Psychology’s Replication Crisis and the Grant Culture: Righting the Ship

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Abstract

The past several years have been a time for soul searching in psychology, as we have gradually come to grips with the reality that some of our cherished findings are less robust than we had assumed. Nevertheless, the replication crisis highlights the operation of psychological science at its best, as it reflects our growing humility. At the same time, institutional variables, especially the growing emphasis on external funding as an expectation or de facto requirement for faculty tenure and promotion, pose largely unappreciated hazards for psychological science, including (a) incentives for engaging in questionable research practices, (b) a single-minded focus on programmatic research, (c) intellectual hyperspecialization, (d) disincentives for conducting direct replications, (e) stifling of creativity and intellectual risk taking, (f) researchers promising more than they can deliver, and (g) diminished time for thinking deeply. Preregistration should assist with (a), but will do little about (b) through (g). Psychology is beginning to right the ship, but it will need to confront the increasingly deleterious impact of the grant culture on scientific inquiry

Link to resource: https://doi.org/10.1177/1745691616687745

Type of resources: Primary Source, Reading, Paper

Education level(s): College / Upper Division (Undergraduates)

Primary user(s): Student

Subject area(s): Applied Science, Social Science

Language(s): English