July 22, 2013
Nate Silver – Renowned Statistician, Author and Founder of FiveThirtyEight – Joins ESPN in Multi-Faceted Role
Will Also Contribute Regularly to ABC News Platforms
Leading statistician and best-selling author Nate Silver will join ESPN later this year, bringing his unique brand of creativity, journalism and statistical analysis through his award winning website, FiveThirtyEight.com. The site’s new incarnation will allow Silver to return to his sports roots while expanding his approach to numerous disciplines, including economics, culture, science and technology, and other topics. FiveThirtyEight will also continue to provide data-driven coverage of politics, including forecasts of the 2014 and 2016 elections. The site will extend ESPN’s leadership in using data and analytics in its cross-platform storytelling.
Silver will serve as the editor-in-chief of the site and will build a team of journalists, editors, analysts and contributors in the coming months. Much like Grantland, which ESPN launched in 2011, the site will retain an independent brand sensibility and editorial point-of-view, while interfacing with other websites in the ESPN and Disney families. The site will return to its original URL, www.FiveThirtyEight.com.
Silver’s reach will also extend to television and other ESPN platforms, where he will contribute to a wide variety of programs. He will showcase his work regularly on ABC News outlets as well, and during election years and key political events, Silver will provide political insights and analysis to ABC News.
Since 2010, FiveThirtyEight has been hosted on The New York Times website. Silver and other members of the FiveThirtyEight leadership team will be based in New York City.
Said ESPN President John Skipper, “Nate is one of the country’s brightest talents and his insight, journalistic integrity and creativity — all traits essential for creating compelling, quality content — have awed and entertained diverse audiences. Nate brings a unique fan base to ESPN, where he will curate a cross-platform, cross-discipline experience with a fresh take on the intersection of sports, culture, technology, economics and politics that will be provocative and completely different than anything else in the marketplace today.”
Silver added, “This is a dream job for me. I’m excited to expand FiveThirtyEight’s data-driven approach into new areas, while also reuniting with my love of sports. I’m thrilled that we’re going to be able to create jobs for a great team of journalists, writers and analysts. And I think that I’ve found the perfect place to do it. The variety and quality of the assets ESPN and ABC News presented to me was compelling and unparalleled. I can’t wait to get started.”
Ben Sherwood, President of ABC News, said, “With great enthusiasm, we welcome Nate Silver and we predict with 100 percent confidence that his unique voice and penetrating insights will contribute mightily to ABC News coverage of politics and many topics.”
Silver has established himself as today’s leading statistician through his innovative analyses of political polling. He first gained national attention during the 2008 presidential election, when he correctly predicted the results of the presidential election in 49 of 50 states, along with all 35 U.S. Senate races. In 2012, FiveThirtyEight predicted the election outcome in all 50 states. FiveThirtyEight has made Nate the public face of statistical analysis and political forecasting.
His most recent book, The Signal and The Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail – But Some Don’t, is a New York Times bestseller. Before he came to politics, Nate established his credentials as an analyst of baseball statistics. He developed a widely acclaimed system called PECOTA (Player Empirical Comparison and Optimization Test Algorithm), which predicts player performance, career development, and seasonal winners and losers. He is a co-author of a series of books on baseball statistics, which include Mind Game, Baseball Between the Numbers, and It Ain’t Over ’til It’s Over. Nate has written for ESPN.com, Sports Illustrated, Slate, Baseball Prospectus, Newsweek, The New York Post, and The Los Angeles Times.
Silver has earned a series of accolades. Most recently, Fast Company chose Nate as No. 1 on their list of the 100 Most Creative People in Business 2013. He was among TIME’s 100 Most Influential People of 2009 and Rolling Stone’s 100 Agents of Change. In 2012 and 2013, FiveThirtyEight won Webby Awards as the “Best Political Blog.”
Chris LaPlaca Chris.LaPlaca@ESPN.com
Amy Phillips Amy.Phillips@ESPN.com