No one expects much of the social sciences, so a heavy reliance on undergraduate psychology student surveys to draw conclusions and resulting lack of reproducibility is dismissed, but the National Institutes of Health is nearly half of the federal government's and lack of reproducibility in biology and other life sciences is of greater concern for that reason.
If it can't be replicated, is it science? Sure, but it's a complex explanation for the public educated on the science process.
To promote the reproducibility and transparency of biomedical and biological research, the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) issued Enhancing Research Reproducibility, which address general factors that impede the ability to reproduce experimental results as well as factors that specifically affect the use of two key tools critical to basic research: mouse models and antibodies. The report suggests actions for stakeholders across the research enterprise, including scientists, institutions, professional societies, journals, and federal agencies.
The recommendations are the culmination of a series of four meetings involving delegates from FASEB member societies, invited experts, and representatives from the National Institutes of Health. Following these dialogs, the recommendations were developed by community consensus among FASEB's member societies.
"What began as a thought-provoking discussion of some very real challenges facing our community resulted in practical recommendations to help scientists begin to move the needle in their own labs and institutions," said FASEB President, Parker B. Antin, PhD. "We cannot take for granted the public's trust in science. It is time to enact policies and procedures that emphasize the tradition of rigor in research."
FASEB is composed of 30 societies with more than 125,000 members, making it the largest coalition of biomedical research associations in the United States. Our mission is to advance health and welfare by promoting progress and education in biological and biomedical sciences through service to our member societies and collaborative advocacy.