Statistical Science


Sir David Cox FRS 1924—2022

21 January 2022

We are very sad to report the death on 18 January 2022 of Sir David Cox FRS. David was a good friend of members of the Department and a long-standing research collaborator, particularly with regard to work on spatial-temporal modelling and applications in hydrology. David was arguably the most influential statistician of the second half of the 20th century. He was knighted in 1985 and received very many prestigious academic prizes and awards including the Guy Medal in Gold by the Royal Statistical Society (1973), the Kettering Prize and Gold Medal for Cancer Research (1990), the Copley Medal of the Royal Society (2010) and was the first ever recipient of the International Prize in Statistics (2017). During his career, he published more than 380 papers and was working right up until his death.

David was also closely associated with the statistical journal Biometrika, the management of which has been based in the Department since its inception in 1901.  David was the third Editor of Biometrika, following Karl and Egon Pearson, and covering the period 1966 - 1991. On standing down as Editor, he became a Trustee of the Biometrika Trust, which is responsible for the continuing publication and development of the journal, retaining that position until 2019 and taking the role of Chair from 1993 to 2004.  His influence over the development of the journal was immense, and both its current standing in statistical circles and the strength of the Trust is in a large part down to him.

We shall miss him.