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Whitney Murphy

Pronouns: She/Her

Senior Statistician
Whitney is a statistical manager on government health surveys with expertise in sample design and implementation.

Whitney is a principal statistician for NORC at the University of Chicago. With 25 years of experience in survey methodology and statistical operations, Whitney has expertise in sample design, data collection operations, and nonresponse bias. She currently acts as Statistical Manager for the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey (MCBS), a large-scale, continuous, in-person, longitudinal survey of a representative national sample of the Medicare population. She is the lead architect of the sample design and coordinates the sampling, weighting, and imputation tasks for the project.

Whitney has worked as Task Leader for Sampling and Weighting for the Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health across the U.S. (REACH U.S.) project, a large-scale address-based sampling (ABS) multi-mode survey, as Director of Sample Operations and Management for the National Immunization Survey, and as lead statistician for REACH 2010. She was also lead statistician for six rounds of the U.S. News and World Report’s annual Best Hospitals study. Her areas of special methodological expertise include undercoverage issues with respect to hard-to-reach populations and increasing interview response rates.

Some of Whitney’s significant contributions have included standardizing procedures to determine sample size needs and optimal sample composition and leading analytic work resulting in innovative advances in telephone sampling methodologies. She has coauthored Statistical Analysis Reports for the Department of Education, published invited and contributed papers in the Proceedings of the American Statistical Association’s Joint Statistical Meetings and the Conference on Health Survey Research Methods, and given numerous presentations at conferences for organizations such as the American Association for Public Opinion Research and the American Statistical Association. Her research has focused on undercoverage issues related to hard-to-reach populations, optimizing call strategies for RDD surveys, ABS methodology, and nonresponse bias.

Project Contributions

National Immunization Surveys (NIS)

One of the nation’s largest phone surveys and the gold standard for data on U.S. immunization rates


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases

National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997

A new, younger cohort of the nation’s preeminent survey of labor force participation from teen years to retirement


U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics