The Applied Statistics Division came into being from September 1996, in place of the Applied Statistics, Surveys and Computing Division, following a re-organization of the divisions in the Indian Statistical Institute. The former Computer Science Unit was renamed as the Applied Statistics Unit. 
For nearly ten years, the Applied Statistics Unit had been the only unit under the Applied Statistics Division. There are now three other units in the Division: (1) Interdisciplinary Statistical Research Unit (ISRU), Kolkata, (2) Applied and Official Statistics Unit (AOSU), NE- Centre-Tezpur and (3) Applied Statistics Unit (ASU), Chennai. 

The Professor-in-Charge of the Applied Statistics Division is Prof. Sumitra Purkayastha. 

The Head of the Applied Statistics Unit is Prof. Subhamoy Maitra. 

Scientists of the Applied Statistics Unit (ASU) conduct research in various areas of statistics, mathematics and computer science, with special emphasis on applications. They regularly conduct research and development projects, sometimes in collaboration with scientists of other units of ISI and/or other organisations. Currently, there are collaborative on-going projects with the Theoretical Statistics and Mathematics Division and the Social Sciences Division.

ASU holds a Tuesday seminar series with speakers both from within and outside the Unit. 

The faculty of ASU are also involved in various teaching and training activities. Apart from participating in the teaching of all the regular courses of the Institute held at Calcutta, they also conduct a Statistical Traineeship programme for fresh master's degree-holders in Statistics. Intensive Course on Programming and Application of Electronic  ASU is fully responsible for conducting the short-term course Computers. This unit regularly conducts teaching/training programmes like winter/summer schools North-East Training, UGC-sponsored refresher courses and workshops. 

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