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Science is the best thing that has happened to Homo sapiens. It is important to apply the scientific method in ways that are the most efficient in leading to—and translating—important discoveries. However, this goal is not easy. There are many situations where research practices are applied in suboptimal ways, resulting in a reproducibility crisis in which trust in scientific findings is diminished. In his lecture, Dr. Ioannidis will discuss how we can improve the robustness, efficiency, and transparency of research practices. In particular, emphasis on replication may improve the credibility track record of current investigations across many different disciplines. Several disciplines—such as genetic epidemiology—that have already incorporated replication as a sine qua non have seen a dramatic improvement of their credibility. In most scientific disciplines, replication has far more scientific and practical value than discovery. In the current environment, in most fields, discovery without replication is mostly a nuisance.
This annual lecture is named in honor of Robert S. Gordon Jr., former Assistant Surgeon General of the U.S. Public Health Service and Special Assistant to former NIH Director James Wyngaarden. Topics focus on clinical research and epidemiology. Speakers are selected by the NIH Office of Disease Prevention.
John P.A. Ioannidis, M.D., D.Sc., Professor of Medicine, Professor of Health Research and Policy, Professor of Biomedical Data Science, and Professor of Statistics at Stanford University School of Medicine; Co-Director, Meta-Research Innovation Center (METRICS) at Stanford University