Journal article

Transparency in Ecology and Evolution: Real Problems, Real Solutions

Timothy H Parker, Wolfgang Forstmeier, Julia Koricheva, Fiona Fidler, Jarrod D Hadfield, Yung En Chee, Clint D Kelly, Jessica Gurevitch, Shinichi Nakagawa



To make progress scientists need to know what other researchers have found and how they found it. However, transparency is often insufficient across much of ecology and evolution. Researchers often fail to report results and methods in detail sufficient to permit interpretation and meta-analysis, and many results go entirely unreported. Further, these unreported results are often a biased subset. Thus the conclusions we can draw from the published literature are themselves often biased and sometimes might be entirely incorrect. Fortunately there is a movement across empirical disciplines, and now within ecology and evolution, to shape editorial policies to better promote transparency. This c..

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Awarded by US National Science Foundation

Awarded by Australian Research Council (ARC)

Funding Acknowledgements

We thank Mark Elgar for requesting an aggregation of evidence regarding the current state of transparency in ecology and evolution. This request was made at the November 2015 workshop entitled 'Improving Inference in Evolutionary Biology and Ecology'. Other participants at this workshop (complete list: were also vital contributors to discussions that inspired this paper. Financial support for the workshop was provided by the US National Science Foundation (DEB: 1548207) and The Laura and John Arnold Foundation, and logistical support was provided by the Center for Open Science. Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellowships supported S.N. (FT130100268) and F.F. (FT150100297). We also thank Losia Lagisz for helping in the preparation of Figure 1. Comments from an anonymous reviewer significantly improved the manuscript.