What are the scientific articles less accurate and truthful in the past?

The science works as follows: someone proposes an idea, that becomes a working hypothesis. Then experiments are carried out and results are reported. The proposed idea can be confirmed or rejected, which in the end validates a result. Once past this stage, researchers usually present their results in journals and scientific publications, many times refereed, that is to say, where more than one reviewer analyzes the sent items and give their opinion of the same. When you pass all of these tests is normally the article is published and then others can repeat the experience.

However, in recent years there is concern about too many results that cannot be replicated and which have been published. This phenomenon can be consequences of studies with a poor methodology, or worse yet, try to publish something whose outcome is doubtful, or attempt to publish, so that researchers can justify their work.

But maybe all this concern is out of place. Daniele Fanelli, of the London School of Economics, suggests the latter in the collection of articles published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. First, although the number of erroneous articles that are rejected has increased, also the number of “journals” that have done this has increased. Taking into account the latter, the number of articles rejected for publication has not increased.

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Second, research done with intent (by delivering such results are impossible to repeat), have shown that in the united States are not more frequent than 20 years ago. However, you can measure this possibility in countries with policies that are more weak in the publication of articles, for example, in India and China, where it is reused images of other articles and copied those images that are not of research that is intended to be published. However, on average, there is no evidence of any increase in this practice to be unethical.

So, everything seems to be a rumor to voices on the truthfulness and accuracy of the majority of the articles published in science in these days. The doubt probably arose when countries not previously published, began to do so, where, in addition to, all of a sudden became important and in fact today they are considered powers in many aspects of science, such as China or India.

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