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Cancer reproducibility project scales back ambitions

The Reproducibility Project: Cancer Biology aims to get a better, quantitative estimate of the reproducibility of important work and to understand the challenges such efforts present. Begun in 2013, the project is run jointly by the Center for Open Science (COS) in Charlottesville, Virginia, and Science Exchange in Palo Alto, California.

Bioethics and the reproducibility crisis

According to the mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel, who is linked to bioethics through his bioethicist brother Ezekiel Emanuel, "You never let a serious crisis go to waste." In this case the crisis is the reproducibility of published results in the biological and medical sciences. According to a recent comment in Nature, "An unpublished 2015 survey by the American Society for Cell Biology found that more than two-thirds of respondents had on at least one occasion been unable to reproduce published results. Biomedical researchers from drug companies have reported that one-quarter or fewer of high-profile papers are reproducible."

Reproducibility in science — where the MRC comes in

The MRC and a group of partner organisations have today published a report and joint statement about the reproducibility and reliability of research, and what can be done to improve them. Here, Jim Smith, MRC Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Strategy, thinks about how discussions of reproducibility offer us the opportunity to improve the way science is done.