RESEARCH ETHICS AND MISCONDUCT
- An editorial by Bernard Lo and Rita Redberg discusses ethical issues in recently published research in which abnormal lab values were not conveyed to research participants: “Should a study with an ethical lapse be published?…Many journals will not publish research with grave ethical violations, such as lack of informed consent, lack of institutional review board (IRB) approval, or scientific misconduct. However, if violations are contested or less serious, as in this study, the ethical consensus has been to publish valid findings, together with an editorial to raise awareness of the ethical problems and stimulate discussion of how to prevent or address them.”
Addressing Ethical Lapses in Research (JAMA) [formerly free, now first PDF page visible]
- What should research misconduct be called? “At the heart of the debate is the history of the term. In the U.S., in particular, lobbying from scientists dating to the 1980s has resulted in the term “misconduct” being codified to only refer to the cardinal sins of falsification, fabrication, and plagiarism. This has left lesser offenses, often categorized as “questionable research practices,” relatively free from scrutiny. Nicholas Steneck, a research ethicist at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, calls the term “artificial:”
RESEARCH REPORTING AND STATISTICS
- Hilda Bastian provides 5 tips for avoiding P value potholes: commonly encountered problems with how P values are used and interpreted.
5 Tips for Avoiding P-Value Potholes (Absolutely Maybe blog)
- Videos on research methods related to epidemiology, by Greg Martin, MD, MPH, MBA (University of Witwatersrand, Ireland) — basic but useful for anyone wanting a quick well-done overview on a variety of research topics.
- For a bit of humor, The Five Diseases of Academic Publishing.
Got “significosis?” Here are the five diseases of academic publishing (Retraction Watch blog)
- Acceptance rates for journals applying for membership to OASPA: “Between 2013 and 2015 we accepted fewer than 25% of the total number of applications we received. Some from 2016 are still undergoing review, but we expect the number of accepted applications for last year to fall below 10% once all are concluded. “
- Overcoming nonreproducibility in basic and preclinical research, by John Ioannidis: “The evidence for nonreproducibility in basic and preclinical biomedical research is compelling. Accumulating data from diverse subdisciplines and types of experimentation suggest numerous problems that can create a fertile ground for nonreproducibility. For example, most raw data and protocols are often not available for in-depth scrutiny and use by other scientists. The current incentive system rewards selective reporting of success stories.“
Acknowledging and Overcoming Nonreproducibility in Basic and Preclinical Research (JAMA) [formerly free, now first PDF page visible]
- Research reported in newspapers has poor replication validity: “Journalists preferentially cover initial findings although they are often contradicted by meta-analyses and rarely inform the public when they are disconfirmed.“
WAME published a new statement on Identifying Predatory or Pseudo-Journals.
WAME Newsletter #2, original version circulated February 23, 2017. Identified (in part) from Retraction Watch, Stat News, and Linked In Global Health. Providing the links and information does not imply WAME’s endorsement.