Decades of early research on the genetics of depression were built on nonexistent foundations. How did that happen?
👓 Scientists rise up against statistical significance | Nature
Valentin Amrhein, Sander Greenland, Blake McShane and more than 800 signatories call for an end to hyped claims and the dismissal of possibly crucial effects.
👓 Cornell researcher who studied what we eat and why will step down after six studies are retracted | Los Angeles Times
Cornell University says Brian Wansink will step down at the end of the academic year after a review of his work turned up many problems.
👓 Sliced And Diced: The Inside Story Of How An Ivy League Food Scientist Turned Shoddy Data Into Viral Studies | Buzzfeed
Brian Wansink won fame, funding, and influence for his science-backed advice on healthy eating. Now, emails show how the Cornell professor and his colleagues have hacked and massaged low-quality data into headline-friendly studies to “go virally big time.”
This article is painful to read and has some serious implications for both science in general and the issue of repeat-ability. I suspect that this is an easily caught flagrant case and that it probably only scratches the surface. The increased competition in research and the academy is sure to create more cases of this in the future.
We really need people to begin publishing their negative results and doing a better job on understanding and practicing statistics. Science is already not “believed” by far too many in the United States, we really don’t need bad actors like this eroding the solid foundations we’ve otherwise built.