Interdisciplinary MetaResearch Group

IMG_0074-1024x429

About Us

IMeRG (Interdisciplinary MetaResearch Group) is a research group that sits across the School of BioSciences and the School of Historical and Philosophical Studies at the University of Melbourne.

We do metaresearch, sometimes also called metascience. What is that?

“the scientific study of science itself” (Munafo et al, 2017)

“an evolving scientific discipline that aims to evaluate and improve research practices. It includes thematic areas of methods, reporting, reproducibility, evaluation, and incentives (how to do, report, verify, correct, and reward science).” (Ioannidis et al, 2015)

Research Interests

Reproducibility, Replicability, Transparency, Open Science, Improving Scientific Practice, Philosophy of Science, Sociology of Science, Epistemology

Why interdisciplinary?

We are researchers that have come together from several different disciplines. Problems with reproducibility and replicability, or questionable research practice, are not specific to any one discipline. By working together in an interdisciplinary group, we gain greater insights into where these problems come from and learn lessons from each other about how to improve. IMeRG is currently includes researchers with expertise in the following areas:

  • psychology
  • ecology and evolution
  • decision science
  • education
  • psychometrics
  • history and philosophy of science

 

What’s the picture in the header? It’s by Dr Seuss’ (with obvious modifications, by Ashley Barnett) and shows the Hawtch-Hawtcher watchers. (The relevance to our work was brought to our attention by the wonderful Neil Thomason.)

“Oh, the jobs people work at! Out west near Hawtch-Hawtch there’s a Hawtch-Hawtcher bee watcher, his job is to watch. Is to keep both his eyes on the lazy town bee, a bee that is watched will work harder you see. So he watched and he watched, but in spite of his watch that bee didn’t work any harder not mawtch. So then somebody said “Our old bee-watching man just isn’t bee watching as hard as he can, he ought to be watched by another Hawtch-Hawtcher! The thing that we need is a bee-watcher-watcher!”. Well, the bee-watcher-watcher watched the bee-watcher. He didn’t watch well so another Hawtch-Hawtcher had to come in as a watch-watcher-watcher! And now all the Hawtchers who live in Hawtch-Hawtch are watching on watch watcher watchering watch, watch watching the watcher who’s watching that bee. You’re not a Hawtch-Watcher you’re lucky you see!”
― Dr. Seuss, 1973, Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are?