David Cox (statistician)
Cox in 1980
|Born||15 July 1924|
|Alma mater||St John's College, Cambridge|
University of Leeds
|Known for||Cox proportional hazards model|
Design of experiments
Analysis of binary data
Fellow of the Royal Society
Guy Medal (Silver, 1961) (Gold, 1973)
George Box Medal (2005)
Copley medal (2010)
International Prize in Statistics (2016)
BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award (2016)
|Institutions||Royal Aircraft Establishment|
Wool Industries Research Association
University of Cambridge
Birkbeck College, London
Imperial College, London
Nuffield College, Oxford
|Doctoral advisor||Henry Daniels and Bernard Welch|
|Doctoral students||David Hinkley|
Basilio de Bragança Pereira
Walter L. Smith
Gauss Moutinho Cordeiro
Early life and education
Cox was born in Birmingham. His father was a die sinker and part-owner of a jewellery shop, and they lived near the Jewellery Quarter. He attended Handsworth Grammar School. Cox studied mathematics at St John's College, Cambridge and obtained his PhD from the University of Leeds in 1949, advised by Henry Daniels and Bernard Welch.
He was employed from 1944 to 1946 at the Royal Aircraft Establishment, from 1946 to 1950 at the Wool Industries Research Association in Leeds, and from 1950 to 1956 worked at the Statistical Laboratory at the University of Cambridge. From 1956 to 1966 he was Reader and then Professor of Statistics at Birkbeck College, London. In 1966, he took up the Chair position in Statistics at Imperial College London where he later became head of the mathematics department. In 1988 he became Warden of Nuffield College and a member of the Department of Statistics at Oxford University. He formally retired from these positions in 1994.
Cox has received numerous honorary doctorates, including from Heriot-Watt University in 1987. He has been awarded the Guy Medals in Silver (1961) and Gold (1973) of the Royal Statistical Society. He was elected Fellow of the Royal Society of London in 1973, was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 1985 and became an Honorary Fellow of the British Academy in 2000. He is a Foreign Associate of the US National Academy of Sciences and a foreign member of the Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters. In 1990, he won the Kettering Prize and Gold Medal for Cancer Research for "the development of the Proportional Hazard Regression Model." In 2010 he was awarded the Copley Medal of the Royal Society "for his seminal contributions to the theory and applications of statistics." He is also the first ever recipient of the International Prize in Statistics. In 2013 Cox was elected an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.
He has supervised, collaborated with, and encouraged many younger researchers now prominent in statistics. He has served as President of the Bernoulli Society, of the Royal Statistical Society, and of the International Statistical Institute. He is an Honorary Fellow of Nuffield College and St John's College, Cambridge, and is a member of the Department of Statistics at the University of Oxford.
He has made pioneering and important contributions to numerous areas of statistics and applied probability, of which the best known are:
- Logistic Regression, which is employed when the variable to be predicted is categorical (i.e., can take a limited number of values, e.g., gender, US census race), binary (a special case of categorical with only two values - e.g., success/failure, disease/no disease), or ordinal, where the categories can be ranked (e.g., pain intensity can be absent, mild, moderate, severe, unbearable). Cox's 1958 paper  addressed the case of binary logistic regression.
- The proportional hazards model, which is widely used in the analysis of survival data. An example is survival times in medical research that can be related to information about the patients such as age, diet or exposure to certain chemical substances.
- The Cox process was named after him.
He has won the BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award in the Basic Sciences category jointly with Bradley Efron, for the development of “pioneering and hugely influential” statistical methods that have proved indispensable for obtaining reliable results in a vast spectrum of disciplines from medicine to astrophysics, genomics or particle physics.
Cox has written or co-authored 300 papers and books. From 1966 to 1991 he was the editor of Biometrika. His books are as follows:
- Planning of experiments (1958)
- Queues (Methuen, 1961). With Walter L. Smith
- Renewal Theory (Methuen, 1962).
- The theory of stochastic processes (1965). With Hilton David Miller
- Analysis of binary data (1969). With Joyce Snell
- Theoretical statistics (1974). With D. V. Hinkley
- Point processes (Chapman & Hall/CRC, 1980). With Valerie Isham
- Applied statistics, principles and examples (Chapman & Hall/CRC, 1981). With Joyce Snell
- Analysis of survival data (Chapman & Hall/CRC, 1984). With David Oakes
- Asymptotic techniques for use in statistics. (1989) With Ole E. Barndorff-Nielsen
- Inference and asymptotics (Chapman & Hall/CRC, 1994). With Ole E. Barndorff-Nielsen
- Multivariate dependencies, models, analysis and interpretation (Chapman & Hall, 1995). With Nanny Wermuth
- The theory of design of experiments. (Chapman & Hall/CRC, 2000). With Nancy M. Reid.
- Complex stochastic systems (Chapman & Hall/CRC, 2000). With Ole E. Barndorff-Nielsen and Claudia Klüppelberg
- Components of variance (Chapman & Hall/CRC, 2003). With P. J. Solomon
- Principles of Statistical Inference (Cambridge University Press, 2006). ISBN 978-0-521-68567-2
- Selected Statistical Papers of Sir David Cox 2 Volume Set
- Principles of Applied Statistics (CUP) With Christl A. Donnelly
He is a named editor of the following books
- D. R. Cox and D. M. Titterington, ed. (1991). Complex Stochastic Systems. Royal Society. ISBN 0-85403-453-6.
- The collected works of John Tukey (Chapman & Hall/CRC, 1992). Editor.
- Time series models in econometrics, finance and others (Chapman & Hall/CRC, 1996). With D. V. Hinkley and Ole E. Barndorff-Nielsen (editors)
- D. M. Titterington and D. R. Cox, ed. (2001). Biometrika: One Hundred Years. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-850993-6.
The following book was published in his honour.
- "Pioneer detail: David Cox". UK Data Service. Retrieved 11 October 2016.
- entry at Mathematics Genealogy Project
- Gregersen, Erik (13 February 2015). "Sir David Cox, British statistician". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 11 October 2016.
- firstname.lastname@example.org. "Heriot-Watt University Edinburgh: Honorary Graduates". www1.hw.ac.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-06.
- "No. 50221". The London Gazette. 6 August 1985. p. 10815.
- "David Cox". The Royal Society. Retrieved 11 October 2016.
- Talley, Jill (19 October 2016). "International Prize in Statistics Awarded to Sir David Cox for Survival Analysis Model Applied in Medicine, Science, and Engineering" (PDF) (Press release). American Statistical Association. Retrieved 2016-10-20.
- "Sir David Cox FRS, HonFBA, HonFRSE - The Royal Society of Edinburgh". The Royal Society of Edinburgh. Retrieved 2018-02-01.
- Cox, DR (1958). "The regression analysis of binary sequences (with discussion)". J Roy Stat Soc B. 20: 215–242. JSTOR 2983890.
- ""I would like to think of myself as a scientist, who happens largely to specialise in the use of statistics"– An interview with Sir David Cox". Statistics Views. John Wiley & Sons. 24 January 2014.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to David Cox (statistician).|
- Sir David Cox – homepage at web-site of University of Oxford.
- The certificate of election to the Royal Society is available at Cox, David Roxbee
- There are two photographs at Portraits of Statisticians
- Cox's time in the Cambridge Statistical Laboratory is recounted in The History of the Cambridge Statistical Laboratory
- Summary of his life and work, page 3 of ENBIS News, Winter/Spring 2006[permanent dead link]
- For Cox's PhD students see David Roxbee Cox at the Mathematics Genealogy Project page.
- Nancy Reid (August 1994). "A Conversation with Sir David Cox". Statistical Science. 9 (3): 439–455. doi:10.1214/ss/1177010394.
| Warden of Nuffield College, Oxford
Sir Anthony Atkinson