Experts in Statistics have advised more women to develop interest in Statistics and Data Science in order to harness their skills for better performance in their careers.
The call was made by various speakers at a South-East regional symposium to mark the 2020 International Year of Women in Statistics and Data Science at the Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike (MOUAU) in Abia.
It was organised by the Laboratory for Interdisciplinary Statistical Analysis (LISA) 2020 Network, MOUAU chapter, in collaboration with the International Statistical Institute (ISI).
Joy Nwabueze, a Professor of Statistics, said that it was important for more women to embrace statistics and data science.
She said that the more women there are in the area, the better for the realisation of the sustainable development goals.
Nwabueze, who is the first female Professor of Statistics in Nigeria, spoke on the topic: “Statistics and Good Governance: the role of Women in Statistics.”
She said that women in statistics and good governance would lead to greater economic stability and prevention of violence against women, amongst others.
She said that women in statistics are also good for development, adding that it would encourage the most use of the nation’s resources.
Nwabueze, who is the immediate past Vice-Chancellor (Administration) of MOAUA, said, “When women are into statistics, the family and society will be better.”
She said that good governance is participatory, consistent with rule of law, responsive, consensus-oriented, equitable and inclusive.
She further said that good governance is effective and efficient as well as accountable.
Also, Dr Hope Mbachu, a Statistics lecturer at the Imo State University (IMSU), encouraged more women to embrace statistics and data science, in order to be involved in social transformation.
According to her, social transformation is the main economic factor that moves countries forward.
Mbachu, who is the IMSU LISA Coordinator, spoke on “Strengthening Statistics and Data Science for Structural Development, the role of Female Statisticians.”
She said that the often neglected side of data science or statistics was the bane of using data erroneously.
Mbachu pointed out that where there was more gender equality, there would be more peace, among others.
“Women have made tremendous strides in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics but there is still work to be done to achieve equality in what have been traditionally male-dominated disciplines,” she said.
The organiser and MOUAU LISA Coordinator, George Uchechukwu, said the programme was to commemorate the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale, who made landmark achievements in statistics and data science.
Uchechukwu, a lecturer in the Department of Statistics, MOAUA, advised female students to consider a career in statistics and data science, adding that opportunities abound in the field.
Earlier, the Vice-Chancellor of MOUAU, Prof. Francis Otunta, said the programme was important because there was a dearth of women in Mathematical Sciences.
Otunta, who was represented by Prof. Donatus Igbokwe, Dean, College of Physical and Applied Science, said the event would encourage more women to develop an interest in mathematical sciences, statistics and data science.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the theme of the event is, “Connecting to build capacity to transform evidence into action and celebrate the International Year of Women in Statistics and Data Science.”