Scheme provides payments to farmers for the provision of environmental services based on agricultural foregone income. This creates a potential incentive compatibility problem which, combined with an information asymmetry on farm land heterogeneity, could lead to adverse selection of farmers into the scheme. However, t...
Article
1 A 60-year time-series of species recorded in visual surveys of the plant communities of the Park Grass Experiment is analysed to detect changes through time in the frequency of species on seven plots with acidified soil and on 35 non-acidified plots. 2 Of 14 species recorded on the acidified plots, eight decreased with time, one (Agrostis capilla...
Article
Full-text available
We used data on grassland plant community composition over a 90-yr period in the history of the Park Grass Experiment, England to look for relationship between variation in composition and annual variation in rainfall and biomass. This was investigated by regressions of biomass and rainfall on each other, and of these variables separately on each o...
Article
Full-text available
The Park Grass Experiment (PGE), begun at Rothamsted Experimental Station in 1856 and still running, affords a unique opportunity to test for the influence of species number and soil reaction on biomass variability in a suite of comparable plant communities. Biomass variability was measured by calculating the coefficient of variation (CV) over time...
Article
The Park Grass Experiment at Rothamsted consists of a series of fertilizer treatments which have been applied to a species-rich hay meadow annually since 1856. Detailed botanical analyses of the plots between 1862 and 1992 were classified to one of the National Vegetation Classification (NVC) communities using the similarity measured by Czekanowski...
Article
Full-text available
1.The CSR theory of life-history strategies of Grime, and demographically based theories of life history represent strongly contrasting approaches that have yet to be reconciled. 2. It is argued that there are a priori grounds for analogy between Grime's three primary strategies of the established phase in plants and the demographic processes of gr...
Article
A standard approach to the combination of probabilistic opinions involves taking a weighted linear average of the individuals distributions. This paper reviews some of the possible interpretations that have been proposed for these weights in the literature on expert use. Several paradigms for selecting weights are also considered. Special attention...
Article
Full-text available
When a panel of experts is asked to provide some advice in the form of a group probability distribution, the question arises as to whether they should synthesize their opinions before or after they learn the outcome of an experiment. If the group posterior distribution is the same whatever the order in which the pooling and the updating are done, t...
Article
Mackinnon's SPAN technique is an iterative voting system where votes are reallocated between the voters and the alternatives being voted for in fixed proportions round by round. This iterative reallocation is usually performed by a computer. However, the technique is related to stochastic matrix theory, and the limiting allocations of votes can be...
Article
Suppose a decision maker has asked a group of experts to assess subjective probability distributions over some space, and he wishes to find a consensus probability distribution as a function of these. The assumption that finding the consensus distribution commutes with marginalization of the distributions implies that the consensus must be found us...
Article
Full-text available
BBC Radio 4, the second most popular radio station in the UK, is a spoken word station run by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). A programme on numbers, More or Less, has grown from a small beginning in 2001 to be a key regular part of the Radio 4 current affairs output, with around 1.2 million listeners to each programme and an internatio...
Article
Full-text available
Consistent, repeatable segregation of plant species along hydrological gradients is an established phenomenon that must in some way reflect a trade-off between plants’ abilities to tolerate the opposing constraints of drought and waterlogging. In C3 species tissue carbon isotope discrimination (δ13C) is known to vary sensitively in response to stom...
Article
Why are some individuals and groups within a society more prone to illness than others? How do we know what makes us ill? What can be done to alleviate illness or disability, and how can we be sure that an intervention will work? Biomedical scientists, doctors, statisticians, epidemiologists, sociologists, anthropologists and historians all study h...
Article
About the book: Why are some individuals and groups within a society more prone to illness than others? How do we know what makes us ill? What can be done to alleviate illness or disability, and how can we be sure that an intervention will work? Biomedical scientists, doctors, statisticians, epidemiologists, sociologists, anthropologists and histor...
Article
About the book: Why are some individuals and groups within a society more prone to illness than others? How do we know what makes us ill? What can be done to alleviate illness or disability, and how can we be sure that an intervention will work? Biomedical scientists, doctors, statisticians, epidemiologists, sociologists, anthropologists and histor...

Network

Cited By

Projects

Project (1)