I am honored to be elected chair of FMS and look forward to working with the board, members, and partners. I am Professor of Biostatistics at the Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (MEB) at Karolinska Institutet, where I've been employed since March 1999. My primary research interests lie in developing and applying statistical methods for population-based cancer survival. I have general interests in epidemiology, particularly cancer epidemiology, and methods for register-based research. I studied in my native Australia, where my first job was in a health services research group (the primary client was the state health department) but I also dabbled in industrial process control and quality improvement. Details of my early career, including how I came to Sweden, can be found on my personal web page (http://pauldickman.com/bio_eng.php) and details of my current research can be found on my KI web page (http://ki.se/en/people/paudic). I've done a small amount of consulting outside academia, and even presented at the European Medicines Agency (when it was EMEA) although my knowledge of statistics in the pharmaceutical industry is rather limited. One of the biggest attractions for me of being FMS chair is the possibility to learn more about the activities and issues faced by colleagues working in other areas and in other parts of the country.
The new FMS board has not met at the time of writing, so I will postpone reports of our activities and plans until a future issue. I was, however, impressed with the excellent work done by the previous board in organising high-quality conferences each spring and fall, improving the flow of information to members, and strengthening the finances and hope the new board will be able to build their efforts. I would like to take the opportunity to thank the outgoing board members for their dedication and excellent work, especially the past president Marcus Thuresson and the past secretary Caroline Weibull.
My impression is that the profile of biostatistical science in Sweden has improved in the last 15 years. I feel there is an increased level of understanding and respect for biostatistics among biomedical scientists, although there remains more work to be done. FMS as an organisation has an important role to play in advancing our discipline and I look forward to the opportunity of working with our members.