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Science Type 1 versus Science Type 2
“Inquiry of a scientific mature, I stipulate, aims to be cumulative, evidence-based (empirical), falsifiable, generalizing, nonsubjective, replicable, rigorous, skeptical, systematic, transparent, and grounded in rational argument. There are differences of opinion over whether, or to what extent, science lives up to these high ideals. Even so, these are the ideals to which natural and social scientists generally aspire, and they help to define the enterprise in a general way and to demarcate it from other realms.” (Gerring 2012:11).
In your examples of purported failures of peer review, my eye was caught by the Virginia Steen-McIntyre reference. That's a can of worms!
Originally posted by Klassified
I have not been through the process. Although the last time I had a hypothesis examined by a "peer", she found all kinds of errors.
But when you're looking at days worth of reviewing time. I can only imagine someone thinking "how can I weed out some of this, and lessen this mountain staring me in the face?"
The reviewer doesn't need to know the authors name, or their background.
Reviewers should have guidelines established, and personal opinions should be noted as such. I would like to say reviewers should be certified by a board.
The problem is, so many who are not scientists, or academics, like myself (I'm self-employed, and I consult, as well as fix problems for consumers and businesses relating to computers and Audio-visual.) rely on peer review as something akin to the "good housekeeping" seal of approval. However, the more I read, and talk to a few folks I know, the more I have found that isn't what it is at all.
Too much has been made of peer review to the public. And not enough measures have been taken among academia to insure that good theories don't slip and fall through the cracks, because of the faults and limitations of the review process.
Evidently, those on ATS who see peer-review as the gospel, don't read those letters, or go to conferences.
Did you rework the hypothesis after that?
I'm currently doing my PhD dissertation, and it's a hair-puller. I gave the committee MY research design (and grand ideas) and they came after it with chainsaws and hatchets. I moaned and wailed because they whacked down my Grand Idea into something that I thought was trivial -- BUT -- when I took their approach, I found that what they were pointing me at is a nice little foundational concept.
What'll kill a paper first is Bad Reseach Design (or if it's not explained well.) After that, it's Bad Statistical Analysis.
Research Design transparency is CRITICAL. If we can't tell how you did the research, we can't prove that you really have something good, and we can't confirm what you did by replicating your research. In a recent paper presented to the City of Dallas by the Centers for Disease Control (their assessment of the West Nile Virus aerial spraying), the CDC went over how they gathered and measured data in very great detail before they gave their conclusions. While the "science-y stuff" probably put everyone to sleep, it told me that the CDC didn't just show up and blow smoke at everyone. It confirmed some of the data I had gathered independently and highlighted the real problems cities have in dealing with mosquitoes (they don't know how to collect data or what to do with it when they get it.)
When a paper is passed for review, the names of the authors and their affiliations NEVER show up anywhere on the review copies.
"The editor looks at the title of the paper and sends it to two friends whom the editor thinks know something about the subject. If both advise publication the editor sends it to the printers. If both advise against publication the editor rejects the paper. If the reviewers disagree the editor sends it to a third reviewer and does whatever he or she advises. This pastiche—which is not far from systems I have seen used—is little better than tossing a coin..."
Perhaps it's just that the failures are so loudly talked about, and the millions (literally) of good papers are ignored?
How do you know they are "good theories"?
Look around the board at all the theories you see here.
So... how do you know good ideas are suppressed?
My hope for this thread was just to shine a more realistic light on the workings of the peer review process.