The inflation of Type I error rates is thought to be one of the causes of the replication crisis. Questionable research practices such as p-hacking are thought to inflate Type I error rates above their nominal level, leading to unexpectedly high levels of false positives in the literature and, consequently, unexpectedly low replication rates. In this article, I offer an alternative view.
In a recent article published in Synthese, philosopher of science Pekka Syrjänen asks “does a theory become better confirmed if it fits data that was not used in its construction versus if it was specifically designed to fit the data?”
I contrast Popper's (1983, 2002) theory testing approach with that of Lakatos (1978) and a related approach called naïve methodological falsificationism. I conclude that the replication crisis is least problematic in the Lakatosian approach.
A long-read guest essay by Tom Hostler on how the scientific reform movement aligns with John Ziman's concept of "post academic research".
In this new article, I consider questionable research practices in the field of metascience. A questionable metascience practice (QMP) is a research practice, assumption, or perspective that’s been questioned by several commentators as being potentially problematic for metascience and/or the science reform movement. I discuss 10 QMPs that relate to criticism, replication, bias, generalization, and the characterization of science.