In other words, even if social scientists can replicate research results, there may be little agreement about what, if anything, they mean. Is it a good idea for governments to consult them on social policy?
John Rapley: That’s something that ‘physics envy’ can’t capture – that the social nature of human beings makes any laws of behaviour tentative and contextual. In fact, the very term ‘social science’ is probably best seen as an oxymoron.
The distinction is that low-quality papers might happen to fall through the cracks now and then and a cherry picker could gin up an indictment of a whole field unjustly. BUT when a number of hoax papers get accepted by various journals, that points to deeper systemic rot. Especially when the social science profs are enraged rather than ashamed
The rap is “research misconduct,” of all things. Oh and get this: “An academic journal is continuing to sell a viral article on “rape culture” and “queer performativity” in Portland dog parks despite expressing concerns about the veracity of the research. Veracity? It was a genuine hoax, that’s what kind of veracity it had.
But maybe this historian of science’s idea can’t work. Many doctors are prepared to slay beautiful theories for the sake of the lives of their patients. Have social scientists any similar motivation?
Coyne is distressed by the fact that the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), which supports people who are being jackbooted by authoritarian leftists, is supported by… Templeton.
Sexton: Similarly, the experts Singal contacted said the use of fake data still counts as data fabrication even if the dataset was obviously meant to be part of a satirical hoax. So there may be two grounds on which this IRB could decide to punish Boghossian.
Even the fact that Boghossian is an evangelistic atheist banging the drum for “science,” won’t save him from the consequences of exposing ridiculous social sciences.
Boghossian’s breach of ethics was that he was supposed to get the consent of the journal editors before hoaxing them because they are human subjects. No, really. That is the explanation.
One doesn’t mean to be unkind. But we hardly need “evolution” to know that giving a bully a task that builds self-esteem will distract him from bullying.
Probably not wanted either: The latest victim of an academic mobbing is 28-year-old social scientist Noah Carl who has been awarded a Toby Jackman Newton Trust Research Fellowship at St Edmund’s College at the University of Cambridge. Rarely has the power asymmetry between the academic mob and its victim been so stark. Dr Carl is […]
Confession: Some of us never took evolutionary psychology (a discipline whose subject died a very long time ago but allegedly lives on in all of us) seriously enough to wonder if it could actually create controversies in psychology. Apparently so: In terms of the political bias among social psychologists, Buss and von Hippel found that 95 […]
It’s becoming harder to ignore the stench: The drive recruited labs around the world to try to replicate the results of 28 classic and contemporary psychology experiments. Only half were reproduced successfully using a strict threshold for significance that was set at P < 0.0001 (the P value is a common test for judging the […]
Some of us have a perhaps unhealthy fascination with just how bad the social sciences have become. We hope we can justify our amazement (and hilarity) over the easy hoaxes and all that on the grounds that real science also faces a war on math (“say goodbye to x and y”). Watching what happens to […]
Even the most alert reader may not recall our piece on how gender theory can turn a dog’s life into a, well, dog’s life: Turns out, it may have been another Sokal hoax: Something has gone wrong in the university—especially in certain fields within the humanities. Scholarship based less upon finding truth and more upon […]