U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Science and Technology
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 11-24-2014, 10:16 PM
 
260 posts, read 245,812 times
Reputation: 273

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by 303Guy View Post
The thread title starts with "Trust issues with Science and bias". Funding of science research projects is very definitely on topic.
Cause and effect, you don't see it ?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 11-25-2014, 04:50 AM
Yac
 
5,874 posts, read 6,290,826 times
You guys are right, and I apologize. I just don't want this to become yet another field of partisan battle and I feared it would turn into one.
Yac.
__________________
Forum Rules
City-Data.com homepage
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-25-2014, 05:29 AM
 
Location: Westwood, MA
3,448 posts, read 4,350,324 times
Reputation: 4451
I don't think the funding issue is quite as clear-cut as it might seem to a lay person. While there certainly are paid research studies, a large portion of funding is awarded through competitive grants. A funding agency may have directions or goals, but they often aren't searching for a particular conclusion.

There are serious issues, though. Part of the problem is that while the funding is competitive, it's usually judged by people established in the field. This makes proposals that are unusual or unorthodox more difficult to get funded. It can also start to ossify orthodoxies.

The real issue I see with the current system is that novelty is prized over correctness. There is essentially no incentive to reproduce results unless it's in the furtherance of a newer, better idea. Many of the recent controversies in science have been at the ends of this effect, where novelty becomes more important than truth.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-25-2014, 11:52 AM
 
7,192 posts, read 5,261,073 times
Reputation: 7838
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayrandom View Post
I don't think the funding issue is quite as clear-cut as it might seem to a lay person. While there certainly are paid research studies, a large portion of funding is awarded through competitive grants. A funding agency may have directions or goals, but they often aren't searching for a particular conclusion.

There are serious issues, though. Part of the problem is that while the funding is competitive, it's usually judged by people established in the field. This makes proposals that are unusual or unorthodox more difficult to get funded. It can also start to ossify orthodoxies.

The real issue I see with the current system is that novelty is prized over correctness. There is essentially no incentive to reproduce results unless it's in the furtherance of a newer, better idea. Many of the recent controversies in science have been at the ends of this effect, where novelty becomes more important than truth.
True.

Getting funding to reproduce a study is nigh impossible. And if you somehow do manage to carry it out, good luck getting it published. Either your results agree with the original, in which case you've found nothing new and your work isn't worth publishing because it contributes nothing to the field. Or your conclusions disagree with the published work, in which case you'll get rejected when peer review comes around, because the very people reviewing your paper were likely involved in the original work, or have relationships with the people who did the original work.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-25-2014, 02:29 PM
 
Location: East Millcreek
2,351 posts, read 4,926,736 times
Reputation: 2547
The bottom line is that the vast majority of people have no idea what "science" actually is, which is this: a methodology leading to cumulative expansion of knowledge. It's not a single answer about something, nor absolute truth, nor a collection of facts, nor some "study" that somebody heard about. Some studies pass muster, many more do not yet masquerade as "science." If more people understood this there would be a lot less political and social denial of established knowledge on such topics as climate change, etc etc.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-25-2014, 04:31 PM
 
675 posts, read 535,315 times
Reputation: 850
My impression of science is this.
The data is never 100% conclusive unless you can repeat the experiments infinitely often under identical conditions, in other words, never.

Unbiased scientists start with a hypothesis, use statistical techniques and assume already-established facts and theories to reject or provisionally accept it (provisionally, because statistics can never really prove something.) If the hypothesis does not get rejected then it gets reviewed and accepted as the current accepted theory. So far so good.

We do see some of this, when drug company researchers who have a huge incentive to declare a drug safe, nonetheless do not. Similarly, car manufacturers offering voluntary recalls. Maybe due to the stick of potential lawsuits, ruination and prison. But those counter-incentives do work some time.

Social "sciences" is altogether a different matter. People are infinitely malleable, so you can draw any conclusion. And shock value seems to drive the publicity and hence the money. It's creation of new mythology by any other name.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Science and Technology
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top