Why Good Policy Requires Responsible Communication and Consumption of Research

Over on the Shared Justice website, I (with Katie Thompson) wrote a piece on responsible communication and consumption of research. We focus this post on the recent dust-up with respect to research into the welfare effects of participation in payday lending. Here is an excerpt:

Most representations of the scientific method include a final step: “share your results.” This integral step is often forgotten. Each previous step—“ask a question,” “do background research,” “construct a hypothesis,” “perform an experiment,” and “analyze the data”—are all major components in any modern day research methods course in the social or material sciences. This leads to a lack of instruction about how to share or communicate research and hinders scientific progress outside of the silos of academia, research labs, and think tanks. Instead, researchers only attain these skills informally—if at all.

This reality is particularly troublesome because good research does not sell itself. This is an inconvenient truth for many researchers—particularly academic researchers who may have actively chosen not to pursue a career path in sales and marketing.

Check out the remainder of the piece here: “Why Good Policy Requires Responsible Communication and Consumption of Research.”

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