Now two scientists are proposing an interesting reason for this: evolutionary forces.
Writing in New Scientist, Simon Oxenham says:
“Paul Smaldino and Richard McElreath at the University of California Davis used an evolutionary theory-based computational model to analyse the problem of bad science. They found that ‘the most powerful incentives in contemporary science actively encourage, reward and propagate poor research methods and abuse of statistical procedures’. In short, it’s natural selection for shoddy science.”
Well, if that is what evolution-believing researchers think, how can we trust anything they say?
While scientists are fond of using words like ‘innovative’, ‘groundbreaking’ and ‘novel’ in the abstracts of their papers, they tend to exaggerate the importance of their findings:
“Smaldino and McElreath found that their model pushed researchers to do less rigorous science, and publish more false positives. They suggest that their model shows that bad science can be explained as a result of the evolutionary selective pressures that are acting on scientists.”