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ClinicalTrials.gov not living up to promise

Clinical researchers in the US are required to register trials and deposit trial information at ClinicalTrials.gov. Most, however, don’t. According to several recent study, compliance with this law may be somewhere between around 13 and 22 percent. Which is to say that of the 13, 327 clinical trials conducted between 2008 and 2013, only 1,790 were filed on  ClinicalTrials.gov, leaving 11,537 unreported. Says author Kent Anderson in this March 3,…

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Enhancing Participation in the U.S. Global Change Research Program

The US Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) is a collection of 13 Federal entities charged by law to assist the United States and the world to understand, assess, predict, and respond to human-induced and natural processes of global change. As the understanding of global change has evolved over the past decades and as demand for scientific information on global change has increased, the USGCRP has increasingly focused on research that…

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Is University Research Missing What Matters Most?

School of Public Health Dean Sandro Galea issued a call for a change in research priorities—away from narrow, piecemeal inquiries, towards large-scale efforts to improve population health—in the January 24 edition of The Chronicle of Higher Education. In a Chronicle issue headlined, “Is University Research Missing What Matters?” Galea is a leading voice urging a revamping of the structures that support university science in order to tackle the most pressing…

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New book from National Academies, “On Being a Scientist”

The scientific research enterprise is built on a foundation of trust. Scientists trust that the results reported by others are valid. Society trusts that the results of research reflect an honest attempt by scientists to describe the world accurately and without bias. But this trust will endure only if the scientific community devotes itself to exemplifying and transmitting the values associated with ethical scientific conduct. On Being a Scientist was…

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Psych research findings not holding up?

The past several years have been bruising ones for the credibility of the social sciences. A star social psychologist was caught fabricating data, leading to more than 50 retracted papers. A top journal published a study supporting the existence of ESP that was widely criticized. The journal Science pulled a political science paper on the effect of gay canvassers on voters’ behavior because of concerns about faked data. Now, a…

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When research funding is like Robin Hood in reverse

If you ask officers of the European commission in research and innovation whether any of the funding attached to Horizon 2020 (the biggest EU research and innovation programme ever) will improve research career conditions, they are likely to politely cough, roll their eyes and answer: yes. They’d point, for example, to the European Research Council (ERC) starting grants and the Marie-Sklodowska-Curie individual fellowships which both fall under the £63bn programme.…

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nSCI Profile Series: Ruha Benjamin on science and society

Ruha Benjamin is an interdisciplinary scholar who examines the relationship between science, technology, medicine, and society. She is a professor of African American studies at Princeton University and is the author of People’s Science: Bodies and Rights on the Stem Cell Frontier (Stanford University Press 2013), in which she asks questions about who is included and excluded in scientific research initiatives. Dr. Benjamin was recently an American Council of Learned…

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NIH’s world research reporting tool

An article published in Science last week discusses the value of creating a global map of health R&D activity to improve coordination of research and create a “global observatory” for health research. I encourage you to check it out, and I also thought it was a timely reminder for discussing updates to the world research reporting tool I blogged about in March last year. The World Research Portfolio Online Reporting…

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