How can we perpetuate reproducibility?

+5 votes
54 views
asked Aug 9, 2015 in Open Science by Daniel Mietchen (1,145 points)

Two years ago, Roger Peng discussed in his blog the ramifications of requiring reproducibility for the first producers of research objects, but not for reusers. He then proposes

What I think a good reproducibility policy should have is a type of "viral" clause. For example, the GNU General Public License (GPL) is an open source software license that requires, among other things, that anyone who writes their own software, but links to or integrates software covered under the GPL, must publish their software under the GPL too. This "viral" requirement ensures that people cannot make use of the efforts of the open source community without also giving back to that community.

I agree that having such a perpetuating policy element is very desirable, but would try to establish community norms around that, rather than using copyright or related legal constructs. My thoughts here are influenced by the common practice of framing plagiarism primarily or even exclusively as a copyright issue. But even if all the plagiarized sources were in the public domain, it would still be plagiarism, which in scientific contexts means ignoring the community norm that all statements sourced from elsewhere should indicate those sources, as well as direct quotes.

So my first hunch at perpetuating reproducibility would be to get community organs like funders, publishers, institutions or learned societies to express support for the idea that reproducibility should trigger reproducibility. How best to phrase the core elements of such statements?



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1 Answer

+3 votes
answered Aug 16, 2015 by Olek Wojnar (140 points)

I would phrase it as follows (inspired by the GPL, mostly paragraph 5c):

This is an open science research project and has committed to freely share [insert types of information/data here]. You are encouraged to use this in derivative research. However, by doing so, you commit your project to share the same information as that identified above and must require the same constraints on reuse as identified here. This stipulation does not invalidate separately-obtained permissions if you have received them from the original researchers.



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commented Aug 18, 2015 by Daniel Mietchen (1,145 points)
What about giving it a try there? I think migrating questions won't work if they have already been posted by hand, but since I don't know how to do the former, I opted for the latter.

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commented Aug 18, 2015 by Olek Wojnar (140 points)
I'm already in too many communities. ;) Just flagged it for moving.

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commented Aug 18, 2015 by Olek Wojnar (140 points)
Unfortunately I'm not a member of that community. Perhaps we could just move this question over there since this site is closing. I've often seen that done with closing beta sites. If you agree, I recommend flagging it for moderator attention and suggest the move.

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commented Aug 18, 2015 by Daniel Mietchen (1,145 points)
Reposted at http://academia.stackexchange.com/questions/51880/how-can-we-perpetuate-reproducibility

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commented Aug 18, 2015 by Olek Wojnar (140 points)
Thanks! And thanks for catching the format error, serves me right for not checking it after posting.

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commented Aug 18, 2015 by Daniel Mietchen (1,145 points)
That seems like a good start!

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