Our rationale is as follows: Significance was a unique proposition when it launched more than a decade ago, and it remains so. Its purpose is to entertain and inform, to demonstrate the importance of statistical thinking, and to explain the contributions statistics makes to our understanding of key issues and the role it plays in society. Our content is meant to be read by, and have relevance to, statisticians and other data professionals, but our goal is to reach beyond these communities; to share our stories with as wide an audience as possible.
Half of that battle involves capturing people’s attention, which – in a world awash with news and information sources – is no mean feat. That is why, from our new masthead on down, we have married a bolder, more eye-catching design to the same content subscribers have enjoyed reading for the past 12 years.
Online, it’s largely business as usual, but in the magazine our content is now arranged into three main sections:
- In Brief serves as a window on the world of statistics, while offering a perspective on the wider world as seen through the lens of statistics. Here, you will find a mix of news, analysis and new regular features, including Statistically speaking, which seeks to challenge published claims and misuses of statistics, and our Ask a statistician column, in which the public have a chance to ask questions of statistical experts.
- In Detail offers a deeper dive into topical issues. Citizen science, the human sex ratio, and peer review are discussed in our February issue, while future issues will feature our regular mix of sports, politics and business-related articles.
- In Practice is an entirely new section that is devoted to explaining how statistical tools and methods are applied, as well profiling statisticians and the work they do. This issue includes an overview of the use of screening tools that are designed to catch illegal business cartels, and an interview with AIG’s chief data scientist.
Alongside the new design, we have also been hard at work developing a new way for you to access and read each issue of Significance. Last year, we made all magazine articles free to read one year after publication. At the same time, we began the process of converting our digital articles from PDF to HTML format. The goal was to have these articles ready in time to be used with our new HTML-based mobile application.
The app is available now on both iTunes and Google Play, and allows digital subscribers and RSS and ASA members to download and read individual articles and full issues on mobile and tablet devices. The presentation of articles has been optimised for digital formats, and the app boasts quick navigation options for elements such as graphics and references.
All articles from 2015 are currently available via the app, as is the February 2016 issue. Please note, however, that for some users this latest issue might take up to 24 hours to appear in the app.
Instructions to help members and subscribers access their content are available here.
However you choose to read Significance – whether online, in print or via the app, we hope you love what you find within our pages.