NSF Gets an Earful about Replication

Interesting stuff here …. I wonder about possible connections with H.R. 4012 (https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/113/hr4012/text).


I spent last Thursday and Friday (February 20 and 21) at an NSF workshop concerning the replicability of research results. It was chaired by John Cacioppo and included about 30 participants including such well-known contributors to the discussion as Brian Nosek, Hal Pashler, Eric Eich, and Tony Greenwald, to name a few.  Participants also included officials from NIH, NSF, the White House Office on Science and Technology and at least one private foundation. I was invited, I presume, in my capacity as Past-President of SPSP and chair of an SPSP task force on research practices which recently published a report on non-retracted PSPB articles by investigators who retracted articles elsewhere, and a set of recommendations for research and educational practice, which was just published in PSPR.

Committees, task forces and workshops – whatever you call them – about replicability issues have become almost commonplace.  The SPSP Task Force was preceded…

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Feature: The REF – how was it for you? | Features | Times Higher Education

Feature: The REF – how was it for you? | Features | Times Higher Education.

Inside Higher Ed | A call to embrace silos

An interview with Jerry A. Jacobs, a professor of sociology at the University of Pennsylvania regarding his new book, In Defense of Disciplines: Interdisciplinarity and Specialization in the Research University (University of Chicago Press). The article also features a short reply by Robert Frodeman, professor of philosophy and founding director of the Center for the Study of Interdisciplinarity at the University of North Texas, and author of Sustainable Knowledge: A Theory of Interdisciplinarity (Macmillan), which critiques ‘disciplinarity’.

Knowledge kills action – Why principles should play a limited role in policy making

This essay argues that principles should play a limited role in policy making. It first illustrates the dilemma of timely action in the face of uncertain unintended consequences. It then introduces the precautionary and proactionary principles as different alignments of knowledge and action within the policymaking process. The essay next considers a cynical and a hopeful reading of the role of these principles in public policy debates. We argue that the two principles, despite initial appearances, are not all that different when it comes to formulating public policy. We also suggest that allowing principles to determine our actions undermines the sense of autonomy necessary for true action.