Forecasting workshop: Switzerland, June 2011


I will be running a workshop on Statistical Forecasting: Principles and Practice in Switzerland, 20-22 June 2011. Check out the venue: Waldhotel Doldenhorn, Kandersteg! So if you fancy a trip to the beautiful Swiss Alps next June, read on…


Forecasting is required in many situations: deciding whether to build another power generation plant in the next five years requires forecasts of future demand; scheduling staff in a call centre next week requires forecasts of call volume; stocking an inventory requires forecasts of stock requirements. Forecasts can be required several years in advance (for the case of capital investments), or only a few minutes beforehand (for telecommunication routing). Whatever the circumstances or time horizons involved, forecasting is an important aid in effective and efficient planning.

In this workshop, we will explore methods and models for statistical forecasting. Topics to be covered include seasonality and trends, exponential smoothing, ARIMA modelling, dynamic regression and state space models, as well as forecast accuracy methods and forecast evaluation techniques such as cross-validation. Some recent developments in each of these areas will be explored. The workshop will involve a mixture of lectures and practical sessions using R.

Examples will be drawn from my consulting experiences


Workshop participants will be assumed to be familiar with basic statistical tools such as multiple regression and maximum likelihood estimation, but no knowledge of time series or forecasting will be assumed. Some prior experience in R is desirable but not essential. Please bring a laptop with preinstalled R software in its latest release (see and the “forecast” package for R.

Registration and further information

The workshop is being organized by the Swiss Statistical Society. The workshop brochure provides additional information about costs and registration.

Continue the fun in Prague

The forecasting workshop finishes on Wednesday 22 June, and I will then be flying to Prague for the 31st International Symposium on Forecasting, beginning on Sunday 26 June. The ISF is the leading international forecasting conference and is always well-worth attending for anyone involved with forecasting research. I hope some of the workshop participants will also join me in Prague for the ongoing forecasting fun and festivities!

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