Data Availability Policy: American Economic Review

Posted: February 9th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Data Policy, EDaWaX | Tags: , , | 1 Comment »

As announced in my previous blogpost, I ‘m starting the presentation of some data availability policies and replication policies with the American Economic Review (AER). The AER is a flagship of the economic profession and one of the top ranked journals in this scientific discipline.
The AER was published in 1911 for the first time. Only 7 – 10 percent of the submissions are accepted and later on published.

The AER adopted a so called replication policy in 1986 – despite the fact that studies (for example by Dewald, Thursby and Anderson) already claimed, that a replication policy is not enough to promote replicable results.
In their policy, the Review pledged authors to provide datasets and code for processing the data to other scientists that are interested in replicating the results on request.

Replication policies have often failed, even if the corresponding author is willing to support other researchers…and I imagine that this szenario is not very common …After publishing an article, authors mostly don’t have incentives to prepare the data and code for other researchers. It costs time and the rewards the scientific system pays for sharing data often are marginal.

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