David Affleck

Photo of Affleck, David

David Affleck

Associate Professor of Biometrics; Director of the Inland Northwest Growth & Yield Cooperative; Chair, Department of Forest Management

Personal Summary

I think it’s fair to say that my upbringing on a nearly treeless expanse of Canadian prairie gave rise to my interests in forests and forestry. These interests took me to the University of British Columbia where I first studied forest science, specializing in forest soils, and then went on to obtain a master’s degree in forest biometrics. Following this, I worked for several years as a biometrician with a forestry consulting firm in B.C., which gave me the opportunity to work in resource inventory design and analysis, on forest growth modeling, and on diverse quantitative and statistical modeling projects. But eventually I was drawn back to academics and moved to the east coast to earn a Ph.D. in biometrics from Yale University.

My research is focused on the development of probability sampling methods and statistical modeling techniques for natural resource assessment and monitoring. Recently my work has been directed to the design of sampling strategies for forest inventory and the survey of downed woody materials, and to the application of nonlinear mixture models for characterizing forest growth and mortality. Results from this research have been published in both the forestry and statistical literature.


Ph.D., Forest Biometrics, Yale University, 2006
M.Phil., Forest Biometrics, Yale University, 2005
M.Sc., Forest Biometrics, University of British Columbia, 2001
B.Sc., Forest Soils, University of British Columbia, 1998

Courses Taught

Biometrics (FORS 201)
Graduate Seminar in Forestry (FORS 594)
Sampling Methods (FORS505)
Statistical Models for Ecological Data Analysis (FORS 538)


Research Interests

Forest inventory and sampling strategies for environmental resources
Statistical modeling of longitudinal and spatially-structured ecological data
Development and integration of individual tree and stand growth models
Inferential methods in environmental statistics

Selected Publications

Affleck, D.L.R. (2008) A line intersect distance sampling strategy for downed wood inventory. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 38(8): 2262 – 2273.

Affleck, D.L.R. (2007) Mixed and modified Poisson models for the analysis of stand-level mortality. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 36(11): 2994 – 3006.

Valentine, H.T., M.J. Ducey, J.H. Gove, A. Lanz, & D.L.R. Affleck (2006) Corrections for cluster-plot slop. Forest Science 52(1): 55 – 66.

Affleck, D.L.R., T.G. Gregoire, & H.T. Valentine (2005) Edge effects in line intersect sampling with segmented transects. Journal of Agricultural, Biological, and Environmental Statistics 10(4): 460 – 477.

Affleck, D.L.R., T.G. Gregoire, & H.T. Valentine (2005) Design unbiased estimation in line intersect sampling using segmented transects. Environmental and Ecological Statistics 12(2): 139 – 154.

Gregoire, T.G., D.L.R. Affleck, & H.T. Valentine (2004) Conditioning inference on line orientation in line intersect sampling. In Forest Inventory and Planning in Nordic Countries, Proceedings of SNS Meeting at Sjusjøun, Norway, September 6-8, 2004, K. Hobbelstad ed., NIJOS Rapport 9/2005, Norwegian Institute of Land Inventory, pp. 121 – 129.


Conference Presentations and Invited Lectures:


Affleck, D.L.R. (2008) Line Intersect Distance Sampling. XXIV International Biometrics Conference, Dublin, 20 – 25 July 2008.

Affleck, D.L.R. (2007) The Cofrenquency Principle: An Historical Aside? Western Mensurationists' Meeting, Kelowna, B.C., 25 – 26 June 2007.

Affleck, D.L.R. (2007) Characterizing Density-Dependent and Density-Independent Mortality in Even-Aged Stands: A Mixture Model Approach. Inland Northwest Growth & Yield Cooperative Technical Meeting, 16 January 2007.

Affleck, D.L.R. (2006) Statistical Models for Even-Aged Stand Mortality: Describing the Distributional Features of the Data. University of Montana, Department of Forest Management, 14 April 2006.

Affleck, D.L.R., T.G. Gregoire, & H.T. Valentine. (2006) Segmented Line Transects, Odd-Shaped Particles, and Unbiased Inference. National Down Woody Materials Inventory Summit, Durham, NH, 6 April 2006.

Affleck, D.L.R. (2006) Mixed Poisson Models and the Analysis of Heterogeneous Tree Mortality Data with Many Zeros. University of British Columbia Okanagan, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, 27 March 2006.

Affleck, D.L.R. (2005) Stand-level mortality models: data distributions and regression models. Northeastern Forest Mensurationist Meeting, Freeport, Maine, 2-3 November 2005.

Affleck, D.L.R., T.G. Gregoire, & H.T. Valentine (2005) Boundary overlap corrections for segmented line transects. Western Mensurationists’ Meeting, Hilo, Hawaii, 6-8 July 2005.

Valentine, H.T., M.J. Ducey, J.H. Gove, A. Lanz, & D.L.R. Affleck (2005) Corrections for cluster-plot slop. Western Mensurationists’ Meeting, Hilo, Hawaii, 6-8 July 2005.

Affleck, D.L.R. (2004) On the performance of Masuyama’s distance count sampling strategy. Northeastern Forest Mensurationist Meeting, Yale-Myers Research Forest, Connecticut, 28-29 October 2005.

Affleck, D.L.R., T.G. Gregoire, & H.T. Valentine (2004) A sampling protocol for design-unbiased estimation in line intersect sampling using segmented transects. American Statistical Association, Joint Statistical Meetings, Toronto, Ontario, 8-12 August 2004.

Affleck, D.L.R. (2000) Spatial analysis of Nelder systematic spacing trials. Western Mensurationists’ Meeting, Whitefish, Montana, 19-20 June 2000.