Category Archives: Research

Academic researchers and their ideas.

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Less Than Half of Major Social-Science Studies Are Reproducible, Analysis Says

A study has found that fewer than half of 100 major studies in the social sciences could be replicated to produce similar results, The New York Times reports. Published in Science, the analysis was conducted by a team of researchers led by Brian Nosek, a psychologist at the University of Virginia.

The team sought to reproduce 100 studies published in 2008, but in more than 60 cases, the results came out different. That’s not a result of fraud, the researchers say, but an indication that the evid…

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Northeastern U. Will Pay $2.7 Million to Settle Claims It Mishandled Research Funds

Northeastern University has agreed to pay a $2.7-million penalty to resolve allegations by the federal government that it didn’t adequately keep track of research funds from the National Science Foundation.

According to a news release from the U.S. Department of Justice, Northeastern improperly accounted for research funds awarded over a 10-year period to a physics professor then employed by the university, with some of the money being used for personal expenses. The department also says Northea…

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3 Military Psychologists Accuse Torture Investigator of ‘Bias’ and ‘Grandstanding’

Three Army psychologists have harshly criticized an independent investigation that found that the American Psychological Association had colluded with the Department of Defense in shaping ethics rules related to torture, accusing its author of “prosecutorial bias” and “grandstanding rhetoric.”

In a statement posted to an APA email list over the weekend, the three psychologists wrote that the 542-page report put together by David H. Hoffman, a former federal prosecutor, “ignores or distorts key f…

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Vanderbilt Releases More Information on Elusive Red-Tape Study

Vanderbilt University has released more information about its noted red-tape study, which for months has been trumpeted by some observers as evidence of smothering government regulation in higher education. The Chronicle has repeatedly requested access to the study, which asserts the university spent roughly $150 million to comply with regulations in 2013-14.

The information, released on Friday, takes the form of a fact sheet, a PowerPoint presentation, and a summary that reiterate key points re…

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U. of Oregon Graduate Student Admits to Falsifying Data for 4 Papers

A graduate student at the University of Oregon has admitted to faking the data behind four scientific papers, the blog Retraction Watch reports. David E. Anderson told the blog he had made an “error in judgment” in falsifying the data.

His former supervisor, the brain researcher Edward Awh, who now works at the University of Chicago, has requested that the papers be retracted.

“I take full responsibility for my actions, as they do not reflect the integrity of research conducted in the lab of Dr….

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UC-San Diego Wins Suit Against USC Over Control of Alzheimer’s Project

The University of California at San Diego has prevailed in an unusual lawsuit against the University of Southern California over control of a major project to study Alzheimer’s disease, the Los Angeles Times reported.

San Diego accused Paul S. Aisen, who resigned his position there in June, and the other defendants of improperly conspiring to transfer the Alzheimer’s study to Southern California, which is Dr. Aisen’s new employer. The defendants argued that it was commonplace for departing resea…

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Psychologist Implicated in APA’s Torture Report Resigns Academic Post

A former official at the American Psychological Association who was implicated in the controversy over the organization’s support for torture has resigned as provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Alliant International University.

The resignation of Russ Newman comes in the wake of an independent investigation, commissioned by the APA, that found that officials there coordinated with the Department of Defense to make sure psychologists could participate in often-brutal interro…

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Days After Leak of Damning Report, 3 APA Officials Announce Departures

[Updated (7/14/2015, 3:10 p.m.) with reactions to the announcement.]

The American Psychological Association announced on Tuesday that three of its longtime senior leaders would leave their posts. Their departures come in the wake of an independent investigation that found that APA officials worked closely with the Department of Defense to ensure that the association’s ethics policy permitted psychologists to participate in the military’s often-brutal interrogation program during the George W. Bu…

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House Passes Bill That Would Add $8.75 Billion to NIH Budget

The U.S. House of Representatives passed bipartisan legislation on Friday that would increase the National Institutes of Health’s budget by $8.75 billion over the next five years, The New York Times and The Washington Post reported on Friday.

The health-care bill, called 21st Century Cures (HR 6), is intended to hasten the development of new drugs and medical devices. If passed by the Senate and signed by President Obama, the legislation would break a budgetary logjam that has kept research spen…

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Psychological Association’s Board Urges Ban on Members’ Role in Military Interrogations

The American Psychological Association's headquarters, in Washington, D.C. (Creative Commons-licensed photo by Wikimedia user Oakstreetstudio.)The Board of Directors of the American Psychological Association has recommended that the organization ban psychologists from taking part in interrogations conducted by the military or intelligence services, a prohibition long sought by critics of the APA’s involvement with a Central Intelligence Agency program, widely viewed as practicing torture, under the administration of President George W. Bush.

That is the most striking recommendation in an internal document obtained by The Chronicle. It …