Gather and assess data to help guide national defense policy.
What does a Defense Statistician do?
A Defense Statistician collects and analyzes quantitative data, to help officials make defense-related decisions and policies. These officials include Politicians, senior officers in the Army, Navy, and Marines, and even the President Of The United States.
If you think national defense is all about the gauge of your guns, the size of your bombs, and the strength of your tanks, think again. National defense isn’t just about having an arsenal of weapons. It’s also about having an arsenal of information. That arsenal is what you manage when you’re a Defense Statistician.
Like a regular Statistician, you spend your days immersed in surveys, questionnaires, reports, models, and forecasts, which you design and execute using tried-and-true statistical concepts like sampling, probability, and variance.
Whether you’re an employee or a Consultant, you make your reports by writing, designing, and asking questions, then recording, summarizing, and communicating answers, which you ultimately translate into predictions, prognoses, and recommendations. Your efforts might yield demographic data describing the numbers, ages, and genders of new military recruits. They might yield economic data revealing the quantities, locations, and costs of military provisions. Or they might yield strategic data exploring the causes and effects of military deaths and injuries.
Whatever the data, it’s your responsibility as a Defense Statistician to obtain it by asking the right questions in the right ways to the right people, which requires an intimate understanding of defense systems, structures, issues, and events. More than a Pollster, therefore, you’re the statistical equivalent of an Intelligence Analyst (only armed with scatter plots instead of surveillance equipment!).