Air pollution and health: statistical challenges in the modelling and in communicating the results

Start date: 
24 Apr, 2017
Event Speaker: 
Anna Hansell, Heather Walton and others
Royal Statistical Society
12 Errol Street
United Kingdom
More Information: 


One day meeting on air pollution and health - Royal Statistical Society

24 April 2017, 10am - 5pm

Organising Group(s): RSS Emerging Applications Section and Environmental Statistics Section

This meeting aims at bringing together a range of researchers from several disciplines related to air pollution and health. In particular we want to focus on some of the recent statistical challenges emerging in the field and on how the models and the results can be communicated to the general public and to the policy makers.

Speakers and Titles

Stefan Reis, NERC Centre for Ecology & Hydrology and University of Exeter, UK

Modelling exposure to air pollution at population scale – challenges in accounting for spatio-temporal variability

Gavin Shaddick, University of Bath, UK

Global Estimation of Air Quality

Antonio Gasparrini, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK.

Distributed lag models for investigating health effects of air pollution and health: recent advancements

Michela Cameletti, University of Bergamo, Italy

Statistical challenges in modelling spatially misaligned exposure and health data

Heather Walton, King’s College London, UK

Communicating results across research disciplines and to policy makers

Anna Hansell, Imperial College London, UK

Communicating results to general audiences and to the public


Communicating scientific results to general audiences and the lay public is important, but can be challenging. This might include situations where knowledge of study methods used is important, where statistical uncertainty may influence interpretation, or when results disagree with past findings. Examples and lessons learnt will be presented. The Small Area Health Statistics Unit (SAHSU) Environment and Health Atlas was published in 2014 both as a book for academic audiences and website for the public ( SAHSU worked with the NGO Sense About Science to identify and reach target audiences, which resulted in modification of formats, text and maps presented. A press conference was held on the day of publication and the atlas was featured on Radio 4’s Today programme resulting in >200,000 individuals accessing it. Other examples will include publications resulting in positive and less positive engagement with the press, and reports formulated for wide general use such as the Royal College of Physicians report ‘Every breath we take’. Patient and public engagement (PPE) and involvement (PPI) in research is increasingly being required by funding bodies. This may help develop better communication with the public and lay audiences as they become more involved in research both at planning stages for grant applications, and in disseminating results of projects.


To view other abstracts and to register go to


Registration Fees:

Concessionary RSS Fellow £25

RSS Fellow £30

Non-RSS Fellow £55      

Lunch is included in the registration. Tea/Coffee will be served before the meeting and midway through the afternoon.