ASQ - Statistics Division

Statistical Thinking: Methods and Roles for the Past, Present and Future

Abstract: This special publication has a brief introduction and two articles: 1. Fall Technical Conference (FTC) Keynote Address by Stuart Hunter and 2. Methods for Business Improvement - What's on the Horizon. The first article reviewed the history of the FTC and the development of statistics. However, the major question posed by Stuart Hunter is whether the sponsoring societies of the FTC are doing enough continuing education. In addition, Stuart laments the loss of the Gordon Conference on Statistics. This conference brought together diverse personalities and ideas in a learning environment. Stuart proposes that the sponsors of the FTC have their own "Gordon" conference. In the second article, Ronald Snee looks at current trends in the development and use of business improvement methodology. He conjectures that the next generation of improvement methodology will integrate the best aspects of currently used approaches such as Lean Manufacturing, Six Sigma, ISO 9000 and Baldridgy assessment thereby streamlining the improvement methodology and increasing the effectiveness and efficiency of the approach. He argues that the resulting approach needs to be more than just a methodology for conducting improvement projects. Type of culture (business and ethnic), function, leadership, management systems, and other factors must also be taken into account. The characteristics of a holistic approach to improvement that accomplishes these goals are presented.

Keywords: Fall Technical Conference - Continuing Education - Business Improvement Methodology

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