Over twenty five years of forecasting research has seen major changes in the theoretical ideas underpinning forecasting effectiveness. However, there has been less impact on forecasting practice. For the ninth year, after the award of three grants in 2003, and two in each year 2004 through 2010, the IIF, in collaboration with SAS, is proud to announce financial support for research on how to improve forecasting methods and business forecasting practice. This consists of two $5,000 grants.

Applications should be submitted to the IIF Office by September 30, 2011. The application must include:

  • Description of the project (at most 4 pages)
  • Letter of support from the home institution where the researcher is based.
  • Brief (4 page) c.v.
  • Budget and work-plan for the project.


Criteria for the award of the grant will include likely impact on forecasting methods and business applications. Although funding is not exclusively reserved for the topics found in the link below, please review for description of primary research needs here.

Consideration will be given to the track record of the researcher (thus, students are expected to have an experienced researcher as a co-writer) and whether supplementary funding is likely to be gained. It is also expected that the research supported by the SAS/IIF grant be presented in an International Symposium on Forecasting (ISF) organized by the IIF. The awards will be made through a committee appointed by the IIF directors. The results of the evaluation will be announced to the applicants within about 10 weeks of the closing date.

Grant recipients are required to author a paper reporting on their research for possible publication in the International Journal of Forecasting (IJF). Therefore it is useful to keep in mind the IJF scope; see www.forecasters.org/ijf/scope.

Funding details

1. SAS will provide $10,000 per year to the IIF to fund two SAS Forecasting Research Grants. These funds and the grants will be administered by the IIF.

2. These grants will be for targeted research that aims to improve the state of the art in forecasting methods and business forecasting applications. A committee appointed by the IIF will designate research objectives, solicit proposals, award the grants, and oversee completion of sponsored research. The research objectives will be drawn largely from the "Research Needs" identified on the forecasting principles page, and the committee would have oversight on the specification of these needs.

3. The "methodology grant" will be directed to studies that assess the value of new or untested forecasting methods or principles. The "application grant" will be directed to studies on the application of forecasting principles to business decision processes. The grant committee will select research proposals to fill identified gaps in current knowledge so as to advance these two purposes: to enable better forecasts and to enable better use of forecasting by business organizations. Should there be a lack of suitable proposal in one of the areas, two grants could be made in a single area.

4. Grant recipients will author a paper reporting on their research and will be invited to publish the paper in the IJF. The IJF will provide peer review with the intention of improving the paper and authors would be expected to provide reasonable responses to the reviews. The papers should be identified as being the result of a SAS Forecasting Research Grant. In addition to reporting the research, the papers will be accompanied by a note explaining the objective for which the grant was made and how the research results advanced that objective. The editor or a member of the grant committee would write a preface to the paper evaluating the contribution of the research toward the objective for which the committee sponsored it. This provision should advance the goal of encouraging journals to publish "useful" work.

5. It is expected that the applications should include a clear statement of the project’s aims, together with an outline of how they are to be achieved. It should also contain a budget that may include a request for financial support to attend and present the paper in the International Symposium on Forecasting (ISF) to be held in 2012. To be consistent with the objectives of the IIF, the application should propose a scientific approach based on real data. This should normally include a comparison with other standard forecasting methods on withheld data. For prediction validations see, for instance, Makridakis, S., Wheelwright, S. C. and Hyndman, R. J. (1998), 3rd edition, John Wiley and Sons, or Diebold, F. X. (2007), 4th edition, Thomson South-Western.

6. Payment of the full grant will normally only be made on receipt of a draft paper describing the research or against receipted expenditure.

7. The awards of the SAS Forecasting Research Grants will be announced at the ISF general session and on the IIF website. This will advertise the program, call attention to the work of the recipients, and recognize SAS as the sponsor. SAS will also make announcements relative to these papers.

8. The grant committee will send an annual report (letter) to SAS explaining how the money was spent.

Applications should be submitted in electronic format to:

Pamela Stroud
Business Director
International Institute of Forecasters
Medford, MA USA
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The table below shows a small selection of Library of Congress subject headings related to forecasting.

Earliest Date Subject Heading Used

Books Catalogued by the Library of Congress

1952

Business Forecasting

1955

Economic Forecasting

1965

Employment Forecasting

1965

Population Forecasting

1966

Election Forecasting

1967

Stock Price Forecasting

1967

Technology Forecasting
1974 Crime Forecasting
1975 Agricultural Forecasting
1975 Box-Jenkins Forecasting
1977 Power Resources Forecasting
1978 Food Consumption Forecasting
1981 Education Forecasting
1981 Electric Power Forecasting
1981 Violence Forecasting
1982 Social Security Forecasting
1984 War Forecasting
1985 Nursing Forecasting
1990 Petroleum Reserves Forecasting
1997 Air Traffic Controllers Forecasting
1997 Genetics Forecasting
1997 Terrorism Forecasting
1998 Information Warfare Forecasting

This site offers the opportunity to evaluate new findings on forecasting methods. In particular, we seek peer review on papers in Principles of Forecasting. Peer review is vital to the development of principles.

Some people are skeptical about the use of peer review because it does such a poor job of selecting which papers should be published. However, it is useful in reducing the number of errors, improving the writing, and otherwise improving papers. If you would like evidence on this, see "Peer Review for Journals: Evidence on Quality Control, Fairness, and Innovation,"  Science and Engineering Ethics, 3 (1997), 63-84 – click to view the abstract [in html format] or download the full text of this paper [in PDF format].

Comments on books and articles will be submitted to an editor so that they can be checked for proper English, to ensure that there are no ad hominem arguments, and, in cases where the author is merely expressing an opinion, it should be clearly labeled as such. Those who submit comments are expected to obtain prior peer review before submitting them and to report on the peer review received. This information will be provided to readers who might prefer to read only material that has been peer-reviewed. Authors may be given a chance to respond to the comments before they are posted. The webmaster will decide where to place the commentary and possibly provide comments on the commentaries.

This section will also contain a summary of errors and corrections, either by outside reviewers or by authors for Principles of Forecasting. Finally, access will be provided to published reviews of Principles of Forecasting.

General Bibliographies

Forecasting Literature To 1978, with Annotations and Ratings
Forecasting Literature 1978-1985, with Annotations
Bibliography of Business and Economic Forecasting
Reviews of Important Papers in Forecasting


Forecasting Literature To 1978, with Annotations and Ratings

Over 500 references on forecasting [PDF] annotated and rated by J. Scott Armstrong . These are selected from books and articles that were discussed in the first edition of Long-range Forecasting, by J. Scott Armstrong.

The ratings are Professor Armstrong's judgments based on the following criteria:

  • Is the article relevant and important to the study of forecasting methods?
  • Does the article provide new and convincing information?
  • Is the article well written?
  • Has the article been superceded by more recent publications?

These factors were used to develop a four-star system which may be interpreted as follows:

****
Outstanding! Scores well on all criteria above. This work should be of great interest
***
Very good. Is important in some aspects.
**
Good. Contains something of value.
*
Marginal. Scores poorly on at least one of the four criteria or low on a number of criteria.

The distribution of the references was as follows:

Rating
Number
****
21
***
121
**
234
*
136

Note: To search for specific words and phrases in the Acrobat Reader, use the Find button (binoculars) and the Find Again button (binoculars with a right arrow).

Forecasting Literature 1978-1985, with Annotations

More than 270 books and articles – published primarily from 1977-1984 – are annotated in this updated bibliography; they were discussed in the second edition of Long-Range Forecasting, published in 1985. Some references prior to 1977 are also included, having been overlooked in the first edition of Long-Range Forecasting.

Bibliography of Business and Economic Forecasting

The Bibliography of Business and Economic Forecasting was published in 1981 (Fildes et al.) with a supplement in 1984 covering research publications for the 1971-1981 with additional references from the earlier years , particularly 1965-1970. Books were also included. What was unusual about the bibliography was that it was intensively keyworded, the choice of keywords deriving from my own research perspective in forecasting.

With Web of Science, Google Scholar, etc. these references are readily retrievable. However the keywords remain useful for getting a broader perspective on research relevant to forecasting beyond what can be found from simple electronic searches. In addition to the introductory material (first three items below) the bibliography is available in Endnote format and as an rtf file.


Reviews of Important Papers in Forecasting

Follow the links above to summaries and critiques (written by J. Scott Armstrong) of important articles on forecasting. Authors of the original papers were invited to comment. They did so in almost all cases and their suggestions were usually followed.

The table below lists major social science and science databases and their treatment of "forecasting" as a title and as a subject term. All of the databases listed (and several hundred others) are available from DIALOG Corporation. Another multiple database vendor through the Internet is OVID.

  Forecasting Papers as of 2000
  Start Date Titles  Subject Total  
ABI/Inform
Aerospace Data
Biol. & Agric.
BIOSIS PREVIEWS
CA SEARCH
CAB Abstracts
Conference Papers
   Index
Dissertation Abstracts
Ei Compendex
Energy SciTec
Enviroline
FLUIDEX
GEOBASE (TM)
Inside Conferences
INSPEC
JICST-Eplus
Mathsci
METADEX
Meteorology Abs
NTIS
Oceanic Abst.
Pascal
Pollution Abst.
SciSearch
Social SciSearch
Transport Res (TRIS)
Wilson Applied Sci
World Textiles
1972
1962
1983
1969
1967
1972
1973

1861
1970
1974
1975
1973
1980
1993
1969
1985
1940
1966
1970
1964
1964
1973
1970
1974
1972
1970
1983
1970
2,377
3,428
133
1065
481
2,635
1,567

1,150
3,502
3,532
221
440
1,778
2,180
4,273
1,561
2,102
214
2,989
2,350
359
3,800
158
3,474
3,563
1,094
499
87
9,054
21,918
336
514
287
5,779
N/A

N/A
12,905
59,789
2,895
258
1,446
824
16,912
7,866
N/A
2,013
12,664
27,591
329
33,692
864
609
496
5,964
3,744
1,494
9,409
22,335
441
1,505
592
7,197
1,567

1,150
14,958
60,505
3,024
585
2,672
2,874
18,601
9,081
2,102
2,167
12,877
28,099
632
35,632
950
3,832
3,834
6,312
3,966
1,524

I find Social SciSearch (the WEB version of the Social Science Citation Index) most useful. Social SciSearch also allows one to search on cited authors and their papers. A paper citing the publications of S. Makridakis probably deals in some way with forecasting. At the other extreme of usefulness, I find that the ABI/INFORM database contains too many papers of marginal value.

Search tips: I find the term "forecasting" to be most useful. "Forecast" is seldom successful and various forms of "predict" usually lead to fruitless searches.

Subcategories