Sarah M Nusser

Sarah M Nusser

  • Professor Emerita
Sarah Nusser is professor emerita of statistics at Iowa State University (ISU). She recently served as research professor at University of Virginia’s Biocomplexity Institute (Social and Decision Analytics Division) and senior fellow with the Association of American Universities (AAU). Nusser also previously served as Iowa State University vice president for research and directed the ISU Center for Survey Statistics and Methodology (CSSM) for 15 years.

Nusser’s current research focuses on improving the reusability and impact of publicly accessible research data. She leads an NSF-funded study to develop a framework that describes factors and practices that promote impact and reusability for research data. She is actively involved in national efforts to promote open science, transparency, and public access to research data. Nusser serves as chair of the National Academies of Science Board on Research Data and Information, is a member of the NIST Research Data Framework Steering Committee, and held leadership roles supporting the AAU-Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) initiative on Accelerating Public Access to Research Data (APARD).

Nusser is also involved in a University of Virginia Biocomplexity Institute project funded by the Census Bureau to envision a new purpose-driven approach to answering timely policy questions based on a Curated Data Enterprise that integrates Census Bureau and other data assets for analysis.

Nusser's prior research focused on survey statistics and methodology for land-based and population-based surveys, including sampling and estimation for longitudinal natural resource surveys, measurement error models for dietary intake and physical activity data, and geospatial methods for sample frame listing and natural resource surveys. Nusser directed statistics and methodology research and development for the annual USDA National Resources Inventory (NRI) program for 22 years through her affiliation with CSSM.

Nusser is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Statistical Association, an elected member of the International Statistical Institute, and has served on numerous scientific panels, advisory committees and governing boards.


  • Ph.D., Statistics, Iowa State University, 1990
  • M.S., Botany, North Carolina State University, 1983
  • B.S., Botany, University of Wisconsin, 1980

Area of Expertise: Statistics, Open science