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Posts uit mei, 2014 tonen

My Take on Replication

There are quite a few comments on my previous post already, both on this blog and elsewhere. That post was my attempt to make sense of the discussion that all of a sudden dominated my Twitter feed (I’d been offline for several days). Emotions were runing high and invective was flying left and right. I wasn’t sure what the cause of this fracas was and tried to make sense of where people were coming from and suggest a way forward.  Many of the phrases in the post that I used to characterize the extremes of the replication continuum are paraphrases of what I encountered online rather than figments of my own imagination. What always seems to happen when you write about extremes, though, is that people rush in to declare themselves moderates. I appreciate this. I’m a moderate myself. But if we were all moderates, then the debate wouldn’t have spiralled out of control. And it was this derailment of the conversation that I was trying to understand. But before (or more likely after

Trying to Understand both Sides of the Replication Discussion

I missed most of the recent discussion on replication because I’m on vacation. However, the weather’s not very inviting this morning in southern Spain, so I thought I’d try to catch up a bit on the fracas, and try to see where both sides are coming from. My current environment induces me to take a few steps back from it all. Let’s see where this goes. Rather than helping the discussion move forward, I might, in fact, inadvertently succeed in offending everyone involved. Basically, the discussion is between what I’ll call the Replicators and the Replication Critics Reactionaries . I realize that the Replicators care about more than just replication. The Reactionaries are reactionary in the sense that they  Critics are opposing the replication movement. The Replicators and the Reactionaries  Critics are the endpoints of what probably is close to a continuum. Who are the Replicators? As best as I can tell, they are a ragtag group of (1) mid-career-to-senior methodologists, (2)

Are we Intuitively Cooperative (or are we Moving the Goalposts)?

Are we an intuitively cooperative species? A study that was published a few years ago in Nature suggests that indeed our initial inclination is to cooperate with others. We are only selfish if we are allowed to reflect. How did the researchers obtain these (perhaps counterintuitive) results? Subjects were given an amount of money and had to decide how much of this money, if any, they wanted to contribute to a common project. The subjects were told that they collaborated on this project with three other unknown players whose contributions were not known. They were told that each of the four players received a bonus that was calculated as follows: (additional money – own contribution) + 2*(sum of the contributions)/4. So you get the highest personal payoff by being selfish and contributing nothing to the common good, regardless of the total contribution of the other three players. A random half of the subjects were required to make a decision on the amount of their contribu