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18 July 2022

Saloni Dattani highly commended for Royal Statistical Society Award

Saloni Dattani, PhD candidate at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN) at King’s College London, has been highly commended for the Royal Statistical Society Statistical Excellence in Journalism Awards.

Saloni Dattani RSS award

Saloni Dattani was highly commended in the category ‘Best statistical commentary by a non-journalistfor her New Statesman article, The crisis in Covid vaccine messaging is leaving pregnant women unprotected from Omicron.

The article, published 17 December 2021, investigated low vaccination uptake among pregnant women during the Omicron wave. It debunked common myths about vaccine risk during pregnancy, such as the vaccine causing infertility. The judges for this category were impressed with how accessible the piece was, while maintaining statistical rigour. It was considered to be a powerful example of using statistics to give clarity on an urgent, neglected issue.

It was amazing to receive this award among so many great people who have contributed so much in the last year, particularly in the effort against Covid-19. This was an important issue to me and I'm very glad that my article made an impact.

Saloni Dattani, PhD candidate at the IoPPN, King’s College London and the University of Hong Kong

Saloni is a PhD candidate in psychiatric genetics at the Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Centre (SGDP) at the IoPPN, King’s College London and the Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine at the University of Hong Kong. Her research is based within the Statistical Genetics Unit, a cross-school unit, comprising 20 researchers in the SGDP and in the Department of Medical and Molecular Genetics (Faculty of Life Sciences and Medicine), led by Professor Cathryn Lewis. She is also a researcher at Our World in Data, an open access database which aims to make research accessible and understandable to help combat world problems.

Congratulations to Saloni on this well-deserved recognition of her journalism skills by the Royal Statistical Society. Communicating data clearly, accurately and in an engaging style is challenging and Saloni’s articles are always a pleasure to read.

Professor Cathryn Lewis, Head of Department, SGDP Centre, IoPPN, King’s College London

Alongside her PhD, Saloni is an accomplished science writer. She is founding editor of Works in Progress - an online magazine dedicated to sharing new ideas to improve the world – and an editor at Stripe Press, which publishes books about economic and technological advancement.

The Royal Statistical Society is one of the world’s leading organisations advocating for the importance of statistics and data. The professional organisation, consisting of 10,000 members in the UK and across the world, advocates for the key role of statistics and data in society and works to ensure that policy formulation and decision making are informed by evidence for the public good.

For more information, please contact Patrick O’Brien (Senior Media Officer).

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Research Student