Against academic sanctions

Editors of international academic journals are currently discussing banning contributions from academics affiliated with Russian institutions. I don’t normally talk about my war experiences, but my ex-Yugoslav perspective might be valuable here because I presume it is close to what many Russian colleagues in academia are going through right now. I will assume that the … [Read more…]

eLife’s new open review model

eLife is trying out a new model of reviewing, that includes obligatory preprints, obligatory open data and code, as well as open reviews. You can read more about it here: I was lucky enough to review an article under this new model. The openness of reviews is not yet obligatory, but I opted for it. … [Read more…]

Going into industry

Spoiler alert: I didn’t. But I thought about it long and hard. My reasons include a mix of the usual and unusual. I struggled to stay afloat moving from country to country and from job to job during some exceptionally difficult childbearing years. The stress took so much out of me that I no longer … [Read more…]

Oxford Reproducibility Lectures: Florian Markowetz

The Oxford Reproducibility Lectures were largely concerned with trustworthiness of scientific findings, as well as carving out more robust research practices. We discussed adequately powering one’s studies, statistical methods that are better aligned to typical research questions, how to pre-register experiments, how to deal with the garden of forking paths, as well as setting standards … [Read more…]

Oxford Reproducibility Lectures: Tom Nichols

At the beginning of my postdoc, I told my supervisor I’d like to learn some fMRI on top of my usual electrophysiology. “Wonderful”, she said, “I have just the dataset for you!” It was a straightforward research question with a fairly simple manipulation and it also happened to be along the lines of my interests. … [Read more…]

Oxford Reproducibility Lectures: Laura Fortunato

When I was an undergrad, I heard how Raymond Cattell (if memory serves me well) plastered his entire office, ceiling included, with papers on which he calculated the factor analysis involved in his theory of 16 basic personality traits. Hundreds of questionnaires with many items, maths to pull out the common variance and reduce the … [Read more…]

Oxford Reproducibility Lectures: Ana Todorovic

Scientific methods and their associated research questions form a variety of fits. Take the reproducibility crisis in behavioural psychology. In social psychology the crisis is quite prominent, with textbook findings being actively questioned. In cognitive psychology (inflated effect sizes notwithstanding) there is less of a feeling of crisis, and yet, the two fields use similar … [Read more…]

Oxford Reproducibility Lectures: Chas Bountra

There are gasps of indignation when academics hear that pharmaceutical industry doesn’t trust academic research all that much. We think of the big pharma people as the bad guys, the conscience-free predators that prioritise profit over our health and wellbeing. Academics, on the other hand, care about the truth. They don’t aim to get rich, … [Read more…]