Jeremy Berg, the incoming editor-in-chief of Science magazine, will be grappling with a number of issues plaguing science and science publishing when he takes over that role, Retraction Watch's Shannon Palus writes. Berg has previously supported efforts to bolster reproducibility and transparency, Palus notes. He tells her that there are a number of efforts aimed at improving reproducibility underway at Science, but as he hasn't started the position yet — he's to take the helm in July — he needs to catch up on what's already been done. He says various issues could be behind the irreproducibility problem and, to be effective, any response has to be tailored to that issue.
Researchers tease out different definitions of a crucial scientific term. A semantic confusion is clouding one of the most talked-about issues in research. Scientists agree that there is a crisis in reproducibility, but they can’t agree on what 'reproducibility' means.
A huge audience of psychologists, students and researchers was drawn to the British Psychological Society debate in London about the reproducibility and replication crisis in psychology. After Brian Nosek and the Open Science Collaboration outlined the difficulty in reproducing psychological findings, the BPS, the Experimental Psychology Society and the Association of Heads of Psychology Departments hoped to host an upbeat and positive debate in the area. Ella Rhodes reports from a British Psychological Society debate.
Here is the past week’s career-related news from across the Science family of publications.
Two new research papers on scabies and tapeworms published today showcase a new collaboration with protocols.io. This demonstrates a new way to share scientific methods that allows scientists to better repeat and build upon these complicated studies on difficult-to-study parasites. It also highlights a new means of writing all research papers with citable methods that can be updated over time.
A few years ago, the topic of whether scientific papers are reproducible or not would have been an odd thing to see in a newspaper. But not any more: both the popular media and the journals themselves have been trying to deal with the topic, amid reports that far too many results can’t be replicated. Large scale efforts have begun to examine key papers in experimental psychology, among other areas. Reports from the biopharma industry about the numbers of interesting biology papers that don’t hold up have stirred alarm as well. But as far as I can tell, chemistry has largely escaped the current rounds of criticism.