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The role of data/code archives in the future of economic research

Author

Listed:
  • Richard Anderson
  • William Greene
  • B. D. McCullough
  • H. D. Vinod

Abstract

This essay examines the role of data and program-code archives in making economic research 'replicable.' Replication of published results is recognized as an essential part of the scientific method. Yet, historically, both the 'demand for' and 'supply of' replicable results in economics has been minimal. 'Respect for the scientific method' is not sufficient to motivate either economists or editors of professional journals to ensure the replicability of published results. We enumerate the costs and benefits of mandatory data and code archives, and argue that the benefits far exceed the costs. Progress has been made since the gloomy assessment of Dewald, Thursby and Anderson some 20 years ago in the American Economic Review, but much remains to be done before empirical economics ceases to be a 'dismal science' when judged by the replicability of its published results.

Suggested Citation

  • Richard Anderson & William Greene & B. D. McCullough & H. D. Vinod, 2008. "The role of data/code archives in the future of economic research," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(1), pages 99-119.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jecmet:v:15:y:2008:i:1:p:99-119
    DOI: 10.1080/13501780801915574
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:bla:jecsur:v:31:y:2017:i:1:p:326-342 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Michael A. Clemens, 2017. "The Meaning Of Failed Replications: A Review And Proposal," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 31(1), pages 326-342, February.
    3. Maren Duvendack & Richard W. Palmer-Jones & W. Robert Reed, 2015. "Replications in Economics: A Progress Report," Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, vol. 12(2), pages 164–191-1, May.
    4. Vlaeminck, Sven, 2013. "Data Management in Scholarly Journals and Possible Roles for Libraries - Some Insights from EDaWaX," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 49-79.
    5. Mueller-Langer, Frank & Andreoli-Versbach, Patrick, 2014. "Open Access to Research Data: Strategic Delay and the Ambiguous Welfare Effects of Mandatory Data Disclosure," Discussion Papers in Economics 21037, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
    6. Ooms, M., 2008. "Trends in Applied Econometrics Software Development 1985-2008, an analysis of Journal of Applied Econometrics research articles, software reviews, data and code," Serie Research Memoranda 0021, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics.
    7. Andreoli-Versbach, Patrick & Mueller-Langer, Frank, 2014. "Open access to data: An ideal professed but not practised," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 43(9), pages 1621-1633.
    8. A. Yalta & A. Yalta, 2010. "Should Economists Use Open Source Software for Doing Research?," Computational Economics, Springer;Society for Computational Economics, vol. 35(4), pages 371-394, April.
    9. Graham A. Davis, 2012. "Replicating "Sources of Slow Growth in African Economies"," Working Papers 2012-09, Colorado School of Mines, Division of Economics and Business.
    10. Sven Vlaeminck & Gert G. Wagner & Joachim Wagner & Dietmar Harhoff & Olaf Siegert, 2013. "Replizierbare Forschung in den Wirtschaftswissenschaften erhöhen – eine Herausforderung für wissenschaftliche Infrastrukturdienstleister," Working Paper Series of the German Council for Social and Economic Data 224, German Council for Social and Economic Data (RatSWD).
    11. Graham A. Davis, 2012. "Replicating Sachs and Warner: The 1997 Working Paper," Working Papers 2012-08, Colorado School of Mines, Division of Economics and Business.
    12. Frank Mueller-Langer & Marc Scheufen, 2013. "Academic publishing and open access," Chapters,in: Handbook on the Digital Creative Economy, chapter 32, pages 365-377 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    13. Christian Kleiber & Achim Zeileis, 2010. "The Grunfeld Data at 50," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 11, pages 404-417, November.
    14. Arne Henningsen & Géraldine Henningsen, 2011. "Econometric Estimation of the “Constant Elasticity of Substitution" Function in R: Package micEconCES," IFRO Working Paper 2011/9, University of Copenhagen, Department of Food and Resource Economics.
    15. Le Zhang & Andreas Ortmann, 2012. "A reproduction and replication of Engel’s meta-study of dictator game experiments," Discussion Papers 2012-44, School of Economics, The University of New South Wales.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    replication; scientific method; data and program archives; B4; C8;

    JEL classification:

    • B4 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology
    • C8 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs

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