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The Influence of Hidden Researcher Decisions in Applied Microeconomics

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Listed:
  • Huntington-Klein, Nick
  • Arenas, Andreu
  • Beam, Emily
  • Bertoni, Marco
  • Bloem, Jeffrey R.
  • Burli, Pralhad
  • Chen, Naibin
  • Greico, Paul
  • Ekpe, Godwin
  • Pugatch, Todd
  • Saavedra, Martin
  • Stopnitzky, Yaniv

Abstract

Researchers make hundreds of decisions about data collection, preparation, and analysis in their research. We use a many-analysts approach to measure the extent and impact of these decisions. Two published causal empirical results are replicated by seven replicators each. We find large differences in data preparation and analysis decisions, many of which would not likely be reported in a publication. No two replicators reported the same sample size. Statistical significance varied across replications, and for one of the studies the effect’s sign varied as well. The standard deviation of estimates across replications was 3-4 times the typical reported standard error.

Suggested Citation

  • Huntington-Klein, Nick & Arenas, Andreu & Beam, Emily & Bertoni, Marco & Bloem, Jeffrey R. & Burli, Pralhad & Chen, Naibin & Greico, Paul & Ekpe, Godwin & Pugatch, Todd & Saavedra, Martin & Stopnitzky, 2020. "The Influence of Hidden Researcher Decisions in Applied Microeconomics," GLO Discussion Paper Series 537, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:glodps:537
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Replication; Metascience; Research;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C81 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Methodology for Collecting, Estimating, and Organizing Microeconomic Data; Data Access
    • C10 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - General
    • B41 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Economic Methodology

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