In focus: Dan Cleather

A new blog post from IGDORE: find out more about @Daniel_Cleather


@Daniel_Cleather, it looks like Subversion has a long history of association with open science! I don’t think you mentioned this in your book?


Wow - this is so cool. I don’t know how I have never seen this before.

I was watching the interview with Sussana Hariss that’s in the In Focus post. The discussion on random grant allocation was interesting, I don’t recall if that was discussed in the book?

It reminded me of a PhD I’d seen that modelled the effects of random granting and came to quite favourable conclusions about it.

The thesis presents a reformative criticism of science funding by peer review. The criticism is based on epistemological scepticism, regarding the ability of scientific peers, or any other agent, to have access to sufficient information regarding the potential of proposed projects at the time of funding. The scepticism is based on the complexity of factors contributing to the merit of scientific projects, and the rate at which the parameters of this complex system change their values. By constructing models of different science funding mechanisms, a construction supported by historical evidence, computational simulations show that in a significant subset of cases it would be better to select research projects by a lottery mechanism than by selection based on peer review. This last result is used to create a template for an alternative funding mechanism that combines the merits of peer review with the benefits of random allocation, while noting that this alternative is not so far removed from current practice as may first appear.

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