The replication crisis is a phenomenon widely accepted in major institutions of science (Ioannidis, 2005, 2014, Baker 2016). Roughly half of peer reviewed scientific literature is probably flawed or totally wrong. There are almost certainly problems in all fields of science. How did this problem develop?
The inadequacies of the peer review system are largely to blame. The peer review process is a grossly deficient quality assurance process.
2. The peer review problem
Peer review as it works today:
- Peer review is a quick check by maybe a couple of “peers”. It might take a just few hours.
- Peers never have time to do thorough checks or genuine replication of work.
- Peers might be the authors friends.
- The public is completely unaware of how pathetic the peer review process is, or its failure rate.
- Science institutions have deceived the public to think peer review is a far more robust and lengthy process than it actually is.
- Peer review makes group-think inevitable
Examples of reliable science abound and are foundational to our civilization. It is massively replicated and often tested every day. Examples are Newtons laws of motion, Quantum Mechanics, Thermodynamics, Theory of Relativity, most of the medical sciences. You can stake your life on it. In fact, you do so every day.
Continue reading: The Replication Crisis. By Peter Ridd.