Spoiler alert: it is not easy, but worth it.
Four years ago, I obtained my PhD which seems like a very long time by now. As scientists, we are trained to do a lot of different things, but the training how to run a lab is rather informal and largely based on trial-and-error learning. There have been a couple of nice write-ups (e.g., https://users.fmrib.ox.ac.uk/~behrens/Startingalab.htm) from far more influential and experienced researchers than me, but I thought it might still be helpful to publicly document my humble insights as they arise and evolve over time. Continue reading “Five lessons I have learned in starting a new lab”
All of our precious results deserve the same love. But it might take more than love to open a file drawer.
Science is confronted with an apparent paradox. Although almost every researcher agrees that falsification is the key to progress and publication of null results is pivotal in the cumulative process of building knowledge, many more “positive” results are published than expected based on unbiased estimates of effect sizes. Obviously, there are many reasons for this discrepancy. A couple of days ago, Anne Scheel posted a very thoughtful blog post about why we should love null results. If you haven’t read it yet, make sure to do so, it is certainly worth the 10-min read. Whereas I second many of her conclusions, I don’t think having the same love for null effects that we have for significant effects will eventually help in tackling publication bias unless there will be a level playing field. Perhaps this pessimism is due to the take-home of several classics from literature classes taught back in the days in school: think of Romeo and Juliet or Intrigue and Love showing essentially that love is at times not enough to overcome a rigid system of family lineage, class, and seniority rule. Any association with academia is of course only coincidental. Continue reading “Why same love is sadly not enough: Confessions of an ECR about the file drawer”
There are many good reasons to start a science blog and neurocopiae has collected a few. Science is what you make of it.
Since this blog is going to be all about the scientific search for the truth, I have to come clean first: I have been pressured lately to share my thoughts with you. Many interesting new journals and conferences have reached out to me “because of my eminence in the field” in the past weeks. I have been flattered by the many read requests to emails that permuted my name in order to grab my attention somehow. To be honest, I was quite surprised to reap the benefits of my scientific outreach. Who would have thought that I could join Atomic Physics 2016 as an honorable guest, Neurosurgery 2017 as a speaker, or the International Journal of Medical & Clinical Imaging as an editor? Continue reading “Super predators moving at the speed of peer review”